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Inbound phone calls increase on Cyber Monday — is your business prepared to answer?

‘Tis the season! Black Friday, the door buster tradition where brick and mortar businesses vie for the best deals to draw the most shoppers, has been up against fierce competition the last few years from its younger sibling – Cyber Monday. With digital on the rise, Cyber Monday is one of the busiest shopping days of the year. Yet with online transactions increasing, it’s important not to neglect one of the key drivers of business – the phone! Phone calls play a significant role to help drive sales opportunities and increase revenue.

 Phone calls and abandon rates on the rise

New data from the Marchex Institute reveals that inbound call volumes increased 16 percent on average on Cyber Monday in 2016. However, abandoned calls also increased by an average of 11 percent, suggesting that companies did not adequately staff call centers. As a result, companies are missing out on significant sales opportunities on one of the biggest shopping days of the year.

Travel industry experiences largest spike

What’s more interesting is that consumers aren’t just shopping for toys or electronics on Cyber Monday – they’re also planning holiday travel and time off in the New Year. Cruise lines and hotels experienced significant spikes in call volumes on Cyber Monday, with increases of 30 percent and 27 percent respectively. Still, despite the potential revenue opportunities, cruise lines and hotels seem unprepared to manage the increase in calls. Abandon rates were 30 percent higher for both cruise lines and hotels, compared to a typical Monday in November.

 Plan ahead—prepare your call center for success

So, now that you’re in on the holiday secret (shhhh….) how can you beat out your competitors this Cyber Monday?

Increase call center staffing

Businesses that experience an increase in calls typically experience higher abandon rates, meaning customers are dropping off before they even have a chance to reach a live voice. Properly staffing your call center will ensure that calls are handled in a timely manner, and ultimately results in more sales opportunities.

Provide teams details on cyber deals

Have key messages or a Q&A on cyber deals readily available to help agents streamline the transaction. In some industries, call durations tend to go longer on Cyber Monday, meaning agents will not be able to help as many callers as they do on a typical day. Providing information up front will help reduce searching for deals they might have seen online.

Invest in call analytics

Want to maximize calls to your business? Invest in call tracking or speech analytics to help increase efficiency of your call center. From tracking inbound calls, to being able to identify the key messages and terms people are using – call analytics is a great way to increase efficiency, reduce cost and drive more phone calls.

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