When you choose the right answering service for your business, you can quickly build a better relationship with customers. However, this decision isn’t as easy as just choosing any answering service. There are several types, and you must first narrow down the choices to find the right one for you. Here’s a look at the different types of answering services you might encounter.
Automated Answering Services
Automated answering services are typically used by businesses that need 24/7 coverage. However, this type of service doesn’t provide a live person to answer the phone. Instead, it’s a machine providing options such as business hours, making payments or speaking with a live person.
This service is best for those receiving many general calls after hours. It can help provide answers to general questions but it has very limited options beyond that. Even though this may be a popular choice, it’s not the best type of answering service because it removes the personal touch that customers appreciate by not providing a live person.
Internet Answering Services
Another type of answering service is the internet answering service. This type of service is usually chosen by web-only or e-commerce businesses. These services often provide benefits, such as accessing messages online, order processing and live web chat services.
This type of answering service is very specific to companies with a large amount of activity happening online. They don’t work well for small, local businesses, but if you need a service for an e-commerce site, this may be the best option for you.
Live Answering Services
The best type of answering service for almost any company is a live answering service. This service provides an actual person to answer the phone. This person can take orders, schedule appointments, handle general inquiries, take messages, transfer calls and much more. This is the most popular type of service because a live person provides better customer service than a machine.
With a live answering service, you can extend your business hours and provide a helpful person to handle after-hours calls. This can help to increase your bottom-line and it can be very affordable. It’s also known as a virtual receptionist service.
Call Center Services
A call center answering service provides a solution for those with a high call volume. These services are often used for the busy season, lead generation and general customer service inquiries. They are great for those spending a long time on the phone to qualify a lead or take an order.
If the majority of the calls your answering service will handle are customers responding to an advertisement, a call center is probably the right option. However, if you need somebody that can handle both marketing calls and current customer calls, this option may not be the best choice.
These are the major types of answering services you may run into as you search for the right choice for your company. Make sure you choose a service capable of taking care of all your needs and providing better customer service for all callers.