Answering services have been around for many years, dating back to the old-fashioned days of operators working switchboards while people dialed in from rotary phones. However, advances in technology have brought us light-years from those early days, and today answering services can do so much more than you may realize. Here are just 7 surprising things a live answering service can do for businesses today.
Capture & Encourage Leads
Consumer Reports reports that nearly 3 out of 4 callers who reach a business’s voicemail will hang up without leaving a message. Each one of those calls is a potential business opportunity that has been lost. While we’d like to think that they will call back or leave a voicemail, the reality is that in today’s fast-paced world of instant gratification, they usually don’t.
It’s understandable, though, that it’s a real challenge to answer every phone call. Most businesses don’t have the staffing or the technology to answer every single call when it comes in. However, live answering services do have the staffing and the technology to answer every call, 24/7/365. Plus, answering service receptionists today are trained to capture the exact information you need from your potential customers and encourage callers that their needs and requests will be taken care of.
Represent Your Business
Too often people assume that answering service receptionists will sound like robotic, impersonal operators who can offer little to no information about your business. That’s far from the case today. Live answering service receptionists are professionally trained to represent your business as an extension of your staff, and callers aren’t usually even aware they’re speaking with someone who’s not physically in your office. Answering service agents follow your guidelines for answering questions and providing information, saving your in-house staff valuable time and energy.
Take Orders & Reservations
Live answering services can provide customized order and reservation processing for each client. This may include booking virtual or in-person seminars, taking reservations for events, or processing catalog or product orders, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Answering services can input orders using their own software or may even access your own software.
To keep those customer appointments rolling in, you first have to schedule them. But when you’re too busy to answer the phone, it’s tough to schedule appointments or keep up with your own calendar. An answering service can integrate with your calendar system to schedule appointments for your customers or clients so that you can focus on managing your business.
Screen Job Candidates
We all know what it’s like to post a job opening and then be flooded by calls, many of which are from unqualified candidates. The process of weeding them out can be annoyingly time-consuming and frustrating. Live answering service receptionists can manage those calls and screen applicants by asking questions to see if they meet the basic requirements a business needs. Qualified candidates’ information can then passed along to the business for them to contact at their convenience.
Help Should Disaster Strike
Hurricanes and wildfires have taught us that the key to overcoming a disaster and avoiding downtime for your business is to have a plan already in place before the disaster hits. When you have a custom disaster recovery plan in place, your communication channels will be covered in case something disruptive occurs. Your clients and customers will be promptly attended to until you’re able to get back to business. When you return, you’ll be able to rebound much more quickly than if you had to catch up with hours—or days—of missed communications.
Reporting & Tracking
Keeping your finger on the pulse of what is, or isn’t, happening in your business is vital to growth, but it can also be time-consuming. Live answering service call representatives can track and report the number of calls coming into your business for any specified amount of time. They can report on any changing trends with the types of calls so that you’re aware of what is or isn’t working.
In short, live answering service agents can do so much more for your business than you realize. The agents operate as a courteous and professional first line of customer service for your business, answering frequently asked questions and taking care of numerous tasks. The result is a streamlined productivity for you and your staff.
If you’d like to learn more about how a live answering service can serve your customers, contact Voice Link of Columbus, Inc.. Customized communication solutions can save you time and money while optimizing customer care. We offer month-to-month service agreements to meet the needs of any business regardless of size. 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.