It is widely understood — frankly, it is axiomatic by this point — that good customer service is important. However, the enormous impact and influence of customer service on today’s business landscape is truly eye-opening. Consider the following:
- 52% of customers have made an additional purchase from a company after a positive customer service experience (Source: Dimensional Research)
- On average, customers are willing to pay 17% more to do business with companies that have reputations for delivering great customer service. (Source: American Express)
- 61% of customers have switched brands due to poor customer service. And nearly 50% have done so within the last year. (Source: Microsoft)
The moral to this statistical story is clear: businesses that want to compete and thrive must make positive customer experience a top priority. And that is why a growing number of organizations — from small firms to large enterprises — are upgrading to cloud business phone systems.
The Game-Changing Advantages of Business Phone Systems
Here are 4 powerful, proven, and highly profitable reasons why cloud business phone systems are essential for delivering exceptional customer service:
1) Improve Responsiveness
Research by Hubspot has found that 90% of customers rate an “immediate” response as important or very important when they have a question. There are several ways that cloud business phone systems meet this expectation:
- All calls are answered on the first ring by a professional and customized auto-attendant.
- Calls can be automatically routed to the next available employee/agent.
- Calls can be forwarded to mobile phones and landlines.
- A chain of phones can ring in succession (a.k.a. hunt group). Or multiple phones can ring at the same time (a.k.a. ring group).
2) Improve First Call Resolution
One of the most critically important metrics in the customer service world is First Call Resolution (FCR). This refers to the ability of a business to fully address a customer inquiry (sales, support, etc.) in the first conversation. Research by consulting firm SQM Group has found that every 1% improvement in FCR increases customer satisfaction by 1%, and at the same time lowers operating costs by 1%.
Cloud business phone systems feature an auto-attendant. Which is a functional and customizable 24/7 digital receptionist that efficiently connects customers with the right individual/team — so they can get the answers they need on the very first call.
What’s more, cloud business phone systems feature live call transfer. Enabling employees to transfer calls from one device to another. Instead of being forced to ask customers to resume the conversation later. For example, a sales agent can answer a call at her desk at work. Then transfer it to her smartphone as she walks to her car. And then transfer it again to her car’s Bluetooth system. The customer on the other end of the call does not experience any disruption whatsoever during these transfers. It’s completely seamless.
3) Transform the On-Hold Experience from Dreadful to Delightful
Generally speaking, customers dislike — and a few of them outright hate — being placed on hold. However, there are times when placing customers on hold is simply unavoidable. Rather than frustrating customers with “dead air,” cloud business phone systems can be easily customized with messages or music.
- With respect to messaging: customers can learn about special promotions, important product information, hours of operation, or anything else that is relevant to them. Instead of getting bored and frustrated, they are educated and engaged.
- Concerning music: research published in the journal Psychology of Music found that playing music on-hold influenced people to perceive that they spent less time waiting than they really did. For example, while they may have actually waited for 10 minutes on hold, thanks to the psychological effect of the music they felt like it was just 2 or 3 minutes!
4) Optimize Employee Performance
Cloud business phone systems empower supervisors, managers and executives with a wide range of analytics. Useful to both monitor and improve overall customer experience. Some of the metrics include:
- Number of calls during a period of time.
- Number of calls placed on hold during a period of time.
- Average time on hold during a period of time.
- Number of transferred calls during a period of time.
Using this actionable intelligence, decision-makers can adjust staff scheduling, launch recruiting campaigns, establish best practices, ensure compliance, and identify coaching and training opportunities.
In addition, the above-discussed auto attendant feature can proactively inform customers during certain times/days that, due to increased call volumes, they may face longer-than-normal wait times. As such, they may want to call back later or leave a voicemail instead.
The Final Word on Business Phone Systems
Research by consulting firm Walker has found that customer experience has overtaken product and price as the most important brand differentiator. In other words: customers are willing to pay more and accept less selection if, in return, they receive outstanding service.
In light of this trend, it is easy to see why a growing number of companies are upgrading to cloud business phone systems. They know all-too-well that if they fail to properly take care of their customers…then someone else will!
Ready to take your customer service to the next level? Learn more about our all-in-one cloud business phone system. Then call us at (336) 544-4000. Or chat with us during business hours by clicking the chat icon on the bottom of your screen.