Businesses rely on good customer service more than ever. Business owners and managers know that the customer experience can determine the fate of the business.
Abut 85% of customers are going to increase their spending after a good experience. At the same time, 70% will limit spending if they feel they weren’t treated right.
Companies have turned to call centers to improve the customer experience. The level of outsourcing has grown and the call center industry is now over $13 billion.
There hasn’t been a better time to start a call center business. Keep reading to discover how you can build a call center business that is profitable and highly successful.
- Choose Your Niche
Your first assignment in building a call center business is to choose a niche. You’ll see that there are many different types of call centers.
There are outbound call centers, which most people think of as telemarketing. There are inbound call centers that take care of customer service calls.
You can then decide what industry you want to serve. Outbound call centers can serve almost any industry, from political campaigns to nonprofit organizations.
Inbound call centers can serve ecommerce companies, IT providers, and healthcare providers. There are some call centers that target doctors and provide an answering service.
You have to get clear about the type of call center business you plan to have before you start it.
- Write Your Business Plan
There is some debate as to whether or not a business plan is necessary before you start a business. Startups that have a formal business plan are more likely to be successful than ones that don’t.
Your business plan asks you to think about every aspect of your business. It’s an opportunity to see the risks of running a call center business.
For example, if you decide to have an outbound call center business, how will you overcome the challenges of regulations and people not answering their phones?
In an inbound call center that has a focus on customer service, will you have multiple ways for customers to get support, such as messaging and text? Customers don’t want to be put on hold and would prefer to exchange text messages with a call center agent.
A business plan also questions the size of the business and the plan for growth. You have to figure out how you’re going to be profitable and how long it will take.
Will you start off with just a few call center agents and handle fewer customers to start? Will you have a large call center that serves dozens of customers?
These decisions will impact your bottom line. In your business plan, you have to consider your competition, too. You then figure out how to position your call center business in a way that’s appealing to potential customers.
- Get Serious About the Business
The business plan is a serious step to take in starting a call center business. You then have to make your business official.
Give your call center business a name and start to create the brand. You’ll need to purchase the website domain name so people can find your business online.
Registering your business with your state’s secretary of state’s office will make your business official. You may have to apply for additional licenses to operate as a call center. You’ll want to check with the laws in your state.
- Get to Know Call Center Regulations
As a call center, you’re going to have to comply with various industry and telecommunications regulations. Which ones you need to abide by will depend on your call center business niche.
A call center that serves as an answering service for doctors has to abide by HIPPA regulations. All agents are forbidden from revealing patient information and your call center is subjected to data privacy laws.
As an outbound call center, you have to work within the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). It gives consumers the opportunity to opt-out of calls. Outbound call centers have to call within certain hours.
- Pick a Call Center Location
Starting a business means that there are dozens of decisions you need to make before you accept your first customers.
A big decision for a call center operation is the location of the business. The perfect space will be within your budget, have plenty of parking, space for employees to work, and a break room. The location also has to be accessible for all employees.
Thanks to technology, you can have your call center employees work from home. While that will lower your office overhead, it will increase the need for secure systems. One hacking incident could do irreparable damage to your business.
- Invest in Equipment and Systems
Once you have your space, you can invest in systems and equipment to operate the business. You’ll need computer terminals, a telecommunications system, phones, and headsets for each employee.
You’ll want to have a system that can tell you how active and productive your employees are. Call center reporting software is a must for your call center business.
- Market Your Call Center Business
All you need now are customers. How you market your business will depend on your niche. You have to go where your customers are. That could be trade shows, conferences, online, or through networking.
Starting a Call Center Business
While there are many different paths to starting a new business, starting a call center business is a smart choice. There is a sure path to growth as business owners struggle with running a business and providing outstanding customer service.
To start a call center business, you have to decide your niche and write your business plan. You have to have a great location and make sure your systems are secure. Most of all, you have to have a plan to scale up your business.
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