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If you run a home service business, most of your sales probably come from inbound leads. But not every call turns into a lead. Why? Most customer service representatives (CSRs) aren’t trained to be good at sales-they’re trained to be assist customers. However, CSRs are arguably your most important sales representatives-they’re usually the first, and often the last impression your potential customers have of your company.
Ensuring that your call handling team has the skills necessary to turn leads into sales should be one of your top priorities as a business owner. Are your CSRs making mistakes that could be hurting your profit? Below are rules every CSR should follow to make the most sales possible.
Tips For Making Inbound Sales
Answer the Call with a Smile
Your CSR’s tone in her opening line is crucial. It is your potential customer’s first impression of your company, and it should convey that you are happy to help them and confident in your abilities. CSRs should begin every inbound conversation by introducing the company, themselves, and inquiring how she can be of service.
The bottom line: A rude or unprofessional demeanor can cost your company sales. Your CSRs should use a polite, friendly tone that suggests they are eager to assist your customers.
Don’t Leave the Customer Waiting
If your hold times are excessive or customers can only reach your voicemail, you’re likely missing out on revenue you could have had. Calls are often dropped after being on hold longer than a minute or two, and customers who get your voicemail will quickly move on to a competitor.
The bottom line: Make sure you have enough CSRs to handle all of your incoming calls.
Provide Accurate Information
You would be surprised at how often leads are not closed simply because CSRs tell callers that their company does not offer certain services or service certain areas, when they actually do!
The bottom line: Ensure that your CSRs are all up to date and fully knowledgeable about all of your products, services, and service area.
Don’t Let the Customer Dictate the Call
While your CSRs should always patiently and diligently listen to callers, they should also take charge of the conversation and assure them that your company can resolve any issues or accommodate any request. Confidence implies competence.
The bottom line: Your CSRs need to be in control of the call at all times, or they cannot effectively close them.
Book Appointments on the First Call
Not booking an appointment on the first call significantly lowers your chance of making a sale. You can increase your chance of booking an appointment on the first call by creating a sense of urgency. One very effective way to do this is by offering an incentive to book now as opposed to later, like offering a free estimate or waiving the trip fee.
The bottom line: Your best chance for converting more calls into actual customers (especially price shoppers) is by booking an appointment on the first call. Offer incentives!
Make More Sales by Training for Your Call Handling Team
Great customer service is not something that can be taught in a day or delivered in a one-size-fits-all formula. Every call your team handles is unique, so many different skills are required to provide top-notch customer service that turns inbound calls into sales and loyal fans of your small business.
That’s why we offer Smart Selling: a CSR training program that teaches CSRs how to provide world-class service that creates raving customers and develop the confidence and skills necessary to convert more leads from your businesses’ existing pool. When you’re finished with the program, your CSRs will be able to handle even the most difficult calls, stretching your marketing dollars further than you ever knew they could go.
If you’re interested in trying our Smart Selling program, contact us today!
About The Author: Jenny is an SEO Analyst at Blue Corona. When she's not helping her clients grow their businesses through the web, she enjoys furnishing her new home and exploring new restaurants with her husband.
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