In today’s tough economy, many offices are short-staffed. That means that phone calls go unanswered for many minutes at a time. This can lead to lost sales, appointments, and frustrated customers. Furthermore, many callers will hang up after about four or five rings, and potential new customers will move on to the next number on their list. Having an Answering Service for Small Business can alleviate this problem and give you back valuable time.
Features of Answering Service for Small Business
Call filtering is a feature of some answering services that allows you to take only the calls you want to take. The technology lets you filter out calls from a specific geographic area or block certain numbers. This can help you focus on the important calls instead of wasting time on unwanted calls. For example, you can block spam callers by asking them to leave a voicemail or go straight to your answering service agent.
When using call filtering, you will be able to block callers with restricted caller ID. This feature can be helpful in cases when you aren’t able to view the caller ID. This can be a technical problem or a set up issue on your phone. First, check your phone’s settings. If it says “restricted” on caller ID, unmark the box that says “private.” Restart your phone to fix the issue.
Call filtering can also help you detect unwanted calls. You can use it to prevent spam calls from reaching you and ensure that only your best clients reach you. These features can be set up on individual user accounts or system-wide. The technology works by comparing incoming numbers with a company’s or public database and labeling them as spam or prohibited. For example, Verizon offers an app for mobile phones and a service that helps you manage this feature. The Call Filter Plus app lets you set a custom blocklist and a spam risk meter.
A great feature of Call Filter is that it can block certain numbers automatically. You can select high-risk, medium-risk, and low-risk numbers. You can also choose to send calls to voicemail or terminate them altogether. You can even set up a neighborhood filter, which automatically blocks numbers with the same name.
Security of Client Data with Answering Service for Small Business
Choosing an answering service is an important step in running a business. It can save you time and money. For a consulting business, for example, an answering service can be a great benefit. A missed call can cost upwards of $180. For an attorney, a missed call could mean a lost sale or opportunity. A proactive approach to answering calls can prevent these losses and uncover new profits.
The quality of the service is also very important. While there are a number of excellent options available for phone answering services, choosing a service that meets your expectations can be a challenge. Consider your needs and budget before choosing an answering service. Many companies offer free trials.
A good answering service provider should invest in learning about your business. This way, they can make valuable recommendations and help streamline processes. A good provider will also have insight into your customers’ needs, which is essential for maximizing your bottom line. In addition to answering calls, an answering service should be able to manage and screen emergency calls.
The privacy and security of client data is essential. A good live answering service should have a disaster recovery plan in case your business is interrupted. In addition to that, your live answering service should be updated with latest information and protocols so you can contact them in case of an emergency.
Cost of Answering Service for Small Business
Before hiring an answering service, you should consider the cost. Depending on the plan you choose, you may be charged more per call than you would if you did your own answering. Also, you may need to pay more per minute if your call volume is high. The billing cycle for an answering service varies, so make sure you know the billing cycle and whether it is a month-to-month billing or a yearly billing cycle. In addition, you should choose an answering service that can scale up and down with your business’ needs.
If you are a small business, the cost of an answering service may seem prohibitive. However, most answering services don’t charge more than $100 per month, depending on the call volume. In addition, the service should offer email and voicemail options, so you can take advantage of multiple communication channels. You should also look for an answering service that can integrate with your CRM software.
Another factor in answering service costs is the time it takes to answer calls. On average, your business receives 10 calls a day and each call lasts about one minute and 30 seconds. This translates to an average rate of $0.69 to $1.49 per minute, which makes it more expensive than you might think. Also, some answering services charge extra for additional services that are not included in the basic plan.
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