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A Better Answer Blog

Small Business Owners Missing Calls and Missing New Business

As a small business owner, you have to be on all the time. A blossoming business needs you at the ready for any crises or opportunities. A new study shows that small business owners are taking calls, even in the bathroom, and yet still missing out on new business.

A UK based call handling solution company commissioned the research as part of a study of 2,000 small business owners and their phone habits.

According to the study, 70% of small business owners admit to having taken a business call in the bathroom to avoid missing out on new business. 18% also say that they have taken a business call at a funeral, and 13% at a wedding.

The research also detailed that the business owners:

  • Receive upwards of 20 calls a day
  • Miss approximately seven calls a day
  • Noted 9% of calls are new business inquiries and the cost of a new lead is worth on average $160

In total, small businesses are losing over $5,000 a year each in missed opportunities.

It's no secret that a small business owner is overwhelmed. A missed call means missed income. Wouldn't you breathe easier knowing a professional answering service was handling your calls so that you could take some time for yourself and your family?

Source: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20130801006323/en/Microbusiness-Owners-Calls-Toilets-Research-Penelope#.VJDiVivF9hx

what to look for in an answering service

Topics: Better Business

Santa is Coming to ABA!

We're excited to have Santa and Mrs. Claus visiting our Plano location as a special free event for our employees and clients!

This is a special time of year and as part of the A Better Answer family, we want to share it with the people who mean the most to us! Come join us and have your picture taken with Santa and Mrs. Claus in their sleigh.

Santa's sleigh will be here on December 22nd and 23rd from 3:00 to 6:00 pm. We will accept donations for Habitat for Humanity if anyone else from the community would like to attend.

Thank you and Merry Christmas from A Better Answer!

Update: We've just received a special phone number so kids can call Santa Claus! Just dial 972-943-4400 for a message from Santa himself.Get a Quote for Free

Topics: News

Roseann Gibbs is Retiring after 34 Years at ABA

Roseann Gibbs has worked at A Better Answer nearly 34 years. It is with mixed feelings that we announce her retirement.

Topics: News

Why Empathy is so Important to Customer Service

There is an abundance of opinions, advice, theories, and even technologies designed around bolstering customer service. These tools are simply trying to materialize and quantify a trait that holds infinite value in customer service: empathy. Continue reading to learn more about how empathy should be a key and central focus in your customer service strategy.

What is Empathy?

While a smile can go a long way, empathy makes leaps and bounds in delivering superior customer service. Regardless of the tools, people, processes, or procedures you put in place, empathy is unparalleled. Empathy is defined as the ability to understand another person's feelings. Empathy can be essentially characterized by the following questions:

  • What are the feelings of the individual I am trying to help?
  • How would I feel if I traded places with the person?
  • Regardless of the rules, is there anything I can or should to do help the customer?
  • What would my expectations be if the roles were reversed?
  • At the end of the day, what action would make this customer happy or satisfied?
    • Is there any reason I can't perform this action?
    • Can I find someone who can perform the action?

Empathy Doesn't Mean Emotional

When dealing with customers, it can be difficult not to get lost in emotions. Contrary to popular belief, empathy absorbs emotions and helps customers get to a place of negotiation instead of complaints. When you address problems with an empathetic point of view, you increase the likelihood you will retain customers and create a vital win-win situation. Empathy shouldn't be confused with sympathy, which is identifying with or even taking on another person's emotions.

  • An empathetic response would be, "I can completely understand why that makes you angry."
  • A sympathetic response would be, "I am angry with the way they notified you of cancellation as well."

Where Did Empathy Go?

In most cases, when companies begin to get really clever and complex, empathy is out the window. In other words, the dehumanization of a significantly human interaction most often happens with metrics, such as:

While indicators can be helpful in guiding an organizations measurable results, don't let the numbers blind you to how well your staff is interacting with your customers and prospects. Metrics like ASA do have a place in determining the quality of a call service, and A Better Answer has good results in those types of measures. Superior customer service that's centered around understanding or empathy, however, may make more of a difference to your customer.

Benefits of Empathy

Undoubtedly, empathetic customer service greatly enriches the bond between you and your customers. For example, when you remember a customers name or are interested in them as a person, they are much more likely to continue to do business with your organization. Treating your customers with empathy or even like a friend will convey their value and importance to you. More so, when empathetic customer service is delivered, the customer develops a better and more welcoming image of the entire corporate brand. Simply put, excellent customer service centered around empathy will ensure your customers will continue to come back and tell their friends and family members.

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Topics: Better Service