Many businesses hire virtual call centers because of the convenience it affords them. After all, no business owner wants to sit by the phone for hours attending to customer calls. Virtual call centers address this problem by offering businesses a way to deal with common customer queries while saving time. For example, this virtual-call-center/ acts as a first point of contact with customers on behalf of their clients.
For those that enjoy interacting with people over the phone, starting a virtual call center might be a good idea. In addition to helping businesses communicate better with their customers, you can make some too in the process. Industry estimates indicate that an average call center owner can make upwards of $30 000 annually. While this may not seem much, it is good money considering that you’ll have agents working for you.
To start your virtual call center, follow these steps.
1)Choose a Specialty
Most people assume that a call center can cater to just about every business. While some call centers market their services using a “jack-of-all-trades” slogan, choosing a specialty is better for business. For instance, an inbound virtual call center for beauty services requires a different skill set than an outbound call center for an insurance company. Similarly, if a virtual call center exclusively deals with clients in the banking industry, they may have trouble offering satisfactory services to a medical clinic. That’s why it’s important to choose your niche before setting up your virtual call center. Choosing a specialty that’s in line with your experience and background will make the work enjoyable and fulfilling.
2) Budget for the Essential Equipment
Even when you’re setting up your virtual call center inside your residence, you’ll need the right equipment. Depending on your client’s needs, you may have to get specific pieces of equipment. For instance, while some clients are okay with using internet-based phone services like Skype, others are more comfortable with phone lines. This means you’ll have to invest in acquiring such equipment. Regardless of what your client prefers, having a good computer with the latest operating systems and malware is a good start. A reliable internet connection is also essential. Broadband internet is better than Wi-fi because of reliability issues.
If you’re planning to set up in a rented space, you’ll need to budget for the lease and the necessary furniture, among other things.
3) Call Center Software
You (and your call center agents) will need to keep track of calls and record voice messages, among other things. That’s where call center software comes in. Such software makes it easier to manage the daily activities of the virtual call center, ensuring that nothing is missed. You can sign up for a package of one such call center software. Many come with a free trial period, meaning you can shop around for the best deal.
4) Finding Clients
One of the major selling points of a virtual call center is that you are not bound by geography. You can have clients from every part of the globe as long as they have internet and phone access. You can use the old-fashioned way of telling friends and family about your venture. They can spread the word among their circles of friends and possibly land you some clients. However, the internet is a very effective advertising tool if used correctly. If you have the budget, you can hire a digital marketing agency to create a very attractive and engaging website that’s well optimized to bring in leads. If you can’t afford this, posting engaging content on your social media page can still do the trick, albeit slowly.
If your target clientele is law firms and private medical facilities, offering additional virtual assistant services can help entice such professionals into hiring your services.
5) Expand Your Business
If you’ve followed the preceding steps, then you should have your virtual call center business already set up. Growing your business becomes the next battle.
Networking is a big part of expanding your business. It can get you, clients, in unexpected ways. For instance, if you network with another virtual call center owner who doesn’t offer 24/7 services like you, they can refer some of their clients that require such services. Some clients may want a virtual call center whose working hours are compatible with multiple time zones. If you don’t offer such services, you can refer such clients to other call center owners that do. They’ll appreciate this gesture and look forward to returning the favor in the future. This will open more doors for your virtual call center.
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