Proper Telephone Etiquette can Increase Sales

Good customer service is a necessity for business because many times it  is your first level of contact.  This contact can be through your assistant or receptionist who answers the phones, respond to emails, etc. For many customers, the decision to conduct business with your organization is largely determined by the impressions presented during this initial contact.  This is why it is essential to leave a positive first impression that makes the customer  want to purchase your goods and/or services. Here are a few phone etiquette tips that makes for good customer service to give your company an edge over your competition:

1.)  When answering your phones, consistently greet callers with a pleasant tone.

By the end of your greeting, the caller should know who he/she is speaking to, confirmation of the company contacted and an invitation for assistance.  An excellent example of such a greeting is: “Hello, thank you for calling Phenomenal Image.  My name is Nancy Gettridge.  How may I assist you today?” This creates a congenial tone that opens the dialogue for the customer to want to engage further.

2.)  Ask the caller his/her name and use his/her name throughout your conversation.

After greeting the caller, ask the caller his name.  By asking the caller for the name, there is personal connection and indicates a subtle display of respect to the caller.  Following the same example as above: You:  Hello, thank you for calling Phenomenal Image.  My name is Nancy Gettridge.  How may I assist you today? Caller:  Hi.  I just viewed your website and I want to get more information on your services.” You:  Absolutely.  Before we get started, my I get your name? Caller:  Yes, my name is Karen Williams. Thank you, Ms. Williams.  Natalie Porter is one of our consultants who will be able to provide you with the information you need… Just by asking the caller’s name, you have engaged the client as well as received information to pass on to the next level of contact to connect with the client.

3.)  Always ask for the caller’s permission to hold before transferring (if applicable) and let him/her know approximately how long the caller will hold and then beat that time.

By asking the caller if he/she would like to hold further shows that you are respectful of his/her time. Back to the example: You:   Thank you, Ms. Williams.  Natalie Porter is one of our image consultants who will be able to provide you with the information you inquire.  May I place you on hold for approximately 20 seconds while I connect you? Caller:  Yes, that’s fine. You:  Thank you Ms. Williams.  Please hold while I transfer your call.  Have a great day! Before you transfer, announce to the next level of contact the name of the caller and nature of the call.  This will save the caller time and provides a seamless transition because the caller will not have to reiterate why she is calling and it prepares the level of contact for the conversation. To a customer, the person who answers the phone or responds to initial contact is the company.  These three steps in greeting the caller will signify to the potential customer that you are a company that values their customers and offers a glimpse as to whether the customer can expect exceptional service.  This can make all the difference in increasing your sales.  Good customer service never goes out of style and will help your company stand out from the competition.

READ  Wishing You a Merry Christmas!

How does your company greet your callers? 

Do you see areas that you may need to improve? 

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Nancy Kirk-Gettridge is founder of Phenomenal Image, an executive development firm focused on helping her clients gain confidence and take control of their careers. Confronting workplace challenges and her own limiting beliefs, Nancy is committed to helping her clients see themselves as qualified leaders and risk-takers. Nancy frequently writes about resolving gender bias in the workplace. Key topics include career management, leadership training/development, succession planning and overcoming workplace issues.

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