How Easy Is it For Your Customers to Contact You
Different groups of people prefer different communication methods. Yet so many companies focus on the cost to them rather than convenience for the customer. They forget that making it difficult for a customer to contact you will probably mean they contact the competition instead. For those companies that expect their customers to call them, here are some common mistakes that will almost certainly put off prospects. It could even prevent them from doing business with you. These are the ways to really annoy your customers.
0844 or 0871 numbers:
People are becoming aware that companies using these numbers make a profit on every call they receive – even a sales call. There is a useful website that lists many alternative numbers. Ofcom has a clear calling policy. Companies using these numbers must display the cost of calling them in close proximity to the number, wherever it is displayed. Unfortunately, to date, they have been slow to enforce this.
Choose from the following options:
Companies using “press one for…” options to route calls to various departments may not be aware that this often prompts customers to abandon the call altogether. Even if they stay on the line, they’ll be irritated at having to listen to a number of options. Especially when an automated message eventually tells them to go to the website. How much simpler to speak to someone and say: “can I talk to someone about…”.
Too much information:
No-one likes systems that prompt users to enter their account code or customer number before they talk to anyone and then, having eventually got through to someone, the first thing they are asked is: “can I have your account number?”.
Talk is cheap:
Most irritating of all are the businesses that spend a lot of money playing comforting messages. The messages stress how important your call is to them. If it were that important why not hire more people to answer calls?
A great way to test your system is to pretend to be a customer and contact your own company through different channels – was it a good experience for you? If not, put some thought into how you can improve the experience. If you don’t then your customers could end up contacting your competitors.