Home / Blog / Automated Answering Services vs Virtual Receptionists: A Comparison You Should Know from the Experts
Automated Answering Services vs Virtual Receptionists: A Comparison You Should Know from the Experts
How much time does it take to answer calls or emails? If you’re using an automated answering service, you might be surprised at how long it takes to get through to someone.
An automated answering system allows callers to leave messages without talking directly to a human being. This saves both parties time and money, but it also means that the person receiving the letter has no idea who they are speaking to.
Virtual receptionists or virtual phone assistants offer similar services but allow callers to speak to real live receptionists. They can provide information about the caller, such as their name, phone number, email address, etc. The virtual phone assistant can even transfer the call to another agent if necessary.
Virtual phone assistant or automated answering service? Which is the best choice for your company to keep customers satisfied? Continue reading to know more.
Are Call Answering Services Necessary?
You should decide whether or not you need a service for your business before choosing which options to pursue. Your business phone system may be necessary for dealing with customers, or it may only be used occasionally for new inquiries. Many people choose to use a call-forwarding service. You can use a service that routes office calls directly to your cell phone if you are a tradesperson who relies heavily on it and is constantly on the go.
Although this system works well in some situations, the responsibility for returning calls ultimately rests with the user. In either case, if you can’t guarantee that someone is always available to answer the phone, we advise setting up some answering service. Callers might get ignored if you are in the middle of something important. According to an article by industry expert Matt Rayner, his research indicates that each missed call for one company costs about £43, or $50 per missed call. This varies depending on your economic sector, but it helps to emphasize the point.
“Each missed call for our customers at this time is the equivalent of a loss of £43”, according to Matt Rayner.
Automated Answering Services: Do You Need One?
Most customers prefer a phone answering service team’s live receptionists over automated messages. Small business owners must choose in this regard, though. There are numerous instances of businesses that you can contact and who will still connect you to an automated answering service. Is this appropriate for your own company? The automated phone system is sometimes called a “phone tree” because each user selection corresponds to a tree branch.
Automated Telephone System
“Phone tree” is an automated telephone system that routes callers based on their choices and the numbers they press on their handset.
Users can use the keypad or occasionally their voice to enter data and make decisions. They ought to receive the assistance they require in the end. This could take the form of an automated message or offer users the option to leave their contact information so that someone can call them back when they are available. Automated answering services can also filter the call flow of your business. The caller does not need to speak to a live person if the auto-attendant phone system can answer their question.
Callers can be directed to an employee by the automated phone answering service if they encounter a “dead end” or require additional help. Some human interaction is needed, but not as much as if you handled all the calls answering yourself. An automated answering service has some apparent advantages over not having one. You can make sure of the following things by setting up an automated phone answering service:
- No client has to deal with having their call information ignored.
- Nobody ever left a voicemail.
- There’s no need to risk a customer misunderstanding the procedure.
The only notable advantage of an automated phone answering service over a virtual phone assistant is that it can handle a higher volume of calls while spending less money. The system’s maintenance costs aren’t too high once it’s in place. This indicates that the automated service may be able to handle a large number of incoming calls. Even if you use a computerized attendant, there will still be much work. It is difficult to determine how satisfied customers are with the automated system, and you will need to follow up on calls.
Services From A Virtual Receptionist With A Personal Touch
A virtual phone assistant service may provide an automated way to have your phones answered, but it is not an automated receptionist. Virtual receptionists are typically based in a call center or remote location, either in the United States or another country, giving your clients and callers access to a natural person who can adjust to the situation.
What benefits can you expect from a live person answering the phone? Here are a few of them to consider:
First and foremost, a kind and courteous person’s personal touch can genuinely make a difference. No matter how kind and generous the automated messages are, in the end, you cannot replace the personal touch of being able to call a customer by name and inquire about their day, for example, with an automated answering system. Have you ever dialed a number only to be disappointed to hear a recording on the other end? People might find it annoying that a robot is taking their call.
Another benefit of a virtual phone assistant is that customers can typically find the information they need much more quickly. They can directly request assistance with a particular customer service issue. A reputable live receptionist service will guarantee that a qualified employee is answering the call. You can confidently create scripts so the inquiry will receive an appropriate response.
How Can Virtual Phone Assistants Simplify Your Life?
Most of these advantages focus on improving customer satisfaction and making life easier for them. The presence of a human receptionist on the other end of the phone allows them to carry out tasks that aren’t possible with an automated system, which can make life easier for you and your employees. These consist of:
- Making appointment plans
- Providing criticism
- entering data
- interacting with your CMS directly
Most businesses concur that it is much preferable to return to calls and appointments that have already been scheduled rather than having to listen to voicemails before contacting people. Statistics on how much a missed call can cost your business vary. It is challenging to estimate the monetary value of each call you miss without thoroughly analyzing your particular industry. There is no denying that you risk losing customers for life, though. In light of this, spending money on a system makes sense to ensure your company’s phone number is never forgotten.
Each of these choices has its place. An automated phone answering service is preferable to none for large businesses that lack the funding for human interaction on every call. However, customers are generally much more content if they can speak with a live person. This enhances their opinion of your company and may result in better, more thorough customer service.
As a result, if you need help with this task but are too busy managing other duties in your business, look no further. On a business day, hire a virtual call answering assistant from Vgrow Solutions to handle all incoming calls.