As we move further into the digital age, more businesses and marketers are turning their efforts toward creating exceptional online experiences for their customers.
It’s great to see businesses utilizing the potential of an online platform, but at the same time, it’s a little worrisome.
As businesses move their resources toward digital marketing, many begin to neglect one of the most important pieces of the marketing strategy -- the customer calling experience.
Customer calling experience isn’t as trendy or flashy as digital marketing. It’s not a buzzword or the hottest new strategy.
But providing an exceptional customer calling experience still matters.
- Customers are still calling when they need support.
Sixty-one percent prefer phone over email (60%), live chat (57%), online knowledge base (51%), and “click-to-call” support automation (34%) (via eConsultancy).
It’s true that many customers like to research brands, products, and services online. But when they want or need help, they want to talk a real person.
- Customers are still ordering over the phone.
Last year, 45% of consumers initiated a purchase over the phone (via KissMetrics).
Online purchases are becoming more and more popular, but the phone is still a method for customers to make purchases.
- On-hold messaging creates additional sales opportunities.
Based on information they heard while on-hold, 16-20% of callers made a purchasing decision (via Teleconnect Magazine Report).
A customer on the other end of the line is an extremely engaged prospect. You can use your on-hold message to increase revenue by delivering enticing up-sells and promotions to the warm lead.
- On-hold messages keep callers on the line.
Sixty percent of callers left on hold in silence hang up. (AT&T Study)
Callers hate to be left in silence when placed on hold. If you don’t provide hold music or messaging to callers, they are very likely to hang up.
- On-hold messaging also keeps callers on the line longer.
When there is on-hold messaging, callers will stay on hold up to three minutes longer (Repair Pal).
When someone calls a business, they are highly engaged. But as they wait, they lose interest and becoming increasingly disengaged. Interesting and useful on-hold messaging can hold their attention longer and keep them on the phone.
- Callers want to talk to real people.
Sixty-seven percent of customers have hung up out of frustration of not being able to talk to a real person (HelpScout).
In the digital age, customers can find most of what they need online. So when they call a business, they clearly want to talk to a person. On-hold messaging can help keep callers engaged while they wait, but businesses also need to be able to field calls in a timely matter.
- Customers want a positive experience through all touchpoints.
Three out of four customers say they spent more with a company based on positive customer service, and 68% say they are willing to spend more money with a company that provides excellent customer service (American Express 2014 Global Customer Service Barometer).
A customer’s experience with a brand significantly impacts their desire to do business with them. Businesses need to provide a positive brand experience that flows through every outlet -- including the phone.
- A negative customer experience will send a customer running.
Almost 90% of customers said they stopped doing business with a company after a poor customer service experience (RightNow Customer Experience Impact Report).
Negative customer experiences, such as a poor calling experience, can quickly and permanently push customers away.
9. Businesses spend a lot of money to get inbound calls -- then fail to maximize on the engagement.
Businesses spend 94% of their marketing budgets to get people to call their business, then only just 6% on what happens after that. (KissMetrics)
Businesses put almost all of their marketing resources toward promotions and advertising that get customers to call. Then, they fail to follow through with a plan for what happens next.
Failing to deliver a positive customer calling experience is like building a pavement road to a business, then failing to fill in the last ten feet that lead through the door and up to the cash register.
Businesses and marketers need to start thinking about how they can maximize the calling experience for their customers.
Strategies for improving the customer calling experience include:
- providing on-hold music or messaging to increase caller retention
- delivering scripts that cross-sell products and motivate callers to act
- delivering messaging that builds brand awareness
- working with voice talent that matches the brand and accurately speaks to the target audience
- utilizing a VoIP phone solution that allows communication with callers from outside of the office
- providing auto-attendants and IVRs that quickly route callers to decrease customer on-hold wait times
In this digital age, you may think that customer calling experience is no longer a priority, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.
These nine fact-based stats prove that by improving the customer calling experience you can directly improve the performance of your brand.
Stop neglecting this important element of your marketing strategy or waiting for the importance of calling experiences to fade away. Discover how Spectrio phone solutions can help your business today.