There is very little training required and start-up costs can be kept to minimum.
It is, however time consuming and you will probably need to provide 24-hr coverage to your clients to be successful.
However the profits are substantial with the real possibility of making between $75,000 and $150,000 within the first 12-18 months.
There can also be significant income growth potential as you expand your customer base.
Even though email and other internet communication forms have emerged, the telephone is still the number one source of contact for clients and professionals.
This is especially true in professions that require personal contact including: doctors (such as a physician answering service), lawyers, life coaches, therapists, real estate professionals, etc.
These professional prefer their clients speak to a human and not a machine, typically paying handsomely for the service.
Routing MethodsThere are several ways to route your clients’ calls to your office.
- Use an internet service: there are several providers out there that not only dependably route calls but for a nominal fee per month they will also provide an exclusive 800 number for each client. You can then use the provided software to route that number to any number including cell and landlines. Best of all the software identifies each number on your computer before it is forwarded to your phone. So you could literally be anywhere in the world with a wireless network card and cell phone and conduct your business.
- Install separate landslines: This is a tried and true method for starting an answering service and is still pretty economically effective. Most of the cost is in establishing the land line, a cost that you can pass on to your client with a set-up charge. Monthly costs are not more than $50.00 per month per line.
- Call forward to Phone/Switchboard System: Every phone service these days allows for call forwarding. Simply have your clients forward their calls to a local number with a specific switchboard route or phone system extension and they can be answered appropriately. This system can be costly but is essential for larger operations with multiple operators and at least 20 or more full-time clients. If you are using landlines give sincere thought to starting with a site that will be permanent since moving the lines (reinstalling) is expensive.
Starting An Answering Service & Equipping your SpaceStart small but equip yourself for growth. No matter what method you use for routing, plan for your first 10 clients from the beginning. Buy a computer that will adequately allow you to run several programs effectively. Invest in good phones, wireless cards, etc.
You need to create a professional environment for call answering. No customer wants their phone answered with a television in the background, dogs barking, children crying, etc. Be professional, you need a quiet uninterrupted work area; every caller should feel at ease in speaking with you.