As a business owner you’re always trying to find a balance between doing the work you’ve already got, and being available to answer the phone to new business calls.
But answering the phone when a call comes in isn’t always possible when you’re out at a job, or sat in a meeting, or travelling. This is a problem and does not help your business.
Not answering the phone to a potential new customer can easily lose you a sale. Sending a paying customer to voicemail doesn’t leave the best impression.
A virtual receptionist can take away many of these stresses, especially today when more people are working remote.
A virtual receptionist carries out much the same call answering and diary management tasks as a regular receptionist or assistant, except they work remote and also work for other clients.
If you’re struggling to keep up with the demand on your business, here’s a few benefits you could get from investing in a virtual receptionist.
1. Add some professionalism to your call answering
Investing in a virtual receptionist means your business calls are answered professionally and promptly, and leaves a better impression on customers.
When you first sign up to using a virtual assistant they’ll work with you to find out how you want certain calls to be dealt with. You’ll always get the right information passed on so you can deal with enquiries properly.
2. Put real people to the face of your business
We’ll have all seen the news about the rise of chatbots and website chats as we work remote. But really, most customers still prefer to speak to a real person, especially if they’re looking for service or have a question.
Chatbots can be great, but are also limited.
A virtual receptionist provides that human-to-human connection between your business and your customers and leads.
Instead of getting pre-set responses your customers will get a personalised service from a real person.
With so many businesses now trying to “sound human and authentic”, what could be more authentic than a real person on the end of the phone?
3. Get a consistent and reliable phone answering service
Virtual receptionists are great for one person businesses who can’t always answer the phone.
But they’re also highly effective in office environments when you want to make sure all calls are dealt with consistently.
Anyone who’s worked in an office knows how frustrating it can be when employees don’t answer the phone quickly or don’t answer it in the way you expect.
Or, worse, when they don’t collect all the relevant information in a message.
A virtual receptionist removes all these problems and help by creating a consistent answering service across your business.
You can set the script and identify the information you need collecting for each type of call.
Your virtual receptionist will take care of the rest.
Plus, it creates a barrier between incoming calls and your employees so they can get on with work and only be passed the calls they need to deal with, rather than constantly answering the phone.
4. Earn and save more money for your business
Hiring a good receptionist full-time will cost your business a lot of money.
The average receptionist salary in the UK is £19,000 a year according to totaljobs.com but the upper end of the scale can easily reach £30,000.
Do you have that kind of money to invest?
Especially if you’re still early in your business and aren’t taking as many calls.
If you decided to hire a full-time receptionist you’d be paying them a salary no matter the volume of calls they’d be taking. Plus you’d have to train them.
With a virtual receptionist, you only pay for the time you use them, and that capacity can be easily scaled up or down depending on the number of calls coming in.
This can be particularly useful for dealing with seasonal peaks.
5. Get much needed admin and diary management support
A virtual receptionist doesn’t just help your business with customer calls.
They can also help you manage your day, arrange and book meetings, and make sure you don’t accidentally double-book your time when you’re out and about with no access to your calendar.