Communication is key in every business. You need to remain in touch with your suppliers, with your customers, and with other affiliated parties within your business if you really want to make your company grow. Unless you communicate effectively with the parties related to your business, you are very likely to go out of commission within a few months or so. In this day and age, technology has made effective communication very easy. Whereas it used to cost a fortune to contact people from other parts of the globe, the wonders of technology now allow you to call almost for free.
As competition has increased in the corporate landscape, businesses are looking for different ways by which they can distinguish themselves from other companies operating in the same region. However, this is much easier said than done. One of the key things that most customers look for in any business is the customer service. Having a good product is just not enough anymore. Many companies that were offering amazing products, but had poor customer service, have failed in the past few years. One of the main reasons for this was the fact that it didn’t take long for other businesses to copy their products, and because they offered a better standard of service, customers quickly flocked over to those businesses.
Think about the last time you bought a product from an unknown brand. The first thing that you would want to check is whether the place is well-established or not. You want to check their website and ensure that there are different means by which you can contact the company. Some of the world’s leading organisations and corporations spend millions each year, just to ensure that customers are able to get the best service.
There are two major reasons why communication is so important with your customers. First of all, what if a customer wants to ask a few questions about your products before making a purchase? If a potential customer has a few queries about your business, they will obviously want to ask you a couple of questions before they give you their money. However, if you are not available on time to assist the customer, they will just take their business to another company.
Secondly, you need to maintain effective communication with those people who have already bought your product. If a customer has already trusted you and purchased something from you, they will expect quality service in case something isn’t working properly. If you are simply looking to take the consumer’s money without offering quality service in return, it won’t be long before your business is shut down.
The Problem with Small Businesses
However, one of the biggest issues that many small businesses face is that they don’t have enough capital to invest on setting up a customer service department. Almost all of the working capital owned by small businesses is usually tied up in fulfilling customer orders. As a result, they are unable to invest any money in setting up a new department.
After all, setting up a consumer service department is not as simple as it looks. You will need to allocate some space in the office and will also need to purchase an extensive array of equipment. This includes new furniture, telephones, and computers. On top of that, you will also need to hire new employees, which are likely to become a serious burden on your payroll. Instead of spending so much money on setting up a consumer service department, why not utilise that money and put it into your business?
A great option available to most small businesses is to hire the services of local telephone answering companies, such as Message Direct. These companies offer an extensive range of services to small and medium-sized businesses who are unable to afford setting up their own customer service departments. Here are some of the key services that these companies offer.
You will need to have a receptionist at all times during business hours. Whenever a customer or a supplier or anyone else calls on the business helpline, you should have somebody available to answer the phone. Unfortunately, most small businesses can’t afford to hire a receptionist. However, you can contract a telephone answering service to provide you with virtual receptionist services. They only charge a fee based on the number of calls that are taken by the company.
If you are taking the whole team out, or are shut down for the day, you can contract the company to take down any messages for your business. If a call is received, the company will take down all messages in a professional manner, and send them to you on the next day, so that no communications are missed between you and your customers.
Even if you have a small-time call answering department in-house, you might need emergency services in case your business hits the limelight. If your products have become popular, or your business becomes popular for any reason, calls are going to start flowing in. If you are able to answer all queries, you are likely to get an influx of new customers. However, if most calls are missed, most people aren’t going to have a very good impression of your company.
From time to time, you should also call customers who haven’t ordered in a while. This will help you keep people interested and show them that you care about their business. If you don’t have enough staff to help you with the outbound services, you can also outsource them to a telephone answering company.
These companies have a professional team of callers who know how to talk to customers without breaking cover. They will ask about their experience and also show different products to your customers to keep them engaged and interested. Rather than spend so much money on setting up a department in-house, it’s generally better if you hire the services of a telephone answering service.