Scan every industry and it is undisputed, every business has a list of goals to provide impeccable service, harness every opportunity to increase revenue, maximize growth, and look professional while doing it all. A few things can directly help businesses accomplish all of this with little effort. One of those is incorporating the use of a professional answering service. Consider the top 7 reasons why your Pittsburgh business should add a virtual answering service to your business operations.
- Affordable and Cost-Effective
One of the reasons many small and midsize businesses fail in the first five years is due to the overwhelming operational costs associated with running a business. Regardless of the size of a business, reducing overhead costs is a great way to leverage finances. An answering service is cost-effective. Outsourcing to an answering service eliminates the need to hook up specific telephone services for your business, purchase and install telephone hardware and software, and attract and hire the right receptionist. All of this costs money and can put a dent in any start-up capital or operating budget.
- 24/7/365 Availability
An in-house receptionist can be a great fit in many cases. However, life happens and worrying about whether your key customer-facing employee can make it to work and make it on time every day can be nerve-racking. A simple flat tire, family emergency, or illness can throw your operation out of alignment. Just one day can potentially affect service levels and the bottom line. Working with a fully staffed contact center means there is always a live team to answer your business line and you’ll never go a day without a receptionist.Answering services staff live representatives to answer your business calls 24/7/365. This means you can provide your customers with around-the-clock service without having to take personal calls after hours or keep your business open later. Adding an answering service allows you to have a work-life balance and peace of mind that someone is always ready to answer a customer’s call, take a message, or complete a list of basic or tailored tasks you’ve outsourced to them. Availability is also important in providing disaster backup service in areas like Pittsburgh where inclement weather can affect a business's ability to be physically open or can affect communication with customers.
- Ability to Capture More Opportunities
Lost opportunities equal lost revenue. If your business mirrors the 9-5 model so do most of your customers. Many customers fit errands in before or after work and possibly during their lunch break. This means your customers are doing their discovery and often making buying decisions during those hours. If your business is closed during those hours, you're unable to capture those opportunities in real-time. If a customer is calling during normal business hours but your staff is busy on other calls and unable to assist, this becomes part of your customer's unmet expectation and a lost sales or service opportunity for your business – both of which can negatively affect your bottom line and the overall customer experience. An answering service provider can take customer service calls, help place product orders or direct your customer to your appropriate in-house staff member who can help finalize their buying decision. No more missed calls, or missed opportunities when you partner with a professional answering service.
- Allows Your Staff to Manage Their Time
Outsourcing phone duties to a third-party answering service or virtual receptionist allows your staff to redirect their focus to more pertinent or profit-generating tasks for your business such as training, product development, marketing, and direct sales. Hiring an answering service provider can augment your current staff by directing only specific types of calls to the answering service or acting as backflow to help manage in-house call volume.
- Creates a Professional Image
Companies strive for a polished and professional reputation. Using an answering service allows small businesses to compete with larger entities that can afford their own in-house receptionists or call center. When a customer calls your business, and a professional virtual receptionist answers on the other end, it gives the illusion of the size and often the level of competency of your business creating a polished image for your business and a positive impression on your customer.
- Offers Flexibility
Every business is unique. An answering service provides customizable options to fit various businesses from basic to complex. Whether a company needs just after-hours message taking, weekend coverage, backflow, or full call center service, there are affordable options available to suit every industry, business size, and budget.
- Provides a Personal Touch
Technology such as chatbots and automated responders have their place in a modern business but many of the features are templated and are unable to answer more complex questions, recognize accents, or make it so it takes longer to type a question than ask it directly. Customers appreciate a personalized approach and remember companies who offer the convenience of speaking to a live representative every time they call.
Whatever industry you’re in, a professional answering service like Pittsburg Telephone Answering Service can be a time- and cost-efficient way for you to handle a variety of callers. If you think your business could benefit from an answering service, give us a call today. We’ll be happy to help!