CATEGORY: Virtual Receptionist Services

10 Ways a Virtual Receptionist Can Help a Small Business to Succeed

Small businesses simply don’t have the time or resources to manage everything on their plates. Consider this interesting factoid. Even though we are living in a Digital Age when technology is commonplace, nearly half of small businesses still don’t have an online presence. Factor into consideration that the majority of their customers prefer (and sometimes only) to engage with their vendors through digital channels, and this is a huge business gap.

Help Needed!

It is no wonder that many of these same businesses cannot find time to manage their daily schedules and appointments, field incoming sales and customer service calls, and perform basic administrative tasks. The answer is not to work more hours or to multitask faster. As a small business, you and your team are very likely already working at full capacity.

Yet hiring a full-time or even a part-time assistant simply isn’t feasible. Non-revenue producing staff is not something most small businesses can afford. Further, new tax and benefit requirements such as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) and new paid sick leave laws make it even more prohibitive.

So what is the alternative? Missed customer or prospect calls, delays in getting customers answers to their questions or problems, difficulty scheduling meetings, among other administrative functions are not the solution. The answer is outside of your company. Just as technology has disrupted many other areas of the economy, it has changed how a growing number of small businesses manage their administrative tasks—and frankly even more.

10 Ways a Virtual Assistant Can Help

Davinci Virtual recognized the potential impact virtual assistants could have on small businesses when we were found nearly a decade ago. Thousands of small businesses use our Davinci Live Receptionist Services so that they can focus on their businesses. The combination of the right technology with a personal human touch enables our small business customers to extend their brand experience and reach without adding any new staff to their teams.

What are some of the ways Davinci Live Receptionists can help a small businesses? It begins with the basics:

1. Call forwarding and screening.

Incoming calls can be screened by a member of your dedicated receptionist team and routed to the appropriate employee in your company or to any phone number you elect to use.

2. Voice mail management.

You can receive all voicemail in your email inbox, thus eliminating the need to call your voicemail. In addition to this voicemail-to-email capability, you can convert all of your email to voice; read, search, store, and print messages just like email.

3. Appointment scheduling.

Appointments get scheduled in real time and include email alerts and/or text notifications for new or upcoming appointments.

4. Dedicated local and toll-free numbers.

Establish a business presence in a new city and make it easy for customers to get in touch with you by using dedicated local and toll-free numbers.

5. Advanced call routing.

Prospects and customers can reach you regardless of where you are at by using advanced call routing.

6. Administrative tasks and work.

Administrative tasks can consume valuable time you need to spend on the business. Outsource tasks such as travel planning, delivery scheduling, and meeting support so that you can focus on your business.

7. Auto receptionist.

For businesses with a high volume of inbound calls, a full-featured auto receptionist can be employed to route them to the right person or voicemail within your organization.

8. Online faxing.

Going paperless makes full sense when it comes to faxing. With online faxing, small businesses can receive and send all of their faxes via email and to read incoming faxes within email.

9. Audio conferencing.

Phone conferencing is an assumed capability for most companies. Small businesses can integrate their audio conferencing needs into their virtual receptionist service, simplifying management and allaying costs.

10. Special FAQs and complex call flows.

Creating a call flow process will help optimize the time spent speaking the prospects and customers on the phone. Route calls to a specific department, answer their FAQs, and provide them with product support.

In addition to the above, small businesses can get more strategic in how they leverage their Davinci Live Receptionists team. Because our dedicated virtual teams are experts on their customers’ businesses, the live receptionists can perform outbound calling services as well. This is where they become particularly valuable, often delivering bottom-line results for our small business customers. These activities range from lead generation, to outbound appointment scheduling, to surveys and market research, to subscription renewals and sales.

Thousands of small businesses across the United States experience the benefits of Davinci Live Receptionist Services every day. For more information on Live Receptionist Services and how our team of professionals can help your small business, visit


Davinci 101: Live chat services drive more sales and create a better customer service experience

One of the most popular add-on services among our current customers is our live web chat service. More and more people are finding out the convenience and effectiveness of having online live chat as part of their overall business strategy. If you have spent any significant time on the Davinci website, you have probably seen a peek into how the live chat service works. If not, here’s the basic rundown.

When a visitor comes to a live chat enabled website, they browse from page to page as they normally would. Based on a set of defined rules (time, number pages visited, etc.) the website may automatically prompt the visitor if they would like to engage in live chat with a representative. If they choose yes, they’re immediately connected to a Davinci live chat receptionist. Once connected, the live chat receptionist can help with customer service inquiries, ordering, or just helping the website visitor to understand the site, services, and products. Live chat services are way more effective than hoping that the visitor fills out a contact form.

Live chat for business can be a true game changer for entrepreneurs for many reasons. First, live chat is a proven method for increasing qualified sales leads. Second, providing a live chat service for your current and potential clients shows that you’re committed to providing great communication. Finally, it frees you up as a business owner to focus more on the bigger picture or other important tasks than gathering leads. Having a Davinci Live Receptionist available to manage website live chat opportunities will greatly increase your website’s overall ability to sell and communicate.

We provide the best live chat solutions for all websites, including WordPress and custom built sites. To find out more about adding live web chat services to your website through Davinci, contact our company’s sales team at 888.863.3423.


4 Reasons to Go Virtual Versus In-House for Receptionists and Assistants

One of the biggest challenges facing many small businesses today is the lack of time and resources. Both are finite and the lack of one or both can impede a company’s ability to grow and expand. Recognizing virtual receptionists can help them overcome these obstacles, as rapidly growing numbers of small businesses are embracing virtual receptionists. Some of the issues small businesses seek to solve include:

  • Cannot afford a full-time receptionist
  • Do not want to assume tax and benefit responsibilities for full-time staff
  • Unable to be available 24×7
  • Managing schedules is time-consuming and complex
  • Need for the flexibility to scale up and scale down resources


With the help of virtual receptionists (or assistants), small businesses can focus on building their businesses and delivering great solutions and services for their customers rather than spending valuable time on administrative tasks. In addition, the potential use cases for virtual receptionists are much broader in scope than for in-house receptionists.

A side-by-side comparison of Davinci Live Receptionists to in-house receptionists evinces some important differentiators. The takeaway: the aggregate is much greater than an individual contributor.

1. Collective approach. One advantage is our team approach. Dedicated teams of Live Receptionist professionals are experts on the products and services of the customers for which they serve. Their collective experience and knowledge is a greater multiplier over in-house staff (team compared to one individual).

2. Business agility. Because an entire team of professionals is trained on each of our customer’s products and services, Davinci customers have the ability to scale up and down to flexibly accommodate shifts in business requirements. With Davinci Live Receptionist Services, small businesses suddenly achieve the agility of a large business without assuming any of the same risks.

3. Professional capabilities. The Davinci Live Receptionist team is trained in a wide range of business capabilities. For example, rarely—if ever—is an in-house assistant capable of handling outbound sales calls in addition to answering calls. But in the case of our professional team, managing outbound sales calls is a proven capability across a wide range of industries.

4. Mentoring, quality control. We take employee development very seriously and created a skills-based and career-path staffing model that allows us to recruit, train, and retain champion professionals. Our Davinci Live Receptionist team graduates through a multi-tier development program. Throughout this entire process, our professionals are coached and mentored as well as evaluated on their performance in serving our customers’ prospects and customers. This highly structured approach simply cannot be replicated in a small business environment where the receptionist/assistant is one person who works in a silo.

Hundreds of small businesses across the United States experience the benefits of Davinci Live Receptionist Services every day, and their great reviews have made us the best provider for over a decade now. For more information on Davinci Live Receptionist Services and how our team of professionals can help your small business, visit


Making First Impressions Count: 9 Factors for Consideration

In his best-selling book Blink, Malcolm Gladwell finds that first impressions—whether professional or personal—happen in a matter of seconds.[1] Individuals connect with other people and companies based on their initial perception. Further, getting beyond that experience is nearly impossible once the connection is made. Indeed, research shows that first impressions even overrule facts in the lasting perceptions a person has of another person or business.[2]

In a Matter of Seconds

Twenty-years ago, first impressions meant the first human-to-human interaction—either voice or face to face. But technology created a complete disruption. It started with the Age of the Internet and then expanded to include any number of engagement channels, including through different devices.

The amount of time it takes someone to form a digital first impression is just a fast—if not more so—than through voice and face to face. Indeed, studies show that a website’s first impression takes less than five seconds. And while conscious decisions may take a bit longer, subconscious decisions may even take place in less those five seconds.

All Business Sizes

When it comes to the size of a business, what applies to large or even medium-size companies also applies to small businesses. Further, outside of a handful of more expensive engagement channels such as television or radio ads, the breadth of factors a small business must consider is virtually the same.

Small businesses that understand how to leverage the full range of both traditional and digital engagement channels generate better outcomes than those that do not.

The reality is that prospects and customers want to interact with brands anytime, anywhere, and on any device. The proof is in the results: digitally engaged small businesses are more than twice as likely as those with low levels or no digital engagement to be growing.[3]

A Checklist of 9 Factors

Tackling these can be a daunting challenge for a small business that is already stretched in meeting existing customer needs. Understanding the basic checklist and turning to third-party providers for help in the right places can go a long way for a small business. The following are the most important factors a small business needs to ensure it has checked off.

  1. A company’s name, logo, tagline, and core messaging must resonate with prospects and customers. They must exude trust and confidence to engender a connection.
  1. Seventy-five percent of people—B2C and B2B—make judgments about a company’s credibility based on the design of the website.[4] Those that are perceived as great looking are also perceived as usable and trustworthy.
  1. Social Media. Social media is a must-have for businesses. Prospects and customers will inevitably engage with companies through their social channels. For example, 80 percent of consumers look at online reviews before making purchase decisions.

There are a few quick tips that will make social engagement effective for small businesses: a) connect social with CRM systems to track engagement with prospects and customers, b) integrate social into other channels such as the website, emails, and other marketing and customer service platforms, c) use social to generate leads by monitoring and responding to prospect buying signals, and d) leverage social to monitor and respond to potential customer service issues.

  1. A company is perceived as a thought leader when it provides prospects and customers with content that engages and educates. And because every prospect and customer does not have the same requirements and pain points, a one-size-fits-all content approach may not always work for a small business. Providing prospects and customers with a personalized content experience, whereby they are offered content based on their online behavior and known business requirements can make that first impression even more impressive.
  1. An overwhelming number of customers search the Web before making a purchasing decision. For B2B searches, prospects do not engage vendor until they are 70 percent through the decision-making process. It therefore is critical that companies are found. Websites must be search friendly and have SEO (search engine optimization) capabilities such as domain redirection, a site map, a unique title, a phone number and local address, among other elements.
  1. Thirteen percent of the world’s population will access the Internet from their smartphones only this year. That represents more than 1 billion people.[5] Whether it is mobile or tablet devices or even wearables, B2C and B2B customers assume they will have an omnichannel experience.

Here, small businesses need to ensure their websites have responsive design for desktop, tablet, and mobile engagement. They may even want to offer an app—which is different than a mobile website—in certain instances.

  1. Small businesses are not always available to take calls from customers. And hiring a dedicated employee or team of employees to field inbound calls may not be the most effective—in terms of results and cost—strategy.

Going with a third-party provider such as Davinci Live Receptionist Service allows small businesses to have the voice of a big company. Able to take both inbound sales and service calls, the Davinci Live Receptionist Service team provides not one dedicated individual but a dedicated team that can scale to meet new business requirements.

  1. Live Chat. The online window to win or lose a prospect or customer is less than 90 seconds—and technology disruption continues to shrink this window.[6] While offering them customized content and a voice option, this often is not enough. Millennials (or the “Digital-Only Generation) prefer to engage with each other and their vendors through digital channels. Here, more than 75 percent prefer live web chat instead over voice.

Like voice, this is another area where small businesses should consider a third-party provider. Davinci Live Web Chat enables a small business to leverage the same team of dedicated experts providing the Live Receptionist Service when a prospect or customer opts to chat. And if the need arises to transfer the engagement from live web chat to voice, it is a seamless experience.

  1. Analytics and Business Intelligence. The fact that prospects and customers engage with small businesses across a number of different channels and devices means the magnitude of data captured from those interactions increases significantly. But this data is only good if it is used. Understanding that information in both aggregate and segmented forms can provide valuable insights on the first impressions prospects and customers gain and how best to improve those.

Davinci’s approach is to look at data across each of the different engagement channels—from web, to voice, to live web chat—and to provide actionable insights to our customers. Our integrated Live Receptionist Service and Live Web Chat approach makes this a seamless experience. Davinci Live Receptionist Service and Live Web Chat First impressions count. This is why we created Davinci Live Receptionist Service and Live Web Chat. Check out how Live Receptionist Service and Live Web Chat might be a fit for your business.


[1] A study by Princeton psychologists claims that first impressions take even less than a few seconds (Janine Willis and Alexander Todorov, “First Impressions: Making Up Your Mind After a 100-Ms Exposure to a Face,” Psychology Science 17 [July, 2006], 592-98). Rather, it finds judgments are made in a matter of a tenth of a second.

[2] “First Impressions: When Appearances Matter,” Society for Personality and Social Psychology,” February 13, 2014.


Connected Small Businesses: How Australian Small Businesses Are Growing in the Digital Economy,” Deloitte Access Economics, 2013.


Stanford Guidelines for Web Credibility,” Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab, June 2012.


Global Mobile 2014 Survey,” IDG Global Solutions, January 24, 2015.


Connecting with Customers,” LivePerson, November 19, 2013.


Live Web Chat: Personalized Digital Service

Millennials are changing how companies engage with their customers. Fifty-six percent indicate they prefer to use live web chat instead of using the phone to get answers to their questions. This preference is noteworthy when compared alongside the response of individuals who are 35 and older; only 27 percent prefer live web chat over phone.[1] The difference is dramatic.

The need to deliver an omnichannel customer service experience is pivotal for not only midsize businesses and enterprises, but it also just as important for small businesses. Millennials expect their vendors to provide an omnichannel experience for customer service, and they will let their feet (or in the case of live web chat fingers) doing the “talking” for them—namely, they will take their business elsewhere.

Delivering an Exceptional Digital Experience

Delivering a great digital experience engenders tangible business value. When customers are satisfied with their digital experience, 57 percent of them communicate their experience to others. In addition, 41 percent of them recommend that someone make a purchase. Great customer service also translates into operational efficiency: satisfied customers request customer support 62 percent less often than other customers. [2]

Failing to deliver customer service isn’t an option. Eighty-nine percent of customers will stop doing business with a brand because of bad service.[3] When businesses restrict themselves to one engagement channel such as phone, they put themselves at substantial risk—particularly if phone isn’t manned and managed to meet customer requirements (see Davinci Virtual Receptionist Services to find out how we can help on this front).

Hosted Live Web Chat

Small business owners likely agree with this assessment, and many of them would like to offer their customers live web chat. However, they simply cannot due to time constraints and the lack of resources. This is why Davinci launched Live Web Chat Services last year. Using the same technology we employ on our website, we provide small businesses a hosted live web chat option.

Each of our web chat clients gets a virtual live web chat team. Their team engages web visitors in a customized live web chat session based on the potential client’s online behavior; includingwhere they came from before landing on the website and what they have looked at while browsing the site. This dedicated team of Davinci professionals offers visitors in-depth customer service, answers frequently asked questions, and helps visitors find the information they need. The dedicated Davinci team also engages with prospects, answering their questions and guiding them through the purchase lifecycle.

For Davinci customers with Live Receptionist Services, the Davinci Live Web Chat team can seamlessly transfer visitors from web chat sessions to the phone as needed.

With Davinci Live Web Chat Services, small businesses have the ability to engage digitally with their customers, transforming static, informational websites into an interactive extension of their business. Davinci customers have access to the entire chat history, detailed reports, and much more. In addition, when prompt escalation is needed, the Davinci team can send relevant chat information to the small business owner’s smartphone—either via text or email.

The “Rise” of the Millennials

Offering customers a digital engagement option for customer service is no longer an option—or “nice to have.” With the “Rise of the Millennials”—and for that matter growing digital adoption across all generational and demographic groups—live web chat is a requisite.

Contact us today to find out more about Davinci Live Web Chat Services or any of our other services.

If you happened to miss our recent posts on “Omnichannel Customer Service and the Small Business,” and “The Virtual Live Receptionist: Available and Knowledgeable,” make sure to check them out. And to ensure you don’t miss future posts of interest, simply sign up for our blog and receive notifications whenever we have a new post.

[1] Lucy Holloway, “Web Chat, Live Chat, We All Chat, We Like Chat,” Business2Community, February 11, 2015.

[2] Cited by Michelle Killebrew, “World-Class Customer Service in the Digital Age,” ClickZ, May 14, 2014.

[3]How to Attract Customers (and Retain Them),”, February 16, 2015.