It can be a struggle for small businesses to run as efficiently as larger businesses do. Smaller businesses don’t have access to the same resources as big businesses. So small companies can find that some aspects of their business begin to slip. They don’t have the time and money to stay on top of everything. It can also be extremely difficult to expand when you’re unable to access the same resources as big businesses. Business expansion takes time and can be expensive, so it’s easy for small businesses to get stuck in a rut. Your business might reach a certain point, and then you feel that there’s nowhere for you to go.
One of the obstacles that small businesses often face is access to communication solutions. For example, a small business might not be able to afford to take on full-time staff to make outbound marketing calls. They may even struggle to handle incoming calls to their office. But there are many communication solutions that small businesses can access. There are even some which are designed to tackle the problems that small businesses face. The following technology could help your business if you’re struggling to keep afloat or expand. They’re all much more accessible than big business communications solutions.
Make Internet Calls with a Phone
When you first launch your business, it’s likely you’ll be launching from home or perhaps from a desk in a shared office space. One of the problems you might come up against is having a dedicated phone line for customers and clients to call. If you’re working from home, you don’t want your personal calls mixed up with business calls. Using a cell phone is one option, but customers aren’t likely to want to call a cell phone for customer service. One of the solutions you can use is to buy a piece of kit that plugs into your broadband modem, which you then plug into your phone.
One example of a company that provides this service is Vonage. This service allows you to set up different phone lines and use a virtual number. Virtual numbers can be very useful to provide local phone numbers to customers. People find local numbers more trustworthy and cheaper. If you’re not in your office to answer your phone, services like Vonage can forward the calls to your cell. You can also try Ooma. This service uses your internet connection to create phone services. It provides services such as extension dialing, conferencing, and on-hold music. You can pay a monthly fee for unlimited calls within the US and Canada. More communication for you busyness Start a blog with WordPress
Virtual Receptionists and Call Answering
Some companies struggle to find the time to manage their phones. You could have a dedicated business phone line set up but discover that you’re always out of the office when it rings. Or perhaps you’re spending so much time talking on the phone that you can’t get anything else done. Hiring someone to manage your phone calls all day can be expensive, and it isn’t often something that a small business can afford to do. Luckily, there are other options for making sure your phone doesn’t spend all day ringing out.
You can use a virtual solution to give customers the impression that you have an on-site call answering service. These services not only help to keep you organized, but they also help to grow your business’s reputation. You look like a more established business if you have someone managing your phones. With a call answering service like the ones you’ll find in London virtual offices, you can take your mind off answering phones and concentrate on other things. Call answering services can take messages and forward calls to you, all while following a call script. Be careful in your selection of a service. You don’t want to end up with a service who can’t keep your calls straight from other businesses’.
Web conferencing is one of the most accessible forms of communication for small businesses. Larger businesses might use sophisticated setups with large screens and projectors, but you don’t need to have the most expensive equipment. Web conferencing makes talking to clients and business partners face-to-face much easier. This is especially true when it isn’t possible for you to meet in person. A video camera, a microphone, and video conferencing software are all you need to have a meeting over the internet.
Tools for sharing documents and for collaborating on them make it easy to collaborate while in a video meeting. Other useful tools include screen sharing software and instant messaging. Virtual meetings are also often shorter. As long as you have a secure internet connection, there are fewer distractions, so it’s easier to stick to the agenda.
Some small businesses prefer to deal with customers over email before the telephone. If you handle your customer service via the company email address, you might find that they start to get on top of you. You don’t want to spend all day answering emails when you have a long list of other things to do. Just as with phone calls, you can have a virtual assistant manage your customer emails for you. You don’t have to worry about the service answering your emails incorrectly. You instruct the virtual service on how to respond to different scenarios and when they should forward an email to you.
If you would rather manage your own customer service emails, with a little help, there are lots of tools available. You can use customer relationship management tools like Desk.com and Zendesk. These help you manage your relationship with customers. They help you collect data about your customer communications and stay on top of your incoming and outgoing emails.
Small businesses might have less money than big businesses. But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t plenty of business solutions available to them. From email to telephone and the internet, there are lots of tools to use. Small businesses can grow and continue to offer excellent service with the right communications technology.