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As an answering service, we like to keep all the bases covered. Having the phones manned 24/7 is customer service at its best, but to really live up to the “connect” in AnswerConnect, we want to provide a route for those phone-shy, web visitors too.
With live chat there’s no waiting for a return phone call, no waiting to get connected to the right person, no checking through a spam folder for an email reply. Live chat is immediate, to the point and no personal information needs to be shared in order to connect. Businesses especially love live chat for capturing impulsive or hesitant browsers of their websites.
However, a sales tool is only as good as the person wielding it. If a customer initiates a live chat and has to wait a few minutes for a reply, or worse, receives no response at all, you just lost a customer. Which is precisely why we chose Conversion Support as our live chat team. Conversion Support enables either our virtual receptionists or your business employees to respond to chats, allowing for total coverage. Their seamless customization blends easily into existing websites, maintaining your brand identity.
We asked James Mortensen, of the Conversion Support team, for the best way utilize live chat:
“In my experience, businesses with a longer sales process may benefit the most from live chat as a service, where AnswerConnect agents take the chats. It’s much more scalable for the agents to ask questions and gather information that will get the lead to the right sales department. Our Chat Success Tips blog post contains an example of how asking questions can turn the chat around and create a more engaging experience.
For smaller businesses with a more hands-on approach, we suggest using the live chat control panel to monitor and proactively reach out to leads on the website. The most successful implementations of chat involve job roles that involve direct use of a computer. All types of business can benefit, as long as that business has a website and have people available to chat.”
0 comments | Posted by: Terri on June 20, 2012 | Categories:
We can spend all the money in the world on advertising. We can tell you until we’re blue in the face about our great customer service, professionalism and reliability. But there’s just no better marketing than word-of-mouth. Recently, a potential client reached out to one of our long-time customers, Jim Bolain of Sun Digital Inc. for a referral. Jim was kind enough to share the interaction:
We are considering using AnswerConnect for off-hours answering of our help-desk phone number in support of the global users of our aviation maintenance records management system. They have provided you as a reference. Can you very briefly answer the following questions?
A wholehearted “thank you” to Jim for the high praise and for letting us share! Feedback like this is what keeps us always striving to provide the best service possible to our clients.
Meet Jenny Carter. Jenny has been with AnswerConnect for over three years and lists helping people as one of her passions. “It’s in my genes to want to help people. I interact with people who are experiencing problems addressing their business needs. As a salesperson, I’m able to offer up multiple business solutions to help meet those needs. “
Our salespeople speak daily with medical practitioners, lawyers and business owners of all types; all concerned with one thing: finding an answering service that fits their needs while providing the best possible customer service. Several key questions come up often in these conversations. We thought we’d save you a little phone time by having one of our top salespeople answer the most frequently asked questions:
How does your answering service work?
When you decide to use AnswerConnect, you get a specifically assigned Setup Specialist to help with all of your setup questions. Then you get a Dedicated Account Manager who will work one on one with you your entire time as a client. We give you a toll-free number that is custom to your business. You can use that as your business number, or you can forward your existing lines to us. We then develop/customize a script with you detailing how you want us to answer your phones, the role you want us to play on those calls, any information you would like us to gather—or give to your callers—and the delivery method. We can email/text all of your messages to you, transfer callers, dispatch calls, set appointments, place orders and more. Also included with all of our service plans: live web chat and active response—two incredible features if you have a website.
What is the cost?
Depending on your specific needs, we have entry level plans for automated and live answering which fit almost any budget.
What will your associates say?
This is where we customize your account to meet your specific needs. We want to outline the reasons why a person is calling you. Each call type essentially has its own set of scripting. Based on the specific call type, we’ll build your account according to any information that you’d like us to gather or give to your callers.
What makes AnswerConnect different from the other competitors out there?
We have been in the industry over 10 years. We are a part of The Better Business Bureau, and have a great rating there. We answer our phones quickly, professionally, and are efficient on your calls. And all of our associates are US-based.
AnswerConnect is always on the cutting edge of technology. We offer mobile applications for the iPhone and Android phones, web-based scheduling through our SetMore product, chat support through our Conversion Support software and so many other applications.
While we may not be the least expensive, we are extremely competitive in pricing and definitely one of the best. I sell our service on quality and our desire to form long-term partnerships. We want to be the company that grows with our clients, no matter what service level they’re starting out on.
To speak to a salesperson live, head over to our website. If you have a question you’d like to see featured on our blog, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing from you!
2 comments | Posted by: Terri on May 2, 2012 | Categories:
Chances are, you’ve just asked yourself that. Or better yet, it’s the phrase you’ve typed into the search engine that led you here. Perhaps you’re researching better ways to handle your business calls because voice mail alone isn’t cutting it.
IVR stands for “Interactive Voice Response.” If you’ve ever called your bank, you’ve dealt with one. It’s the automated phone system navigated by pressing buttons or issuing vocal prompts. They’re a popular option for companies of all sizes.
Businesses preferring the human touch of a receptionist may choose instead to go with an answering service. Both systems are dependable ways to handle calls 24/7. Which system is best for your business depends on your needs:
Interactive Voice Response
IVRs have their advantages. They’re cost-efficient and can be as simple or complex as you make them. They feature time-based call routing and visual voice mail. Our recently spotlighted client, Backside Five, uses our own IVR software, Synclio, as a way to provide a 24/7 customer service line for their up-and-coming apparel company while keeping down the overhead costs of a new business.
John Ashton, talk radio host of Those Weekend Golf Guys, rarely sees his desk. He uses Synclio as a business line while on the road visiting clients. Consider going with an IVR if you’re looking for a toll-free business number to route calls and take messages accessible from your web browser or smart phone.
An answering service is the live version of an IVR, with more bells and whistles. Virtual receptionists don’t just take messages and transfer calls, they schedule appointments, place orders, anything an in-office employee could do. Dr. John Tuggle of Wellness and Better Health Chiropractic uses AnswerConnect as his clinic’s appointment desk/messaging center. An answering service is perfect for giving your business the feel of a much larger office or simply providing your customers with the luxury of talking to a live person day or night.
It doesn’t have to be either/or. Many of our clients supplement their IVR with an answering service, giving them the ability to prioritize their calls. The IVR can route high-priority calls—sales or tech support, for example—directly to internal staff and route low-priority or after-hours/overflow calls to the answering service.
Each option has its strengths. You may need to experiment. Choosing a company with the flexibility to grow or scale down with you is the best way to always guarantee a perfect fit with your business and budget.
Great news! AnswerConnect has gone mobile! Now you can download our new app free from Google Play.
The beauty of an answering service is freedom from the desk. You don’t have the time or the staff to man the phones 24/7. It’s safe to assume you’d rather not be stuck in front of a computer managing your answering service either.
That’s why we gave AnswerConnect the mobility to go where you go.
You can view your messages instantly from anywhere and respond quickly thanks to clickable phone numbers and email addresses. And we just added a new feature: status updates. Sudden schedule change? Impromptu meeting? Let us know instantly with a touch of the screen.
You can alert us to your schedule changes as they happen, let us know how you want us to handle them and even set time parameters. We conform to your day.
AnswerConnect Mobile takes all the things you love about our answering service—its flexibility, convenience, customization and excellent service—and puts it in your pocket. Head over to Google Play, download it, take it for a run and tell us what you think!