More and more people today are searching for information about businesses by using their hand-held mobile devices, which gives consumers the ability to make a call to any business with just a tap or click. This is dramatically increasing the number of inbound phone calls consumers are placing when they are considering purchasing a product or service.
In fact, an analysis report by the research firm BIA/Kelsey estimates that mobile search will drive more than 73 billion inbound sales calls to small and large businesses in 2018. Looking ahead, it’s estimated that the number of inbound sales calls to businesses will rise more than 50% to 162 billion calls in 2019!
Michael Boland, report author, senior analyst and VP of content at BIA/Kelsey, says, “There’s a shift underway in the tech and media worlds marked by a tighter embrace of phone calls as a lead form for paying advertisers. Calls have always been highly valued by small businesses and now the notion of calls as currency has accelerated in the smartphone era, where search has fused with the phone. Businesses that get in front of consumers with the right messaging and calls to action, like mobile click-to-call, can drive high-quality leads and achieve a high return on ad spend.”
Step 1: Make Your Website Mobile Friendly
So, how should businesses take advantage of this new wave of currency that smartphones will be creating? The first step is to make sure your website is optimized for mobile viewing and that it has your phone number prominently displayed so that viewers can simply tap or click to call.
Step 2: Answer Your Phone
The next step is to answer your phone. That sounds simple enough, but too many businesses default to voicemail or putting callers on hold. Today’s consumers don’t have time for either of those scenarios. Potential customers are calling for something they can’t get from their mobile search alone. They want to get more information by talking to a real person, quickly.
Step 3: Deliver Consistently & Constantly
Each phone call is an opportunity to create a good experience for potential and current customers, so each call must meet or exceed caller expectations. Callers expect to speak with a live, friendly, knowledgeable person. They don’t want to reach voicemail or an automated system, or be put on hold.
As we discussed in Are You Turning Away 74% Of Your Customers?, how a call is handled makes all the difference in what customers will do next. If the call is a negative experience, 74% of people are likely to choose another business and 70% are likely to complain to friends and family. However, if it’s a positive experience, 80% of callers will become repeat customers and 60% are likely to spend more money on current or future purchases.
You need to be prepared to ensure that your phones are answered during the times when your customers are calling. If that happens to be after business hours, arrange for an answering service to answer after hours. Or better yet, arrange for an answering service to professionally manage your calls 24-hours a day, so that each and every call is answered consistently and quickly.
Your customers will feel valued by knowing that their calls are important enough to be answered promptly by a friendly professional who is dedicated to helping them with whatever needs they have. Stay up-to-date on consumers expectations and practices, such as the rise in smartphone calls stemming from mobile searches. Rather than being knocked over by the incoming wave of calls from mobile smartphone searches, you’ll be riding the wave like a surfing pro.
Voice Link of Columbus, Inc. makes sure that your calls are answered 24/7, promptly and professionally. We’ve earned an 82% referral rate for our exceptional customer service solutions. Our team has nearly 30 years of experience in full-service telecommunication solutions and provides live answering services that will exceed your expectations. We offer plans on a monthly basis, for businesses of all sizes and in all industries. Request information online or call us at (866) 758-5628 for a free consultation.