Vinomofo Toasts Their Success With a Cloud Phone System
There's a lot of elitism in the wine business, with experts eager to promote its mystique. Wine e-commerce company Vinomofo works hard to cut through the snobbery and make wine more accessible for everyday buyers. That means using a solid phone system for sales and customer service. Upon sampling Aircall's service, the company got instant notes of reliability and efficiency with subtle undertones of awesome.
Vinomofo operates two separate business units. Vinomofo.com is its e-commerce website, backed by customer service and sales teams that take mostly inbound calls. Vinomofo prides itself on customer service, happily taking return bottles with no questions asked. This is an experience that can’t be engineered unless each agent is readily available on their own dedicated phone number.
The company's other unit, VinoDirect, takes that customer experience into overdrive. The wine dealers on its VinoDirect sales team sell directly to consumers on behalf of wineries. Dealers advise customers who have opted into the dealer experience, recommending wines that suit their individual preferences and tastes. This requires a personal relationship between dealer and customer that focuses even more intensely on customer experience.
VinoDirect’s sales team needs a phone system that supports mostly outbound calls to customers that tracks each customer interaction. It also demands a system with exceptional call quality, that is reliable and has minimal downtime - if customers can't place phone orders with dealers, revenues on that channel drop to zero.
The responsibility for choosing that system fell to Vinomofo's Head of Engineering, Luke Cunningham. He leads the company's technical decisions, and determines the technology platforms and tools Vinomofo uses.
"We're working on a full re-platform to a headless e-commerce architecture. This is something we've been working on for nearly two years now, and Aircall became part of that for us."
Vinomofo's previous PBX desk phones fell short of its needs, offering little more than bare-bones functionality. Their PBX system didn't integrate with their other tools, such as HubSpot. It couldn't track teams' phone activity, meaning it couldn't monitor communication trends to enhance their teams’ performance.
Making the Move to Aircall
Cunningham knew the company needed a more advanced phone system, and it was the COVID-19 pandemic that finally forced the issue. When the crisis hit in early 2020, it was clear that Vinomofo’s existing desk phone system wouldn't easily support remote work.
"I had the option to have everyone unplug their hard phone and take it home. That meant the headache of people not having good internet at home and wondering if it would work at all," he said.
Cunningham evaluated several solutions, but none of them ticked all the boxes. One competitor, for example, lacked certain basic functionalities Vinomofo was used to. Vinomofo would have had to build these features themselves own or use a complex workaround. Instead, Cunningham decided on Aircall, with full contact centre functionality out of the box. Within two weeks, Vinomofo had transitioned to their new system, with employees easily installing it on their devices and quickly learning how to use its intuitive interface.
Employees could access Vinomofo's new phone system from anywhere with an internet connection, enabling them to work from home with ease. It also offered better call quality than the company's old solution, proved more reliable, and even generated some cost savings - Luke estimates that Vinomofo saved in the region of $100,000 from switching to Aircall.
"We've had very good uptime with our phone since moving to Aircall—much more than we had with our hard phones, which always seemed to be broken,"
Aircall also gave Vinomofo deep insights into its customer communication patterns. Now teams can quickly pull up metrics such as the number of inbound and missed calls, alongside trends in team members' performance. Feeding this data into its Domo business intelligence platform delivers insights that help it to streamline its workflows.
Dial C for Configuration
Aircall’s cloud-based phone system also gives Vinomofo new levels of control over its phone system. Team members are able to adjust settings and reconfigure IVR and call routing arrangements themselves through the dashboard and Aircall app, without needing to contact anyone in IT. This enables them to easily, quickly, and at any time, adapt the system to their communication needs. A support ticket is no longer required for Vinomofo’s teams to create a new phone number for a new joiner. Now, Vinomofo can handle the job itself in a couple of clicks, straight from the Aircall dashboard. For teams that manage lots of inbound calls, that's a godsend.
Aircall also integrates natively with HubSpot. Vinomofo connected the two services using Aircall's one-click integration and public API. Aircall logs each call automatically in HubSpot, enabling agents to focus on value-adding customer service tasks and adding call notes.
"Aircall's HubSpot integration allows us to segment recently called customers so we don't re-call them," Cunningham said. He added that they also use it to track engagement—or lack thereof: "For example, if someone doesn't pick up the phone, we'll stop calling them."
Vinomofo also integrates Aircall with Postcall, allowing them to easily carry out customer experience surveys after calls.
Post-lockdown, Aircall's cloud-based system VinoMofo’s need for network cables and a costly pack-up and set-up process when it moved to its new offices.
This is only the beginning of a growing relationship between Vinomofo and Aircall. Cunningham expects to make further use of Aircall’s integrations and Public API in the future as it redevelops much of its infrastructure from the ground up. For example, Aircall’s BigCommerce integration will come in handy when Vinomofo adopts BigCommerce as its e-commerce platform in the coming months.
Using SMS in future will also enable them to be more flexible and personalised with their approach to dealing with customers.
“We’re going to be using SMS - we’re just working out the strategy for numbers. That will just level up the personal communication we’re able to have with customers and will hopefully have big impact on revenue of those channels. Because if a customer can’t answer the phone, they’re more likely to be able to answer an SMS.”
The successful use of Aircall by Vinomofo stems in part from a close alignment between the two companies. Just as Vinomofo takes the gobbledygook out of wine, Aircall cuts through the technobabble to offer simple, affordable cloud-based phone services. The year the two met turned out to be a good one for Vinomofo. A very good vintage indeed.
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