In the olden days, businesses were open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. If customers wanted help, they contacted the business during that time frame. With the expansion of global commerce through the Internet, companies are no longer targeting customers in their immediate areas or even in their own time zones. The ability of people to discover the information they need through the Internet has made commerce a 24-hour venture. People can go online and order goods and services any time of day or night. Those who are looking for help in gathering information and making product choices have come to expect help desk services and live support at their convenience, regardless of the time of day or day of the week. Companies that don’t provide this service are losing out to those that do. There are different types of customer support available outside the 9-to-5 workday. While some of it is automated, much of it requires a live person on the other end to handle specific needs and answer personalized questions. Here’s a look at some of the options that businesses are providing to their customers today.
Phone Order Taking
Customer who ware uncomfortable with placing their orders online or who need extra help to find exactly what they need are turning to merchants with phone order taking capabilities outside of the 9-to-5 workday. Whether it’s a company in California staffing a call center at 5 a.m. to accommodate customers on the East Coast placing a personal order before they dash off to the office or a Pacific Coast business ordering supplies from a company on Central Standard Time at the end of the workday, clients expect someone to pick up the phone and respond to their needs.
Live Receptionist and Answering Service
Simple calls to businesses with a small staff or telecommuters now require a live receptionists to field calls at all hours of the day in order to keep up with client demand. This offers customers from London to Beijing to New York City the ability to reach a live person and learn the answers to basic questions about a business. For companies that still operate on a 9-to-5 schedule, customers calling at the wrong time may go elsewhere to have their needs met.
Help Desk Services
For customers who need immediate assistance after-hours, automated and outsourced help desk services make placing orders or learning about a company’s services easier. Live chat support can fill the gaps for online clients who need assistance.