Missing customer calls is inevitable for any company, but if it repeats too often, customers will choose another business to provide better service. Thus, it is crucial to understand the difference and peculiarities of lost call, abandoned call, missed call and dropped call to have an effective strategy for their prevention. According to the Hubspot research, Covid-19 pandemic placed a heavier load on contact centers, leading to customers experiencing longer response time. In 2021, it took the customers 2 minutes on average to quit the call if they were put on hold, and 81% of customers value the company’s ability to solve their inquiry quickly. Read on to discover the core reasons for the above calls, prevention tips and use cases to improve customer satisfaction.
What’s a Lost Call and How to Prevent It
What is a lost call? A lost call is any call that terminates before the interaction between customer and agent is completed. For example, it can happen because the customer hangs up the phone before reaching an agent or because the call was terminated due to a technical error.
“Lost call” is an umbrella term for any call that doesn’t go as expected, voluntarily or involuntarily. The main reasons for lost calls are poor queue and call management, affecting the business revenue and reputation significantly.
How can your company prevent lost calls?
- More agents can be engaged to take calls, easing the burden on the existing team. Training the agents can also be useful to handle both inbound and outbound calls and reduce occupancy in low traffic periods.
- The virtual queueing mechanism allows customers to secure their inquiry place of inbound customers without staying on the line. The system logs their queue positions, and when they reach the team, the contact centre agent makes an outbound call to them. This strategy improves lost call rates because the line can not time out over a lengthy hold period, and the customer does not abandon the call.
- Using the Calling Line Identify (also known as Caller ID or CLI), your company can determine the telephone numbers of those who lost their calls. Then, these numbers can be programmed into an outbound dialler to call the customer back as soon as there is a free agent to solve the issue.
How to Recognize Abandoned Calls
What is an abandoned call? An abandoned call happens when the caller hangs up the phone while in the waiting line, using the IVR or before leaving the voicemail. An outbound call can also get abandoned if the client answers but hangs up before the system reaches the agent.
The main reason for a high number of abandoned calls is a low number of landlines, causing poor agents’ performance. The other reason is long handle time which is an essential KPI for any contact center. If the conversation is not optimized and the agents can not resolve the problem quickly, the customer will hang up the call after waiting in a queue just for a few minutes next time.
Thus, is there a plan to manage your queue efficiently if it becomes overloaded?
A call routing method can help prevent abandoned calls in your company. When unexpected spikes occur, agents from other teams may need to be temporarily transferred into the main support group, using a skills-based routing rule to manage the questions. Call center service software is used to operate with and transfer tickets accordingly. Contact support teams can also use various programs to measure important service-level metrics like time-to-answer, transfer rate, hold-time, and idle time, indicating a potential queue overload. Whether it is a new product being launched or a seasonal spike, the company should be able to predict it and modify agents’ schedules as needed.
Based on an abandoned call definition, another great strategy for keeping the customers loyal to your business is implementing a knowledge base. A knowledge portal on a company website is a great resource for both in-house and outsource customer service to find answers and information about a product, service, or topic quickly. It can work as a self-serve digital library for the most frequently asked questions. Knowledge base resources should be reachable, comprehensive and interesting so people can navigate easily. Apart from reducing the call abandonment rate, such a portal can answer easy questions leaving more time for agents to solve more complex ones. Before building a knowledge base, the company can do a small research to identify the areas where your customers need assistance and the most searchable topics.
Efficient Contact Center = No Missed Calls
A missed call is identified as the one that rings for a certain amount of time, but agents either don’t answer it soon enough or reject it. For example, contact centers usually miss incoming calls when the ringing time reaches the maximum threshold determined in the inbound call settings. Missed call meaning also signals it during a call transfer where the specified agent doesn’t answer the phone on time, and the first agent is already on another call.
One of the strategies for preventing missed calls is organizing hunt groups. Hunt groups are a collection of telephone extensions organized to call simultaneously. For example, everyone in the tech department gets a call as you group people into specific teams. Your company can have as many hunt groups as necessary, and they can be customized according to the structure of your business. Hunt groups can also be set up to interconnect with each other. It means that even if your entire tech team is busy, you will not miss the call because a different hunt group can pick it up.
Additionally, redirecting voicemails to email is a great tip to avoid missed calls. This service delivers voicemail messages from missed calls directly to a designated email inbox. Each voicemail is sent as a separate email attachment, providing all the information about the customer’s background. It is a great solution for team members who may often be away from their desk phones working with prospective clients. Thus, they may be away from their phones but immediately receive voicemail updates.
What Is a Dropped Call and Why You Should Avoid It
What is a dropped call?
A dropped call is a lost call that is accidentally disconnected due to a technical error or miscalculation. The reasons are technical bugs, staffing issues and inefficiency of the contact center environment.
A Predictive Dialer technique is the main way to reduce the call drop rate and boost the agents’ productivity for businesses. A Predictive Dialer is an automated outbound calling system to minimize the waiting time between active calls. It uses specific mathematical algorithms to track the leads’ data, the average talk time, the number of available agents and missed calls to indicate the behavior pattern records. When a lead picks up the phone, it transfers the call to an active agent. Thus, this method predicts when the agent will most likely be available to answer a call. The more free agents, the fewer dropped calls in the company.
A Predictive Dialer also tries to control the customer satisfaction rate, one of the main features of the dropped call meaning. Thus, the number of active calls doesn’t exceed the available agents by initiating calls according to the current dialing ratio.
How Businesses Work With Lost, Abandoned, Missed and Dropped Calls: Use Cases
Robotex Ltd. specializes in supplying metalworking equipment and integrating robotic systems into leading world companies, working with public and private clients. With the increased flow of incoming calls, their call handlers had trouble integrating specific scenarios and connecting clients with the right specialist on time. Thus, the lost calls prevailed in the company, decreasing customer satisfaction.
By integrating efficient call routing scenarios, calls from clients who had already contacted the company go to the exact manager who spoke to them. It gives every single client an individualized approach to their needs. Because of this, the number of missed calls for Robotex Ltd. dropped to zero. Also, using smart SIM cards, corporate mobile communications can be efficient and organized from anywhere in the world.
Reliance Home Comfort is the Canadian primary source for furnaces, air conditioners, water heaters, furnace repairs, smart home systems and more. They have a contact center dedicated team ready to provide high-quality and professional service, sharing some tips on how they avoid abandoned calls. Firstly, they have visibility into unanswered calls by detecting voice energy to uncover whether or not the calls were answered by an agent, if the call was sent to voicemail, or if a voicemail was left. Once they know why calls aren’t being answered, the company addresses the issues and reduces the volume of unanswered calls. Also, cloud-based contact center solutions activate the unanswered call data in real time. This allows immediate re-engagement with the highest value unanswered sales calls to increase the conversion rate when the caller is most interested.
Pennard Vets, the veterinary clinic in Kent, were dealing with an unsustainable amount of inbound phone calls, preventing their front desk team from responding to all pet owner enquiries as they came in. Thus, they set up PetsApp to improve how they speak to customers and effectively deal with inbound client calls. Within minutes of signing up with it, they were able to begin onboarding their pet owners. They had dedicated training sessions for PetsApp Customer Success Managers to advertise the platform to pet owners. Thus, customers can order drugs and food refills, book an appointment and register their pets in the clinic. After introducing PetsApp, their missed call rate dropped from an average of 1,400 across all sites per month to an average of 250. Text chat through PetsApp has saved the Pennard team over 1,100 hours of inbound call time over 12 months, creating more time to focus on other priority tasks.
Riverside Special Utility District provides safe, high-quality water services to the Riverside community in Texas while maintaining a high standard of excellence in customer service. To avoid dropped calls, all incoming and outgoing calls are recorded in their system, allowing the utility district to refer back to their phone system and ensure their agent follows proper procedures. Recordings can also streamline the employee training process, saving resources during onboarding. The Riverside Special Utility District saved approximately $4,000 on the cost of a new phone system just by switching to their new platform, optimizing the energy costs and decreasing the dropped call rates.
The Bottom Line
Now, the core peculiarities and differences between Lost call, Abandoned Call, Missed Call, Dropped Call seem pretty clear. The main reasons for lost calls are poor queue and call management, affecting the business revenue and reputation significantly. Thus, companies implement virtual queueing and callbacks, use several channels for communication, create emergency plans for call spikes and expand the team to serve customers’ needs. A proper assessment of your company’s contact center work statistics should help determine the exact steps you need to take to avoid problems with call communication.
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