As a business, you’re pretty confident that very few of your inbound calls go unanswered
Given 80% of all business communications take place over the phone, the cost of a missed call may be far more than you would have thought. But given the competitive nature of the industry today, just why are businesses allowing this to happen?
If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.
There tends to be the attitude of installing a phone system and then forgetting about it for ten years until it needs to be replaced. Which from a cost perspective might sound sensible, but what’s the cost of lost business?
In the past ten years, there’s been a significant shift towards working remotely and from home. Mobile phones and CRM’s have changed the way we interact and generate business, yet business practices sometimes struggle to reflect these changes.
Is my business going to benefit from a better phone system?
One of our customers, a reputable UK estate agency, thought very few calls went unanswered. However, after conducting internal research, we discovered this wasn’t the case. In a single month over 1000 calls went unanswered, which raised the question – just how much business were they missing out on?
What was the solution for the estate agency?
With several branches across the UK, each with a telecom set up, a cost savings approach was the initial route of enquiry for improving their overall call performance. They planned to reduce costs through amalgamation, having viewed the performance of each branch’s IT and telecom systems in isolation.
They hadn’t yet realised the value of implementing a companywide intuitive phone system, as it can save both money and generate business.
Traditionally, telephone systems were seen as a mandatory business expense. However, it’s also important to recognise their function as a vital channel of communication to your customers. So how can you better communicate with them?
This is where Cloud comes in.
When fully equipped with our byphone system, we encouraged the company to embrace efficiency. Providing them with vital call data, we were able to detail just how they were communicating with their customers, and how they could do it better. They were doing some great things, but their missed call stats just couldn’t be ignored.
Using the call data we provided, they were able to tweak their opening times so that when a branch is engaged, the call flows to another office. Shortening their IVR and adding more users to first-line ring groups were also some of the measures implemented to reduce missed calls and improve customer communication. With just a few simple adjustments, we improved their missed calls answering by 90%; significantly improving customer experience and business efficiency.
But how does this translate into generating more business?
Given Accenture’s finding that 66% of customers are likely to switch companies because of poor customer service, the value in effective telecom systems is in both the attraction of new customers and retention of those already existing.
So just how much is a missed call costing me?
Lost calls affect all businesses in some capacity, but in this case, the average sale value was over £300. One thousand missed calls at £300 each equates to a significant amount of business. By thinking of each phone call in terms of a potential sale, it highlights just how vital telecommunications are in generating new business.
Long term failings
Missed calls can also have the potential to damage your businesses’ reputation. If a customer can’t get hold of the sales team, they’re much less likely to renew their contract. That and unanswered calls can leave a general distaste in your customer’s mouth.
Given the digital era, you’d think this wasn’t as relevant. However, given that 80% of business enquiries are via telephone – a competent VoIP system is critical in giving your business more control over customer communication.
First Impression Count
An age-old business mantra, but boy, does it still ring true. Most often, the telephone is a customer’s point of contact with your business. If they can’t get a hold of you, this will likely be reflected in how they feel about your business. A customer’s time is precious, and if they can reach another company easier, they usually will.
So how can I stop missed calls in my business?
VoIP or hosted telephony can massively help reduce your number of missed calls. We’ll use the unique features of your business to tailor a plan to you, considering factors like:
- How many calls are you receiving after hours?
- If a phone is engaged, how is it handled?
- Holiday periods – where do calls go?
- When staff are off, are their calls being redirected?
- How are mobile workers kept within the phone system?