How to Avoid Putting Customers on Hold

Man talking on the phone and looking at wristwatch

No customer wants to be kept waiting, especially if they really want to buy something or need help from you. Still, that’s just what many businesses continue to do. Being put on hold will not only frustrate your customers, it will communicate to them that they’re unimportant to you.  Thankfully, this can be avoided with solutions like virtual phone answering service.

What’s the Big Deal About Putting Someone on Hold?

The short answer: Most customers absolutely detest being put on hold. It’s true that some callers will understand that the person they’re speaking with needs time to find a solution, but possibly as many as 60% of customers will take this as a conscious effort on your part to waste their time and simply hang up, feeling like they don’t matter to you.1

How to Avoid Making Them Wait

There are lots of great customer service tips to help you avoid making callers wait. First, they’ll feel a lot better about being placed on hold when they are first greeted properly, and then asked for permission to be placed on hold. You’ll also want to ensure they are given time to respond to the initial greeting and for their permission to hold be granted.

Another solution is to provide them an alternative to being placed on hold, such as giving you an email address or number where they can be contacted later that day. This will communicate that you understand their time is important, and it is effective because it places the power of choice in their hands. However, it requires you to be diligent and ensure their call is returned as promised.

An automated answering system can be ideal in times of high call volume, but be aware that customers can become frustrated when there are too many menu items and by the fact that they may need to leave a message after a lengthy wait.

The Best Solution

Smiling customer support operator at work

Although all of the above can be effective ways at keeping customers on the line, the most effective by far is to not put them on hold at all. How can you possibly accomplish this? With live answering services. This places a real person at the other end of the line, ensuring that your customers always speak with someone who can help them after only a couple of rings.

In being able to talk to a real person right away, your customer will feel like their call really is important. Because it’s a professional receptionist who answers, each and every call is handled in a friendly and timely fashion, with the goal always being to solve the customer’s problem.

AnswerMTI is a nationwide leader in live business answering service, and our operators are 100% U.S.-based. When you choose us, you get all the benefits of a receptionist without the high cost; just pay for the level of service you want. Why make your customers wait? Choose AnswerMTI, and your callers will tell everyone about your stellar customer service. Visit us online or call 844-798-1027 to get started.