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"We have worked with a few answering services since we started our business in 1998 and A Better Answer is BY FAR, the best experience we've ever had with an answering service. We look forward to working with ALL OF YOU now and into the future."Michael J. Mayfield - Signature Healthcare


3 Common Myths About Answering Services, Busted

small business answering services

There are many misconceptions about what answering services are and do, and unfortunately, that can discourage some small or mid-sized companies from getting the small business answering services that could help them grow or maintain their businesses. Below are some of the most common myths about answering services that persist in the business world, as well as some information that counters them and might help you decide if you could benefit from a live answering service:

  1. Myth: Answering Services Are Just for Doctors

    Truth: Itís true that 24 hour answering services are most commonly employed by doctors, lawyers or other professionals who get emergency calls outside of business hours. But answering services are simply for any business that doesnít have a dedicated call management or customer service team as part of the staff. Most answering services will let you choose your hours so that youíre not paying for times you donít really need covered (not many people call a hardware store at 1 a.m., for example).

  2. Myth: Hiring an Answering Service Is Expensive

    Truth: Many owners or managers assume that even a small business answering service is too expensive to justify contracting out these services. But in reality, doing so can boost productivity and save your company money. If youíre having employees take on multiple roles, answering phones as well as fulfilling their normal responsibilities, their workflow can be interrupted by simple questions regarding hours, policies and similar issues. An answering service can take care of these simple matters directly so that your employees can focus on their expertise. And if youíre considering hiring an in-house team to handle calls, youíll pay far more in labor and training costs than you would for an outsourced contract. If you're trying to save money by implementing an automated phone system, you should also consider the costs of opportunities lost; consumers are far more likely to get frustrated and hang up if they're asked to jump through hoops just to speak to a live person.

  3. Myth: Phone Service Is Obsolete Anyway

    Truth: You might be wondering if phone service really matters anyway. Wonít employees just leave you messages or email you? The answer, overwhelmingly, is no. It might surprise you to learn that even in this digital age, most people prefer customer service issues to be handled over the phone. Moreover, consumers have high standards; one recent study showed that about 60% of participants thought a minute of hold time was too long, and just under 33% thought any hold time whatsoever was unacceptable. With those standards, itís more effective to hire a professional answering service than to keep those customers happy on your own.

What questions do you have about small business answering services? Ask in the comments.

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