Picking up the phone is a highly lucrative activity for local businesses. Nearly half of local mobile searches end in a phone call, meaning your phone line is teeming with potential customers. Small businesses in particular cannot afford to miss a potential new business call or sales enquiry.
But most small business owners are only able to answer 38% of calls, and most callers won’t wait more than a minute for someone to answer. What’s worse, 85% of callers who go to voicemail won’t call back, meaning you’ve likely lost a customer. With potential revenue on the line, why do local businesses have such a hard time answering the phone?
Managing unexpected surges in incoming calls is a constant balancing act. Local businesses can’t afford to over-staff receptionists, so the customer experience suffers.
But there’s a better way.
Kendlebell can support your phone staff and prepare you for unknown ebbs and flows in customer calls. It can help you delight current customers and convert new prospects, all while ensuring you never miss another call.
But first, let’s clarify the problem: what is call overflow?
What is call overflow?
Call overflow refers to any incoming calls that your staff can’t answer. It can be the result of not having enough employees, having an unexpected volume of in-person customers, or simply receiving calls outside of business hours.
It’s problem businesses simply have to plan for. If you don’t have a solution for handling call overflow (such as a phone answering service), then these calls either go to voicemail or the caller hangs up. Either way, you’re probably losing business.
Sometimes the causes of call overflow are predictable. For example, during major events like Rugby internationals, restaurants should expect a lot more calls (and have more staff on hand). If you are promoting your business and a promotion gets closer, hair salons and barber shops should plan for more calls and walk-ins. Estate agents tend to be busiest during the summer.
But surges in telephone traffic cannot always be predictable Say, for example, one of your clients gets a glowing review on social media or maybe a key employee calls in sick, your business could be swarmed with phone calls which you wont be able to handle unless you plan for this eventuality.
Kendlebell can support expected and unexpected increases in call volume to allow you capture more business through the phone.
Call overflow solutions
Hiring full-time staff to manage excess calls doesn’t always make financial sense for a business. And not having enough staff is only part of the problem. A front desk receptionist is a huge investment, and they have limited capacity. Plus, when they go home for the day, there’s nobody around to answer inbound calls.
In these cases, outsourcing phone support is a scalable and cost-effective option.
Kendlebell offer a solution for small businesses who can’t get to answer those important calls within a few rings. Preset your telephone system or mobile so that when the call is not answered in say 4 or 5 rings – it automatically transfers to Kendlebell’s Virtual Receptionist team, so every call is answered, and no calls are missed. For a modest monthly fee this can be set up and you only pay for the calls that transfer to the Overflow Call Answering service. See the full range of Inbound Telephone Answering services available from Kendlebell here.
Here are 3 call overflow solutions to reduce your rate of missed calls:
1. Rely on a Telephone Call Centre for Overflow Call Answering
Employ an overflow call centre to handle call volume surges, take the pressure off your team and elevate your customer service. Depending on your needs, call centres can answer incoming calls, take orders or make appointments and take cancellations. Kendlebell can set up call forwarding after a set number of rings or when the phone line is unavailable.
Typically, larger organisations that receive hundreds of calls per day stand to benefit from a designated or outsourced call centre. Some examples include tech companies, financial and legal services companies, retailers and healthcare agencies and professionals.
2. Hire a Virtual Receptionist
Virtual receptionists take on some of the roles of a traditional receptionist. They answer incoming calls, take notes, escalate conversations and make appointments. Kendlebell also learn about your business to help assess the importance of a call. Medical consultants, marketing agencies, real estate agencies and law firms tend to take advantage of virtual receptionists.
3. Use a Business Phone Answering and Message Taking service
For some companies, most callers just need to be routed to another person or department. In these cases, answering services are a great solution. Answering service agents essentially act as a switchboard to send calls to specific team members. They can answer simple, non-technical or industry-specific questions, such as, “Where is your business located?” or “What are your hours of operation?”
Kendlebell offer a Free Trial to businesses who wish to see does this service work for them. see HERE
Pay for service as you receive it.
A typical Business Phone Answering & Message Taking Service such as Kendlebell will invoice on a Pay as you go model. Companies using such services are charged only for the calls taken and messages relayed. The costs are completely variable, and it allows the company to match its costs with its revenue. Kendlebell have a price calculator on their website so you can estimate the monthly costs based on your projected volume. learn more about the costs involved using our unique Price Calculator for outsourced telephone answering for small businesses here
Check out your Call Answering metrics
Outsourcing phone answering to a call centre or answering service might save you from hiring another full-time employee. So, it is advisable to check out some statistics of your own first:
Average Abandon Rate: Abandon rate measures the number of inbound phone calls that are dropped by the customer before speaking to someone. To measure the average abandonment rate, divide the number of abandoned calls by the overall number of calls you’ve received. One thing to note: Most companies leave out any calls that were dropped within the first five seconds.
Average Time to Answer: The average time to answer, or the average speed to answer, measures how long it takes for an agent to pick up the phone. It specifically calculates how long an agent’s phone rings before he or she picks up, not how long your customer was spent in queue.
Average Time in Queue: On the other end of the spectrum, the average time in queue measures the customer’s time spent waiting for someone to pick up the phone. This call centre metric correlates with customer satisfaction, especially given that customers aren’t willing to wait more than a minute for a business to answer the phone.
Using Kendlebell’s Call Overflow service will make your business more efficient at a very reasonable cost.
Kendlebell was set up In Ireland in 2006 and now have 4 offices providing a diverse range of services to the SME market. We provide a range of Outsource Solutions to the Business Community. Kendlebell were awarded the Business All – Star Accreditation for the second time in a row recently.
Among our services are:
Business Telephone Answering / Message Taking.
We provide a personal telephone answering service for your business calls. All your calls are answered by your own PA, giving you peace of mind that you will never miss another new enquiry again. A call answering script is agreed in advance. All your business calls are answered in a professional and friendly manner as if we were part of your team. Our Business phone answering service is delivered at a fraction of the cost of employing staff, involves no administration and gives an excellent first impression. Messages are passed to you instantly by either text-to-mobile, email or you can phone in and speak to your Kendlebell PA at any time.
Virtual Reception services
The Kendlebell team will act exactly as you would expect any receptionist to operate. They will take all incoming calls and transfer them through to the direct dial or mobile of the member of staff sought. If these individuals are not available, they can give callers the option to leave a voicemail or simply take a message which the PA will send on immediately. They will do so immediately by text or email with an end of day report summarising all your calls being sent as well. All of this is done seamlessly and without the company’s customers being aware that you are suing a virtual receptionist from Kendlebell.
Customer Helpdesk / Order Taking
Services include capturing caller’s details and asking qualifying questions to get further information you may require. With each client, we agree call handling instructions to ensure our services benefit your company, freeing up your time to concentrate on running your business. We can link to your CRM /Sales Systems remotely and securely. We also provide cold call screening as part of our phone answering services. Messages will be forwarded on to you immediately by email or text, alternatively we can save and forward these messages at an agreed time. You will also receive a daily email summary of messages.