Customers rarely look up businesses in the Yellow Pages anymore—they go online instead. So you might think calling a business on the phone has become obsolete, too, and that customers prefer to go to your website. In fact, according to the 2015 Call Intelligence Index, websites are actually spurring consumers to make phone calls to businesses they’re interested in.
Three-fourths of people in the study say calling a business on the phone is the quickest way to get information. And in more than half (54 percent) of cases, a call comes about because the consumer does a search on a mobile device. (By comparison, just 2 percent of calls happen as a result of looking in the Yellow Pages.)
Is your business website doing all it could be to get customers to call you? Make the following simple changes to ensure the answer is “Yes.”
- Make your business website mobile-friendly. If people are doing searches on mobile devices, your site had better be mobile-friendly or they’ll go to your competitor’s in frustration. Some 75 percent of all calls to companies are now made on cell phones.
- Sounds obvious, but put your business phone number on the top of every page of your website. Some companies don’t even have their phone number on their sites at all!
- Better yet, use a “click to call” button that’s easy to tap on a smartphone screen so customers can call you right from your site.
Once your business website is ready to drive calls, make sure your team is ready to receive them. The study found that consumers spend an average of 15 seconds on a business website, but an average of 4 minutes on the phone with a business. Make sure those 4 minutes aren’t all spent on hold by training your staff to answer the phone promptly and professionally, be prepared to answer customer questions (or find someone who can) and create a positive, friendly interaction with every customer who calls, instead of sounding frazzled and annoyed.
Think of your business phone as a sales tool instead of an obsolete technology, and your sales will grow.
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Karen Axelton is Chief Content Officer of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Visit her company’s blog at SmallBizDaily.com.