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Written by
Katy Ratican
22 Jun 2021
8 minutes

How to turn your missed calls into business opportunities

Everything a business owner needs to know to reduce their missed business calls and turn them into opportunities
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For any business, missed calls are missed opportunities. It could have been a potential client or customer who needed their queries addressed immediately. But since you were occupied, those queries went unanswered. A second phone line app for business is an effective solution to have fewer missed business calls.

You don’t need to be an entrepreneur to know the importance of missed calls. These days, whenever you come out of a movie or a meeting, that’s one of the first things you check – whether someone has called or texted you. But a second line for work will ensure that while you may have missed the call, the client or customer knows that you’ll be getting back to them as soon as possible.

The pandemic has changed the way we work. With many workforces now working from home for at least part of the week, it is more important than ever to have a robust phone answering system in place. For every call missed, the potential for revenue is lost. As many small and medium-sized businesses have had to cut resources in recent months, successfully dealing with customer communications and driving new business leads has become more difficult. The good news is, there are a number of ways that business owners can turn missed calls into opportunities.

The business impact of a missed call

A missed call isn’t just a missed, one-time conversation. You are missing out on the opportunity to grow your business. If you miss the first call from a potential new client, it will be more difficult to get a second chance. It is easier for that caller to simply dial one of your competitors. Which, as a small business owner, is definitely not the outcome you want.

Every time the phone rings, you must consider the lifetime value of a customer, rather than just a one-off conversation or order. Not to mention the opportunities for referral business if your clients are happy with the service you’ve provided. Safe to say, there is a lot at stake when answering business calls and you should do all you can to ensure it’s a professional experience.

The cost of missed calls

  • Potential sales: That call could have been from a new customer or client who was in a hurry. Beyond a missed call, it’s missed sales and revenue for your business.

  • Customer dissatisfaction: When a customer or client calls you, it could be to seek redressal. They may already be discontented with your product or service and a missed call may make it worse, forcing them to stop doing business with you.

  • Looks unprofessional: Not hearing from you or your team can feel deeply unprofessional to a client. This will stop them from giving you further business and make them question your commitment.

  • Negative reputation: Customers don’t call or text each other if they’re dissatisfied with your services. They’ll take it online and leave a negative review, which will damage your brand reputation.

  • Regulatory issues: What if it’s someone from a regulatory authority who needs to immediately get in touch with you? Missed calls can mean a loss of business and even regulatory problems.

Profit potential versus profit revenue

One of the best ways to really grasp the cost of a missed call is to better understand the differences between profit potential and profit revenue.

Profit potential is the opportunity for a product or service to make money (revenue). For instance, if you are a tradesperson and have the necessary time and skills to complete X calls a day, you can easily calculate your potential profits per annum.

For your profit revenue, simply subtract expenses from your profit potential and you’ll see how much revenue is possible for the year. This is where missed calls must be factored in: unless you aim to take every call through the year (which, let's be honest, is impractical at best), the impact on business revenue is clear.

While missing a call might not seem like a big deal in the early stages of your business model, it can have significant consequences over time that can dent your company's earning potential. Missed calls are resulting in you losing potentially loyal, lifetime customers and leaving you unable to grow your business.

Why do you miss calls?

In order to find a good solution to your missed business calls problem, it's worth understanding the common causes of missed calls. There are many reasons why missed calls happen, such as:

A lack of staff availability
. Your employees may be overwhelmed with work, meaning there aren’t enough staff to answer calls, and so they roll over to voicemail. Even if you have the resources in place to answer phones, gaps in covering the phones will still most likely occur.

Primary focus on digital. Another reason missed calls occur is that businesses focus solely on digital communications rather than phone calls. However, as has been stated previously, most business communication still takes place over the phone and so it would be remiss of you to ignore this popular line of communication.

Technology fails
. Sometimes, the tech can be to blame for missed calls. Without the right infrastructure in place, employees can quickly become swamped. Staff may rely on voicemail to cover them, without giving much thought to the impact such a decision can have on your brand reputation.

24/7 expectations
. Business communication is no longer limited to traditional business hours. Your competitors might be available 24/7 – and your customers might expect the same from you. As your team heads home after their working hours, it's unreasonable to expect them to take after-hours business calls, so some calls will go unanswered. Finding a good work-life balance is important, but after-hours missed calls needn't be banned outright.

Phone calls are the preferred method for customers to get in contact when they need something done fast. Therefore, the last thing you want to do is leave a call unanswered. A missed call leaves issues unresolved and frustrates your customers, which will likely mean that they will take their business elsewhere. So what is the solution?

How to reduce missed calls the conventional way

Every day, businesses miss out on potential sales and growth opportunities due to missed business calls. However, with some organisational changes and the right tech, you can significantly reduce the instances of those missed opportunities.

  • Dedicated resources: You could dedicate someone to attend to all business calls. This frees you from the need to share your personal number with customers and clients.

  • Call centre: You could think bigger and enlist the services of a call centre, whether within your business country or further afield. You can train them on the business responses to common queries and integrate them with your internal systems. This will help them know the status of orders or payments, for example.

  • Email: Another way is to rely on email for your communication. You should convey to customers, clients and business associates that they should use email to get in touch with you.

Second phone line apps: How to reduce missed calls the tech way

Web-based phone lines are a technology-enabled solution for business owners to reduce their missed calls. These second-phone line apps for businesses are easy to set up, inexpensive and feature-rich. As a business owner, you should consider a second line app for work not just for the problems it solves but the additional advantages it provides.

  • Call forwarding: If you’re busy and can’t answer the phone, the app can forward the call to a predetermined response. So, if a client can’t reach you directly regarding a query about an invoice, they’ll be able to contact someone in accounting (for example) and get immediate clarification.

  • Voicemail to text: If a client or customer wants to contact you urgently but can’t reach you, they’ll be able to leave a voicemail. But what makes a second phone line app intuitive and effective is its ability to convert voicemail to text. If a consignment is late and the vendor can’t get through to you, the text of their message will reach you and others.

  • Auto-reply texts: Sometimes, you don’t need to manually clarify things. You could automate the response and save time for you and others. A second phone number for business can enable you to create auto-reply texts to common queries. For example, if a customer wants to know about your opening hours or returns policy, you can set up auto-reply texts to quickly answer these common queries.

  • Professional response: Among the many reasons you should consider a second phone number, one of the most important is that it adds a professional touch to your business. When clients and customers know that their queries can get quick answers or be routed to other team members, they’ll trust you more. That can increase your average customer lifetime value.

Get started in minutes

Customers may consider missed work calls a sign of inexperienced, hurried business operations. With a second phone line app for business, there’ll be fewer missed business calls and missed opportunities. The best part? You can get started in a matter of minutes and give your business a highly professional makeover.

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