Waiting on the line to speak to a customer service representative can be a frustrating experience for callers, but by making small changes to the process, you can drastically change your customers’ perception of your brand.

According to Which?, being told your call is valued is the most annoying feature when waiting for your call to be answered. 47% of respondents agreed that hearing phrases like “your call is very important to us” makes the process of calling companies much more frustrating. 28% of respondents said that being directed to the company website was the second most annoying feature, followed by being told that all agents are busy (11%).

If the calling process is not made as simple and pleasant as possible, customer service agents are beginning their interactions on the back foot. Callers are already annoyed by the time they connect to an agent, meaning they have to work harder to ensure the customer is satisfied with the experience.

Customer Preferences

Luckily, there are ways to improve the experience for your customers. Letting callers know how long they have to wait was cited as the most useful feature to hear, with 33% of respondents agreeing. This was followed by telling callers their position in the queue (32%), and being offered the option of a call back (30%). Around half of all respondents (48%) also said that classical music was the most soothing music to hear while waiting, with an engaged tone (29%) and rock music (22%) being the most annoying sounds to hear.

Waiting Times

93% of everyone surveyed stated that the maximum time that they are prepared to wait on hold was 5 minutes. The editor of Which? magazine, Richard Headland, said:

“Waiting on hold is a waste of time, but some organisations make the experience needlessly annoying through objectionable messages and music. If these drive you round the bend, vote with your feet and take your custom elsewhere. The best companies know the value of answering your call quickly.”

Jo Causon, the chief executive of the Institute of Customer Service said:

“If businesses want to enjoy ongoing customer loyalty, and attract new business, their focus should be on convenience and efficiency. In short, this means getting it right quickly, and getting it right first time. Anything less, and customers will think twice about spending money or recommending them to others.”

It’s not easy getting it right, but Ant Marketing has over 28 years worth of customer service experience under our belt. If you would like to know about our inbound services, take a look at our inbound page, or get in touch with us here.

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