Amazon Connect Boosts Customer Service for Traeger Grills

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Traeger Grills offers the best-selling wood-pellet-fueled grills, smokers, and accessories in the country, but its customer service hadn’t always been top of the line, according to Bryan Carey, its head of operations and analytics.

The Salt Lake City-based company faced a rapidly growing customer base and a diversified product offering that posed challenges to contact center agents attempting to quickly respond to customer inquiries. It was having significant issues organizing information for customer service agents in real time.

“We didn’t have any of our own technology; we needed a platform that allowed us to interact with customers in a way that we just didn’t have at the time,” Carey says.

To turn that around, Carey and other Traeger executives knew they needed a solution that could pull customer information from multiple systems into a unified customer profile that agents could access while on phone calls, enabling them to deliver more personalized service while eliminating the time-consuming process of collecting basic information.

Any new technology would also need to be scalable, as the company was expecting “a period of exceptional growth over the next three to five years,” Carey says.

Additionally, it would need a high degree of interoperability, have to integrate easily with other technology, and be flexible in terms of licensing and overall costs.

Traeger looked at a number of contact center solutions but eventually settled last year on Amazon Web Services’ Amazon Connect. The complete suite has all the functionality Traeger needs from one vendor.

“It allows us to take advantage of technology that we would normally have to pay a variety of different partners to leverage, whether that’s natural language processing for voice recognition or sentiment analysis,” Carey says.

Another big selling point was Amazon Connect’s ease of use. “We wanted to be self-sufficient in managing the technology by ourselves without requiring a bunch of resources and software engineers,” Carey recalls.

Also attractive was Amazon Connect’s flexible payment options. “Our business is fairly seasonal; we’re extremely busy in the summer, but we’re not as busy in the winter. We didn’t want to find ourselves where we were paying for licenses to things on a monthly or annual basis when we just weren’t using them.”

Setting up Amazon Connect was simple, too, Carey adds. “We had a very kind of rudimentary but functioning contact center within two to three hours. To migrate all the agents, it took us about a week and a half from the time that we clicked in.”

The ease of use has continued, according to Carey. “We’ve never had a single hiccup in terms of service interruption or anything. It’s been rock-solid in terms of reliability.”

With Amazon Connect, when a customer calls in, the system asks for the nature of the call. The natural language processing engine uses the response to route the customer to the most appropriate agent.

Since rolling out the solution, Traeger’s customer satisfaction scores have tripled, now falling within the 90 to 95 percentile.

“We’ve been able to simplify the agent experience, just like we’ve been able to improve the customer experience,” Carey adds.

Customer call times have dropped by 25 percent, with a much higher percentage of customers getting the information they need the first time. In fact, first-call resolution has doubled.

Based on its success so far, Traeger will be expanding its use of the Amazon Connect capabilities beyond customer service to marketing, using natural language processing and real-time transcription to identify opportunities to cross-sell other products and services when customers call in. It is also looking into the Amazon Connect Voice ID solution, which provides real-time caller authentication using machine learning-powered voice analysis. 

The Payoff

Since implementing Amazon Connect, Traeger Grills has seen the following results:

  • call handling times have decreased by 25 percent;
  • first-call resolutions have doubled; and
  • customer satisfaction scores have tripled.

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