The abolition of premium rate numbers will lead to more customers directly contacting business, which is something to be welcomed, says Dave Ogden, Account Executive at Aspect Software.
While some businesses may feel that the “floodgates” for complaints are opened now that calling is much easier, this is not the right attitude to take according to Aspect.
Interacting with customers should never be looked at as a negative, says Ogden, whether this is over the phone or through social media. “A potential increase in calls should be seen as an opportunity to gather more customer information and create more loyal customers,” he says.
“With no premium rates, there is the possibility that companies will receive more calls, and it’s understandable why they might be worried,” adds Ogden. “It’s always difficult to appease a customer if something goes wrong – typically, you’ll have to offer them something in the way of compensation such as a discount to a monthly subscription, or a refund.”
Ogden goes on to explain how not being prepared for these new scenarios can mean losing business to your competitors.
An increase in calls may show up some of your customer service shortcomings though and now is the time to address those.
“It’s important customer service strategies are aligned to the modern customer as, in today’s world, customers expect 24/7 support and contact through different channels and devices – including smartphones, tablets and social media – as well as fast and immediate feedback,” continues Ogden.
“If a company has a multi-channel contact centre environment, then abolishing premium rate numbers shouldn’t cause any issues as customers have already been using other preferred contact channels to solve their problems.”
“Change is always difficult,” ends Ogden but there is great opportunity for all businesses to expand their customer services, strengthen relationships and with that increase business and revenue.