It’s no secret that today’s customers have high expectations when they call customer service. The last thing they want is to wait on hold for an extended period. In fact, the number one complaint customers have is not being able to get a live agent on the phone quickly.
Nearly two-thirds of customers think two minutes on hold is too long and 13 percent think any wait time is unacceptable, according to a study released by Arise. Call centers field hundreds and sometimes thousands of calls every day. Meeting extreme expectations like these is nearly impossible, placing call centers at risk for delivering a poor customer experience. Waiting too long on hold is also a common factor in customers never calling a company back according to Voice Response Inc.
Some call centers are changing procedures by implementing a callback feature as an alternative to waiting on hold. Callbacks allow customers to hold their spot in the line without physically remaining on the phone. Their information is entered into a queue, and when it’s their turn, a call center representative reconnects with them by returning their call. Some software even lets the customer schedule what time they want a call-back.
According to ContactBabel’s Contact Center Decision Maker’s Guide, the number of call centers offering this feature is on the rise. There are significant benefits to adding a callback option for customers in your call center:
1. Manage Large Numbers of Calls
Callbacks give you a better way to manage large amounts of incoming calls without having to increase the number of agents you employ. Generally, customers are willing to wait for a call-back, decreasing the need for instant service.
2. Create a Better Experience
Nobody likes to wait on hold, and 75 percent of consumers prefer a callback to waiting. When customers spend too long on hold, they start to get annoyed and upset. Their feeling about the hold time creates a negative perception of your company. By the time they speak with an agent, they can be inconsolable, making the call unpleasant for both the agent and customer.
3. Increase First-Call Resolution Rates
When customers wait on hold for too long, they lose their patience at some point and many times hang up without reaching a customer service representative. By giving them the call-back option, you decrease the number of abandoned calls and increase your first-call resolution rates.
4. Retain Customers
Customers want to work with businesses that make the process simple. Callbacks give them the opportunity to complete other necessary tasks in their day without losing their place or time to talk to customer service. When they can take care of their entire to-do list, they are more likely to stick around for future transactions.
5. Improve Employee Morale
Call center agents are the frontline of a business, fielding and managing incoming calls. While no two days are the same, managing upset and angry customers daily is exhausting. Having a callback option can help create more pleasant customer conversations because they are not stuck on hold for a lengthy time. When agents talk to fewer customers, their attitude will remain friendly and positive.
6. Decrease Call-Hold Expenses
Every minute a caller waits on hold is a minute of telephone time that you pay for. Callbacks decrease the number of wasted minutes you pay for non-productive hold time. Those savings can be passed on to customers in future pricing.