eStara's 3 million VoIP users

Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Randy Savicky
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eStara's 3 million VoIP users

eStara is claiming 3 million users and they've announced a positive Forrester Research report today. I've used the eStara web push-to-talk product a few years ago and it worked quite well (good voice quality) even back then. 3 million users has to make eStara the most "stealth" VoIP player I've ever run across. Compare that with ~400,000 Vonage users and ~39 million Skype users, eStara isn't nearly the household name that either of these two VoIP players are. Of course, eStara has gone after the "boring" business VoIP market rather than the "chic" consumer market, so that could have something to do with it. (Side note: As I'm blogging this from my living room PC/TV a Vonage commercial just came on. What are the odds?)

In any event, eStara announced today that usage of its Push to Talk service, a “click to call” application that connects online buyers and merchants, has exceeded 3 million unique users. eStara offers communication and application services to connect businesses and their customers, including Push to Talk and local number and toll-free Call Tracking services. eStara enables clients to communicate across channels and seamlessly track online and offline customer communications, increasing sales, lowering transaction costs and improving customer satisfaction.

A new report from Forrester Research highlights the impact that eStara’s cross channel communication service has had for Dell Financial Services. “Prior to implementing eStara’s click-to-callback service, the lender lost about 90% of approved but unverified applicants – people who were ready to spend money but bailed out of the process... After placing an eStara button on the form to provide a click-to-callback option, the lender now verifies – and converts – 55% of these applicants via phone.”

In the report’s recommendations section, Forrester Research includes the following statement: “Low cost, simple technology, and organizational ease make click-to-callback a must-have for any significant multi-channel business.” (Forrester; Best Practices: Click-to-Callback Bridges the Cross-Channel Gap, Bob Chatham, 05/05/05. This third-party research available by special arrangement from Forrester at: http://www.estara.com/whitepaper/forrester.php)

eStara offers Push to Talk as a fully-hosted service through a variety of pricing models. For partners looking to generate revenue from the Call Tracking service eStara offers flexible pricing options to accommodate a client’s specific business model. These business models include pay for performance, pay per call, call volume guarantees and subscription models.

“Increasingly companies are realizing that cross-channel communication problems are losing them money and driving customers to abandon transactions,” said John Piescik, eStara’s chief operating officer. “Putting a traditional telephone number on your website just creates a data black hole -- eStara gives clients actionable data with every call that produces higher transaction conversions, greater long-term value and happier customers.”

eStara Push to Talk applications have been deployed by more than 350 global enterprises, spanning diverse industries including yellow pages and directories, financial services, retail, travel and hospitality, real estate and automotive. eStara clients include: Amazon.com’s A9 Yellow Pages, Continental Airlines, JCrew, Gerber, Club Med, Verizon SuperPages and HSBC.

eStara applications are powered by underlying VoIP technology that requires no additional hardware or software installation for end users because it is delivered via an ASP model. Deploying VoIP-based applications allow companies to leverage the cost-savings, flexibility and scalability of IP-based services for cross-channel communication.

eStara’s suite of applications including Push to Talk and Call Tracking are developed using its VoIP technology platform delivered via an ASP model to companies including Continental Airlines, JCrew and esurance.com. eStara claims that its Push to Talk service is the most widely deployed "click to call" service in the world with over 3,000,000 users in 113 countries, giving users the ability to make PC-to-Phone and Phone-to-Phone calls from the Web.



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