No matter the industry you’re in, it is likely that a good portion of your business is conducted over the phone. For many business types, a team of employees is necessary to work the phones in order to achieve high sales numbers and high rates of customer satisfaction. To maximize your chances of being recognized as a top provider of excellent customer service, there are some particular phone etiquette rules that you should practice.
Here are five:
1. Always identify yourself at the beginning of each call.
To establish good rapport and eventually strong relationships, each conversation should start off with a personal greeting. When you’re receiving a call, one of the first things out of your mouth should be your name. By identifying yourself, you immediately signify that you wish to create some familiarity and friendliness. This goes a long way in building your brand image. Be sure to use your first and last name to maintain a sense of professionalism on all calls.
2. Avoid slang and filler terms.
It’s easy to lose professional focus when trying to prove you’re cool. Answering the phone with a “What’s up?” is bound to backfire on you at some point. Keep conversations friendly, but never forget that you’re representing a brand. Stick to “Good morning” and/or “Good afternoon” when answering calls. And do your best to have conversations that would read well if the words were written down. In other words, avoiding a litany of “um” and “ah” filler terms is a good idea.
3. Use courteous hold techniques.
In a number of our past blogs, we addressed the importance of placing callers on hold in the proper way. And saying “please hold” is never included in our list of suggestions. Instead, it’s always best to ask permission, give a timeline and offer a thank you-slash-apology when it’s all said and done. “May I ask you to please hold for a minute while I check into that for you?” followed up with a “Thank you for holding, I apologize for the delay” is a healthy putting-someone-on-hold combination.
4. Let your callers hear your smile.
Also something we’ve blogged about a number of times, the importance of smiling is something that should never be underrated. “Smile before you dial” should be a motto of yours. Smiles can be heard through the phone. When smiling, your tone of voice just can’t help but be more pleasant. Your friendly and affable tones will go a long way in developing a strong customer service reputation for your business.
5. Eliminate background noise.
The crumpling of paper, the jingling of keys and a conversation taking place behind you – What do these three things have in common? They can serve as distractions to the person on the other line. They may not sound all that loud to you, but they can be amplified through your headset and/or phone receiver. Try to keep all noise that is not the actual sound of your voice to an absolute minimum. This will help for your callers/leads to stay focused on what you have to say.
Here’s hoping these phone etiquette tips will help! We know, for a fact, that what will also help is the taking advantage of MeloTel’s cloud-hosted Commercial Phone Services. For more information, please don’t hesitate to contact us at 1-888-MELOTEL or use the Live Chat feature on our website!