You work hard to market your home services business and bring in new leads. Interested consumers hear your catchy radio jingle, see the slick billboard that cost you a pretty penny, or find your service trucks on their commute. As a result, they head over to the user-friendly website you designed or call your number, ready to sign up.
But what happens when they’re ready to sign a contract and it’s after hours, or your line is busy? They call and get sent to voicemail. With 70 to 90 percent of home services sales occurring by phone, you might as well kiss those voicemail leads goodbye.
For home services providers like ABC Home & Commercial Services, it's about remaining competitive and addressing the customer in whichever method they want to be contacted. Voicemail isn't one of them. "With over 25,000 calls a month, there are some that will eventually go to voicemail. Fortunately, we've reduced it now to less than a tenth of a percent," says John Crouch, VP of Customer Relations and Inbound Sales.
The Death of Voicemail for Home Services
Dislike of voicemail started with millennials and has continued with Gen Z. These days, even older generations prefer to avoid it—it means waiting. When calling about a problem like an infestation of ants or roaches, consumers despise this outmoded channel even more.
According to smartphone retailer e2save, only one in five people leave a message when sent to voicemail. You can bet the ones that didn’t leave a message moved on to another home services provider—the one who answered their call.
Voicemail Leads Need Quick Action
If your business accepts calls, only 20 percent of callers will leave a voicemail message. To keep those leads, you need to respond as quickly as possible. Voice for Pest experts like CEO Tom Welsh says, “When a lead submits an inquiry, take advantage of that moment when you have their attention by calling them within seconds.”
Even after contacting you, potential customers keep looking. So, you only have a few minutes to act. Very few businesses can deliver that quick reaction time without a multi-channel contact center that’s available around the clock.
Voicemail Takes up Time and Money
ABC Home & Commercial believes in an uberization of services where every request should be automated. John Crouch says, "We want to give options to however a customer wants to interact with us - chat, voice, text, or whatever it might be. All the way from introduction to point of sale and purchase, needs to be available without ever interacting with someone. With our 24/7 response with Slingshot, we can take each call after-hours, overflow, or weekends so nothing goes to voicemail."
Many other corporations have realized that consumers prefer non-voice, self-serve channels, such as web portals, chat, text, or email. The time once spent listening to one-way voicemails is better spent creating the two-way conversations now possible through more widely used channels.
If your business relies on voicemail to catch after-hours or overflow customer inquiries, you don’t have to squander perfectly good leads. Catching the phone leads you get just takes some creativity, speed, and automation.
Answer Calls Around the Clock
Are you able to keep your business open all the time? With live sales reps answering your incoming phone calls 24/7, you’ll never miss another call or send a potential VIP customer to voicemail.
Return Messages Quicker
Sometimes you can’t help sending people to voicemail. In that case, just make sure you can respond right away. This is when a little back-up comes in handy. Virtual receptionists can catch any calls you miss or help you return customer messages as soon as possible.
As part of Slingshot and Voice for Pest’s partnership, users can “click-to-call” or automatically assign reps to call back voicemail leads. Karisa Gregor, Marketing Manager for VoiceforPest, suggests, “Agent and call performance are always a critical piece of a company’s ability to provide excellent service. The need to manage a call queue in today’s new work environment is critical so no leads are transferred to voicemail.”
Connect with Customers on Every Channel
You can also meet your customer base on their terms. They want instant answers, no matter the time of day. Give them what they’re looking for with automated omnichannel responses:
- Text-enable your business phone number — 9 out of 10 customers would text businesses if available
- Add a live webchat to your website
- Integrate Facebook messages into a multi-channel, central inbox like Slingshot
It will pay off with the right approach—and the right partner. Whether you’re looking for around-the-clock home services sales support or just automation for your operation, Slingshot can help you transform your home service business into a 24/7 sales operation. You’ll never fret about a dead voicemail again.