How to never miss a business call again
Starting out as a small business allows for a more personal approach with customers. However, when the vast majority of small businesses in UK have less than ten employees, it can be a continual struggle to ensure that every interaction is handled appropriately.
In that regard, one of the main concerns for all businesses when it comes to telecommunications is that every call is answered. The concept of being ‘always on’ is increasingly relevant for firms in a fiercely competitive marketplace. Any potential customer is far less likely to leave a voicemail than simply ring your closest competitor.
Small businesses can afford to be more agile in their communications strategy, but often times in the early stages of development they will be understaffed or without a fixed location. This makes dealing with queries or demands a perpetually troublesome issue. Additionally, over 44% of customers prefer to call a landline number, which further complicates your ability to respond to calls when out of the office.
Nevertheless, innovation is constantly pushing the boundaries of what’s possible and, more pertinently for businesses, what’s affordable. The emergence of VoIP technology has revolutionised the way businesses appear and interact with customers. Professional communications features that were previously only available to corporate giants such as IVR/auto-attendant, call forwarding, time of day routing and voicemail to email are now easily attainable and can be configured exactly to meet the operational needs of your business and editable as those needs may change.
Interactive Voice Response (IVR), or a virtual receptionist, is a highly customisable facility that determines how incoming calls should be routed. It’s a highly cost-effective method of boosting efficiency by allowing customers to self-navigate to the correct department and ensure that the right people are receiving the right calls. IVR also eliminates the need for a permanent staff member to be directing calls and thus adds to productivity levels elsewhere. IVRs can be configure based on the day of the week or time of day. This makes applying different numbers for out of hours or operational handovers to teams in different locations pain free.
Call diverting to mobile is another indispensable aspect of VoIP for business. It allows for greater flexibility as the use of the Cloud means at anytime, anyone can login to an admin portal and divert calls to a mobile - the change will be instant. Never lose a potential customer with time of day routing in which a main business number can be diverted to call another team member during specific hours or redirect to an exact voicemail, audio message or contact.
This functionality can go further with a softphone application, which fully integrates the capabilities of a landline onto a mobile - including everything from multiple call support and dial plan support to merge/split calls and call recording. Call diverting is ideal for business owners who need to remain connected on the go.
Significant advances in the areas of broadband connectivity, call-forwarding technology, IVR and maintenance costs have opened up this new world of possibilities for SMEs. The myriad of functionalities VoIP boasts means it can disguise how small a business really is and give it an air of prestige. Customers are none the wiser as to where the person they are dealing with is located. This makes it not only an invaluable resource to any firm on a practical level, but also forms an important aspect of the brand image.
These professional features don’t require PBX hardware as VoIP operates through the Cloud and reduces phone bills with line rental costs eliminated. A user-friendly portal makes it easy to manage users and numbers, which eliminates your third-party frustrations.
Small businesses are renowned for providing a personal, responsive service and should never sacrifice that approach. By adopting the latest unified communications solutions you can remain agile and creative in order to never miss another business call again.