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Small Business Corner
Small Business Owner and Author, Austin, TX
Not having a call transfer feature makes your business look untrustworthy.
As a small business owner myself, I ve gone from the picnic table as a conference room to taking venture capital. In the early days, it s common to take customer calls and have to tell them, Actually, Jimmy does the billing now. Can you call him at 415-555-8008?
And when the company gets bigger and buys a traditional business phone system PBX, you hear your employees ask, How do I transfer a call on this thing?
Our webmaster made a good point once asking customers to dial a separate number is like asking website visitors to make extra mouse clicks. They both lower the conversion rate.
What s a conversion rate you ask?
It s the number of potential customers you have that actually turn into paying customers. Studies in web marketing show that customers are very fickle when it comes to deciding which vendor to choose. In an era where everyone knows a Google search will show us 15 competing vendors (your competitors), it s simply easier to click 2 mouse-clicks to find other choices than to endure a long customer service or sales experience.
My hunch is that asking customers to hang up and dial another number is like asking them to conduct the equivalent of ten mouse-clicks. While in the offline world of phone calls that may mean a lower conversion rate, in the online world that pretty much means death you ve lost that potential customer.
Is there a solution or am I just venting?
Hosted small business phone services offer an easy way for very small businesses (with picnic table and all) to be able to transfer calls professionally like the larger companies who have a true business PBX phone system. But unlike those traditional PBX systems or space-age VoIP phones with LCD screens and 15 buttons, choosing a hosted system that can use your existing phones means no one will ask, How do I transfer calls on this thing again?