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Terry Hegarty
 
December 20, 2013 | General , Telesales | Terry Hegarty

Peak Season | Rely on scalable Telesales for increased DTC revenue and superior customer service

Between online wine sales, inventory management, accounting and fulfillment, there are plenty of things you need to finalize before the end of the year. With so many things to do, your employees may not have time to constantly sell, and customer service levels can even slip during the holiday rush.

Peak times of year are when wineries should consider outsourcing telesales and wine customer service to experienced call centers so shoppers are still getting a great experience while winery staff members focus on serving in-person clients.

The direct-to-consumer market is becoming more attractive for wineries that want to maximize revenue. However, the decision to outsource shouldn't be taken lightly.

The changing nature of telesales

Telesales can be a major time-saver for wineries that are looking to increase DTC revenue. Customer expectations have dramatically changed in recent years because people have more access to information than ever before. Individuals are more likely to research different product options on their own before making a purchase.

These changes mean telesales employees have needed to make adjustments, BRW said. It's no longer enough to read off a script. The industry has adapted to place greater emphasis on customer service, which has allowed telesales representatives to move away from heavy pitches and instead help clients solve problems.

Wineries need a telesales team with an expertise in the industry. Representatives that can establish themselves as knowledgeable in the field, can build credibility and a positive reputation for your winery while simultaneously increasing revenue.

Avoid the customer service drop-off during busy times

When you're in a rush to fulfill last-minute holiday orders, it's easy for customer service levels to slip. It's hard to handle all online and phone client inquiries when employees are hurrying to complete all tasks before the holidays, but customers won't understand this. They will quickly get frustrated if they have to hold for too long or speak to a clueless rep.

Poor customer service is lurking in every industry, but you shouldn't let it bring your winery down - especially during one of the most profitable times of year. Customer tensions may be especially high from the stress of leaving shopping until the last minute, so a dedicated call center can help field the overflow of calls your employees can't manage.

One of the advantages to outsourcing customer service is operations will be scalable during peak times of year, according to Inc. magazine. It can be difficult for wineries to bring in additional service representatives on a temporary basis, but a call center gives them more options.

Additionally, call center reps can help you avoid common customer experience hiccups that occur during the busiest times. Clients don't have patience to be put on hold or get passed around to several different associates. It's important that any issues are resolved the first time a customer calls or it can have a serious impact on long-term satisfaction and brand loyalty. Even a 1 percent improvement in first call resolution rates can translate to increased savings in service costs, All Business Experts stated. A call center can also improve availability outside of the winery's standard hours of operation, which is a growing concern if you're trying to increase online sales and want to provide help to those who may need it after you've shut your doors for the evening. 

Most importantly, effective telesales reps can boost your DTC sales without increasing your workload. Because these employees are skilled in customer service delivery, they can often turn inquiries into opportunities to upsell and cross-sell, a highly valuable addition to holiday sales. A personalized approach to selling that relies on past customer data can significantly improve your DTC numbers.

 

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