In our last blog, we revisited the topic of placing customers on hold and unveiled some of the appropriate steps that customer service reps should take to do it correctly. At first thought, it may seem like putting someone on hold is an easy thing to do – something not even worth discussing. We’d argue that the complete opposite is true! Putting someone on hold is one of those “small” things that can make a big difference.
We pointed out that the asking of permission, the revealing of a timeline and the explanation of what will happen during the hold are all important elements of a proper approach to hold time. As well, we highlighted the importance of hold music in order to keep customers on the line.
But what about when the hold time is over?
Yes, the ways in which you come back from hold times are just as important as how you initiate them in the first place. First things first – begin with gratitude. In our previous blog, we noted that it’s always wise to be on your Ps and Qs. As a customer service representative, it is doubtful that you can say “please” and “thank you” enough. When you return from your hold, yet another opportunity is presented to you.
“Thank you for holding, I apologize for keeping you waiting.”
It’s important to treat your customers’ time with respect. It’s every bit as valuable as your own. When you communicate your gratitude and appreciation, you will be taking a big step in growing your brand’s reputation and strengthening your customer relationships. You’ll notice that the statement does more than just offer thanks. It also offers an apology.
You may be wondering why you should say “sorry”. After all, it’s not like you’ve done anything wrong. Again, this statement falls under the category of “gratitude”. It reiterates your understanding that everyone’s time is valuable. Furthermore, it’s yet another declaration of how important your customers are to you. No matter how quick the hold time was, it’s never particularly pleasant to have to wait.
Consider the alternative way to take someone off hold. “Okay, so I went ahead and looked into that for you…” or any other version of an abrupt re-starting of a conversation just plain sounds weird. It doesn’t acknowledge that someone was waiting for you to continue the conversation. It also doesn’t acknowledge that the waiting itself may have been undesirable.
No one really likes waiting.
But, at the same time, most people recognize that when they call up companies for customer service, there are bound to be times when they will be kept on hold. This provides your company with ideal opportunities to show that it is a cut above its competition. What separates your brand from the rest? It all comes down to how it treats its customers. Hold time – specifically how it begins and ends – is a great way to show your customer service superiority!
Contact MeloTel today to learn more about our cloud-hosted Commercial Phone Services and the many features – Custom Hold Music included – that come with them! Please don’t hesitate to contact us at 1-888-MELOTEL or use the Live Chat feature on our website!