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25 Apr 2019
Should I Use Voicemail For My Business?
This is a great question to be asking. Voicemail and answerphones used to be an obvious choice. Even just a few years ago, everyone was happy to use them. But life changes quickly, and the way people make phone calls and thus use voicemail has shifted dramatically to match. There are a few different factors at play in answering the question should I use voicemail for my business.
Of course, the first consideration should be your customers and their expectations. All businesses need to meet or exceed customer expectations to even survive let alone thrive.
Even though technology provides lots of other options, customers are still using the phone a lot. The most common reason is simply that they need or want to speak to a person. Perhaps they feel their issue is too complicated for a livechat or email. Or perhaps they simply want that human interaction.
Whatever their reason, voicemail obviously doesn’t fit the bill because it isn’t a person. This comes back to your customer’s expectations.
Ask yourself the question, when you call someone do you expect them to answer?
Of course, the answer is nearly always yes. There are a few situations when you might hope for voicemail, but those are usually personal rather than business related. To sum it up, when you send your customers to voicemail your business is not meeting their expectations.
All that said, the research shows customers don’t really use voicemail anyway. According to Forbes, about 80% of customers won’t leave a voicemail. Part of the reason is that it isn’t what they were expecting, but another part is they don’t believe it will accomplish anything.
Would you hang up if you reached a business voicemail instead of a person?
This is bad enough when we’re talking about existing customers, but what about prospective customers? Existing customers have a good reason to leave you a voicemail. Nine times out of ten, prospective customers have no reason to leave you a voicemail. Worse than that, they have no reason not to move to the next business on Google.
Another factor to consider is your own business operations. If you’re using voicemail, then someone has to manage it. They have to check it regularly, returning the calls or passing it on to the right person. This is adding more work and points of failure to your processes.
Not just on your end either. What if someone calls you but they weren’t expecting voicemail, they get flustered and forget to leave their name or their phone number. Even if you can return their call you'll be at a disadvantage.
At first glance, voicemail can seem like a good option. It seems like it wouldn’t cost you anything and be a great tool. That’s why “should I use voicemail for my business” is such a great question to be asking. It’s one of those traps. The right answer seems so obvious, but when you dig a little deeper you quickly see it’s not a great choice.
If you want to stop using voicemail and start exceeding your customer’s expectations then email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01604 532 103 and ask for Lesley.
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