The solution to consistently positive customer service may be more within reach than many businesses think; to put it simply, customers consistently report that they want to talk to a live person when they make a business phone call. About 80% of customers say that they would prefer to have a phone conversation rather than attempt to navigate a computerized phone system by themselves.
Studies also show that about 80% of customers would rather end a business call than leave a message in a voicemail box. Younger shoppers may be more accustomed to digital phone systems, but older Americans remember a time before pressing “0” to speak to an operator became the norm. Before the advent of computerized phone systems, customers could speak directly to a live telephone representative who would personally handle any orders, questions, complaints, or problems.
In the interest of customer retention, many businesses are returning to phone answering services. Understanding that customers may work during normal business hours and be unavailable to make business calls until offices are closed for the day, more businesses and medical offices are choosing to staff on-call after hours answering services.
With experts projecting yearly losses due to inadequate customer service to top $40 billion, many businesses are engaging phone answering services and putting more emphasis on personalized customer service. While a phone answering service may be located apart from the businesses’ offices or even in another part of the state, customers who are able to speak directly with a live person report higher levels of customer satisfaction.
Disappointed and frustrated with many computerized answering services, customers report that they are ready and more than willing to pay more, if needed, if they were guaranteed an excellent customer service experience every time. In the competitive world of online shopping, businesses that are able to anticipate their customers’ frustrations may prove much more adept at solving their problems and at retaining their business.