You know how the story goes: You’re running a special promotion, and suddenly, your phones are ringing off the hook. Or, maybe there’s a blizzard on Christmas Eve and customers are frantically calling with plumbing or HVAC emergencies.
Whatever the reason for a spike in customer service calls, and regardless of the industry you work in, the scenario is almost always the same: When you’re unavailable to current or potential customers, they’ll take their business elsewhere. Of course, you already have a ton of responsibilities on your plate as a business owner, and you can only stay on top of so many things at once—and that includes overflow calls.
That said, every call is an opportunity to grow and enhance your business, which is why it’s important to ensure calls are always answered and never missed. Here’s an overview of the importance of handling a high call volume, plus four steps you can take to better manage yours.
Importance of Handling High Call Volume
Being available for your customers when they need assistance is essential in order to grow your business and schedule more appointments. Whether it’s due to a high call volume you’re not equipped to handle or a call that comes in after-hours or over the weekend, missing existing or potential customer calls is a surefire way to miss out on opportunities. In fact, missed calls are the No. 1 reason why most service companies lose business.
Consumers today have high expectations when it comes to customer service, meaning it’s essential you’re readily available to resolve issues, answer questions, and schedule appointments. According to HubSpot Research, 90 percent of customers rate an immediate response as being important or very important when they have a customer service question. What qualifies as an immediate response? In the same survey, 60 percent of customers defined immediate as 10 minutes or less.
In addition to meeting your customers’ expectations, knowing how to effectively manage your overflow calls is also important for handling your customer service team’s workload and avoiding burnout and potential turnover. And because turnover already tends to be higher in customer service roles, avoiding it is a clear win for your business.
4 Ways to Manage Your Call Overflow
Trying to figure out the best way to manage your overflow calls when the phones are ringing like crazy? Here are four tips to help you deal with high call volume:
1. Make smart use of social media channels.
Social media channels are a mainstay in customer service today and can serve as an excellent secondary queue to route your overflow calls. By making smart use of platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, you can decrease the number of overflow calls and improve your response rates. Plus, modern consumers expect social media messaging and live chat customer service options. Last holiday season, two-thirds of global shoppers messaged a business on social media for support. Since holidays are often an incredibly busy time for most companies, it’s really a win-win.
2. Always follow up with your customers.
Never leave a customer hanging, even when you can’t help them out right away. Instead, make it a point to always follow up with any callers you missed after-hours or due to overflow calls to resolve customer issues in a timely manner. To make the process easier, consider using a callback service powered by technology. This way you can still act quickly and hopefully avoid missing opportunities to grow your business and improve the customer experience.
3. Offer your customers self-service options.
Customers today both want and expect options. In many cases, when you’re unable to resolve an issue quickly, it could have been addressed immediately—and by the customer themselves. Offering a variety of self-service features, such as online appointment scheduling and helpful educational resources, will help you reduce your overflow calls while also giving customers what they want most: convenience, efficiency, and instant access.
4. Partner with a live answering service.
A 24/7 call answering service is uniquely equipped to do the heavy lifting by handling your overflow and after-hours calls, ensuring you never miss an opportunity to gain business or offer top-quality customer service. Wondering how it works? When your call volume spikes or you’re unavailable on a holiday or over the weekend, your customer service calls are routed to your live answering service, where they can take the reins and ensure you never miss a beat.
How a 24/7 Call Answering Service Can Help
Investing in a professional call answering service can be a game changer in the service biz—especially when you’re experiencing growing pains that can prevent you from staying on top of overflow calls. Partnering with a live answering service such as Dexcomm can help:
- Guarantee you never miss out due to overflow calls.
- Improve your customer satisfaction ratings and reviews.
- Reduce number of repeat calls due to lack of availability.
- Schedule more appointments to grow your business.
- Cut down on customer hold times/abandoned rates.
- Reduce staff workload to minimize burnout/turnover.
- Ensure continuity with 24/7 customer service.
Interested in partnering with an answering service to help you stay connected to your customers, even during your busiest times? Get in touch to learn about Dexcomm’s overflow answering service and how it can help you handle your excess calls.