- Small Business Trends - http://smallbiztrends.com -
How Are Customers Treated When They Call Your Business?
Posted By Rieva Lesonsky On April 29, 2014 @ 8:00 am In Sales | 8 Comments
Is your small business paying enough attention to incoming calls?
Today, with so much focus on social media, email and online marketing, it’s easy to believe that providing customer service through live chat is all you need to do, or that customers are content to contact you by email and wait to hear back from you.
In reality, human behavior hasn’t changed – just the technology.
When customers are frustrated about something, have questions about your product or service, or are ready to buy, their first instinct is often to pick up the phone and call your business. In other words, customers who take the trouble to call you are primed – to buy, to vent, to ask questions.
What’s more, if your business is involved in any kind of inbound marketing program – whether using SEO, click-to-call buttons on your website or in your ads – you’re spending good money to generate those calls from interested customers.
How callers are treated can make all the difference in whether they move to the next stage in the purchasing process, get over their anger, actually make a purchase…or get turned off of your company forever.
So how are customers and prospects treated when they call your business? Here are some questions to ask yourself.
Set standards for employees to answer the phone on the second ring (third ring at the absolute latest). Make sure all employees—not just the receptionist or office manager—know it’s their responsibility to answer the phone if necessary.
Do the employees who answer your phone sound excited to talk to customers—or like it’s an interruption in their busy day? Remember, customers are the ones who pay your bills, and they have plenty of options to go elsewhere.
Internal FAQ lists can help employees quickly find answers to questions customers may have. Make sure all employees know how to transfer calls to the proper person.
There’s nothing worse than being put on hold and hearing dead silence, so you don’t know if you’ve been cut off or should continue to wait. Use on-hold messages or music so customers know what’s going on.
The faster you can respond to a customer’s inquiry, the more likely you are to make a sale. If you can’t answer all calls, strive to return all calls within 30 minutes—yes, 30 minutes—for best results. Outgoing voice mail messages should state how quickly customers can expect their calls to be returned.
By paying as much attention to incoming calls as you do to your social media outreach, you’ll rapidly see results—and increased sales.
This article, provided by Nextiva, is republished through a content distribution agreement. The original can be found here .
Phone  Photo via Shutterstock
Article printed from Small Business Trends: http://smallbiztrends.com
URL to article: http://smallbiztrends.com/2014/04/customers-treated-call-business.html
URLs in this post:
 can be found here: http://www.nextiva.com/voip/nextiva-tuesday-tip-who-they-gonna-call-and-how-you-gonna-answer.html
 Phone: http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-141675481/stock-photo-smiling-mature-woman-florist-small-business-flower-shop-owner-she-is-using-her-telephone-and.html