5 Courteous Call Answering Tips That Make Customers Happy
In our era of impersonal online information sharing, more and more customers are longing for a personal touch when it comes to customer service. Often, this connection begins with a customer’s first phone call to a business. Regardless of the industry, that first phone call — and each subsequent phone call after that — will create an impression about the business. Consider these five call answering tips to create a positive impression that will keep your customers smiling.
1. The Greeting
Are your customers greeted by voicemail and a confusing list of prompts? Or does the phone ring and ring until a harried receptionist greets the customer with, “Hold please.” Studies have shown that one-third of callers will hang up if they receive voicemail, and long hold times may give the impression that your company is too busy to handle more business.
Take measures to ensure that your customers are greeted quickly and professionally by a live person who gives their name and your business name. Your phone receptionist should also thank the customer for calling, and ask how they may be of assistance. For example, “Thank you for calling Company Amazing, this is Ann. How may I help you today?” Be sure to ask the caller’s name and use it at least once in the conversation.
2. The “Yes”
Customers love it when the answer to their question is yes, so deliver it with enthusiasm. If they are calling to inquire whether or not you offer a service that happens to be one of your strong suits, for example, instead of just “Yes” say, “Certainly! That’s our specialty. I’d be happy to tell you more about that.”
3. The “No”
If your business doesn’t offer what a caller is requesting, it’s still important to leave a positive, helpful impression. Tell the caller that your company doesn’t offer the service they’re requesting, and offer an alternative only if it’s in the same ballpark. For example, if a caller is looking for a primary care doctor and you’re a dental office, tell them that should they need dental care in the future you’d be more than happy to tell them more about your practice. Don’t try to hard sell them on dental care, just tell them you appreciate their call and, if possible, even offer a referral for the service they actually are currently seeking.
4. The “I Don’t Know”
If you don’t know the answer to a caller’s question, don’t waste their time by bluffing it. Simply say, “That’s a great question! I want to be sure I give you the right answer, so do you mind if I put you on hold while I check?” If it’s going to be more than a minute or two before you’ll be back on the line, offer to find out and call the customer back.
5. Gathering Information
When it comes to taking messages, be sure to repeat contact information such as phone numbers and email addresses back to the caller. This not only ensures that you have the correct contact information for following up, it puts the caller at ease that you’ve taken the time to pay close attention.
How your calls are handled makes a lasting impression on your customers. If you’d like to discuss how virtual receptionists might serve your call answering needs, contact Voice Link of Columbus, Inc. We offer month-to-month service agreements to meet the needs of any business regardless of size. Secure HIPAA/HiTech messaging, appointment scheduling, and customized communication solutions save you time and money while optimizing customer care. Our excellent reputation, expert staff, and state-of-the-art technology will exceed your expectations. Request information online or call us at (800) 262-2799 for a free consultation.
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