How Can I Get Straight Answers From Customer Service?

  • October 12, 2022
  • 3 min read

In today’s world, obtaining quality customer service seems to be a Herculean task, particularly when seeking information before making a purchase. The era of easily accessible, expert advice appears to be dwindling, leaving customers frustrated and businesses struggling to find cost-effective solutions. Let’s dive into why this challenge exists and explore alternative avenues to get the answers you seek.

The Cost of Quality Customer Service

Customer service has become an expensive venture for businesses, especially when it involves highly skilled individuals answering pre-sale inquiries. The dilemma arises in deciding whether to allocate qualified personnel to address customer queries, incurring substantial costs of around $30 to $40 per hour, or to divert calls to the sales staff, potentially compromising the quality of information provided.

The Quandary of Sales Staff Handling Inquiries

When customer calls are directed to sales staff, the motivation shifts towards making a sale rather than imparting unbiased information. Commission-based incentives may lead to a lack of transparency, as the focus becomes closing deals rather than addressing the specific needs of the customer. This approach often results in customers feeling pressured or misguided.

Low-Level Clerks, Automation, and the Void of Information

Other common experiences include calls routed to low-level clerks or receptionists, leading to promises of call-backs that may never materialize. Automation, in the form of voicemail and interactive voice response systems, can be equally frustrating, offering a less-than-ideal customer experience.

Alternative Approaches: Seeking Information Outside the Box

  1. Directing Calls to Sales Departments: If voicemails and receptionists are standing in your way, consider reaching out directly to the sales department. Salespeople not overwhelmed with non-buying inquiries may be more willing to provide valuable information.
  2. Exploring Trade Organizations: Look for trade organizations relevant to the industry in question. These groups often have knowledgeable advisors or consultants who can offer insights without the pressure of making a sale.
  3. Government Agencies: For regulated industries, government agencies overseeing permits and licenses might hold valuable information. While navigating bureaucracy can be challenging, these agencies often have experts on hand.
  4. In-Person Visits: When all else fails, consider going old-school and visit businesses in person. This approach eliminates phone tree frustrations and forces a direct interaction where they can’t put you on hold or ignore your queries.
  5. Paid Consultations: Recognizing the value of expert advice, some platforms offer paid consultations with professionals in various industries. While this may not suit everyone, it provides a dedicated, one-on-one opportunity to get the answers you need.

Empowering Customers to Find Answers

In a world where customer service often falls short, it’s essential to explore alternative avenues to obtain the information you seek. By considering unconventional approaches, from contacting trade organizations to opting for paid consultations, customers can empower themselves to navigate the complexities of pre-sale inquiries effectively. Remember, the pursuit of knowledge should not be hindered by frustrating phone experiences, and there are innovative ways to break free from the customer service conundrum.

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