IVR vs. Abby Connect

February 01, 2017

Until recently, the only way to have your office phone answered was to have someone physically pick it up and answer it. Now, customers have a plethora of options on how to have their business phones answered. While searching for a live answering service, you might hear about or look into using an interactive voice response (IVR). But what is an IVR exactly?

What is an Interactive Voice Response (IVR)?

IVR uses a telephone menu system that seeks to identify a customer's needs and then routes callers to the appropriate agent for that company. It can be as simple as someone telling you to “press 1 for sales.” While some IVR providers say the technology will increase efficiency within your business, collect information about callers, and prioritize calls based on value, a phone answering service or virtual receptionist use live receptionists to perform similar tasks. The main problem with IVR systems is the amount of effort and attention it requires on the customer's end to make it work well.

Clients Want Fast and They Want Easy

Callers usually reach out due to a certain issue they have or a matter they would like help with. 73% of consumers say friendly customer service reps can make them fall in love with a brand. 

By time time they call in, most callers are already frustrated. 

When customers can't reach anyone for help, or if they have to go through endless amounts of options to reach a live person they are frustrated and upset. Many times, what they are calling in about is not on the automated menu, and they are transferred to an operator who will then transfer them to someone who can try to help. Sometimes those transfer calls are successful, but other times the calls can be sent to the wrong place and cause more frustration for the caller.

Frankly, callers do not want to speak to a robot. They do not want to repeat the matter of their call to three or more people, and they do not want to be sent to the wrong department. It simply takes too much time and effort on their end.

If your mission is to create an incredible customer service experience, IVR is definitely not the way to go! 

While it gives you 24/7 answering options, it's an automated answering option. Most callers will either get frustrated, hang-up or give-up before they reach someone. 72% of callers will hang up (sometimes calling another company) if they do not reach a live person. The underlying problem with most IVR systems is that regardless of how customizable they are to suit a vast amount of customer questions and needs, most customers really just want to speak to a live person.

The Difference: 

The difference between your typical IVR system and Abby Connect is huge.

IVR systems simply cannot provide a warm, friendly, bubbly, empathetic tone that a live receptionist can. Why have an automated 24/7 answering service when you can have a live answering receptionist available 24/7? With an IVR system, you're at a high risk to receive inaccurate information or to have callers routed to the incorrect place. Despite being affordable and easy to use, IVR lacks human interaction with an excess of inefficiencies which can negatively impact customer service and create frustration and confusion for your callers.  

With Abby Connect, you have a team of solution-seeking receptionists committed to creating an incredible customer service experience. Your team is dedicated to confirming information, screening calls and seamlessly transferring callers over to the appropriate person. With our live receptionist service, you only pay for the time our receptionists spend on the phone with your clients, you can customize your experience (i.e. greetings, where to direct customers for certain calls), and provide your customers with a fantastic first impression of your business.

Don’t just take our word for it for why you shouldn’t use IVR. Try Abby Connect for free for 14 days and see the difference for yourself.

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