Recent studies have indicated that people will spend 9% to 10% more with companies that they believe provide excellent customer service. That extra expenditure can add up to make a big difference in revenue, especially in today’s economy. So it makes sense that every business would strive to deliver excellent customer service.
The downside is that while up to 80% of businesses believe they are doing just that, only 20% of their customers share that opinion. Alternate Access can help you gain an edge in creating and maintaining customer loyalty. Our VoIP phone systems can help you enhance customer service, providing today’s customers the instant assistance they crave – and making you a customer service superstar.
Customer Service Starts with Easy Navigation
It may seem like common sense, but a properly implemented auto attendant is the first step to providing excellent customer service. Even if your business uses a receptionist to answer all incoming calls there are times when, during evenings or when call volumes peak, customers will reach your auto attendant. When they do, your auto attendant should help them locate the correct person or department quickly and easily.
At installation, Alternate Access verifies that your auto attendant provides easy options for your customers. We also encourage you to make sure all employees record their own voice titles, so that they can be located in your company directory via either first or last name. A proper voice title, recorded in the employee’s voice, also confirms to the caller that he or she has reached the correct person.
Your auto attendant can be the first impression your business makes. Helping customers easily navigate your business lays the foundation for an excellent customer service experience.
Customers Crave Accessibility, So Make Your Business Accessible Depending on the Alternate Access phone system, users have the ability to use call forwarding and/or call routing to enhance their customers’ experience. Both increase the success of first-time connections with callers and reduce instances of phone tag.
Call forwarding sends all of a user’s incoming calls to another phone number, which is a great way to avoid missed calls when working in the office but at another desk. Calls come directly to the number to which you are forwarding, such as the conference room or another desk. Calls can also be forwarded to phone numbers outside of the office, such as cell phones.
Call routing is available on select phone systems, and allows users to maintain the call-handling capability of the system no matter where the call is routed. It also offers the option to have the system locate a user at more than one location. Like call forwarding, when a call is routed to another number, it also goes directly to the new location. In this case, however, if the user needs to transfer the caller back to someone in your office, that can be accomplished as well.
Additionally, some systems include functionality to create a routing list that directs the phone system to call a user at multiple locations, including a desk phone, mobile number or other external numbers, simultaneously or in sequence. Callers can be given the option to wait while the system locates the user or to leave a message at any point during the search.
Certain businesses may also consider implementing skills-based call routing to up the customer service ante. Skills-based call routing enables managers to automatically send callers to an available employee or call center agent with the right skills to best handle that caller’s needs. For example, Spanish-speaking customers could be directed only to employees who speak Spanish. Or, all calls from specific customers could automatically route to the corresponding account managers. The caller reaches the employee most capable of quickly and correctly handling them.
Using some or all of these features gives customers the feeling that your business is more accessible, as well as putting them in contact with the “expert” at your business that can manage their needs or requests quickly.
Customers Feel Like VIPs When Information Is at Your Fingertips
Nothing takes the place of being prepared when a customer or prospect calls you. Alternate Access phone systems enable users to see the caller ID information for incoming calls, either via the phone screen or a computer screen pop. That information alone may allow employees to pull a file needed for the customer or to alert another employee that their expertise may be needed during the call.
In some cases, Alternate Access has implemented custom projects integrating CRM and accounting applications with our customer’s phone systems to help provide their customers a top-notch experience. By linking a phone system solution to a CRM, additional screen pops that provide vital information about the caller to the agent or employee can be available. Screen pops are especially helpful, but not limited to, call centers, where they can indicate whether the caller is a first-time customer or a repeat customer, what products the customer has purchased in the past and even whether they have an account balance with your company.
Having useful customer information at your fingertips helps you anticipate a customer’s needs and assist them more quickly and professionally – leaving them satisfied with your business and more likely to return.
Following these best practices will help ensure your customers reach the right person the first time – every time! To learn more about how an Alternate Access phone system can help your business drive customer loyalty, contact us today at 919-831-1860.