41 million. That’s approximately how many people in the United States speak Spanish at home, according to the US Census Bureau. We’re talking about 13.5% of the entire population. And given that those findings are several years old at the time of this writing, the number of Spanish-speakers in the United States is likely even higher by now.
If your company doesn’t offer customer service, sales, support, and other business services in Spanish, you’re missing out on a sizable and growing population of potential customers and clients.
No hablo español? No problem. You can make use of bilingual professional answering services, such as Ruby, to serve your Spanish-speaking customers easily and cost-effectively.
The benefits of bilingual professional answering services.
Bilingualism is fast becoming a necessary part of doing business. By some estimates, the US will have more Spanish speakers than any other country by 2050.
More and more consumers now expect service in English and Spanish. The US is a big and diverse country, and multilingual support is already common in many states—including California, Texas, New York, New Mexico, and Florida.
But beyond being an imperative, bilingual customer service can deliver numerous benefits for your company and the people you serve. Here are just a few advantages of using a bilingual professional answering service.
You’ll gain a better understanding of your customers—so you can serve them better.
To serve your customers or clients sufficiently, you need to speak their language—literally. Although most Spanish speakers in the US are also fluent or semi-fluent in English, it’s not always their preferred language. That means you’re causing them an inconvenience when you oblige them to use it. Monolingual customer service not only disappoints people (and potentially turns them away), but tends to create significant gaps in communication and mutual understanding.
People tend to feel different when they speak a different language. They may not be able to explain themselves as well as they could in their primary language. Humor and important conversational nuances may get lost in translation. When you compel your Spanish-speaking customers to speak English, you’re forcing them and yourself into an often-challenging compromise, creating a largely transactional relationship rather than a human one.
Bilingual professional answering services ensure that every customer or client—whether English- or Spanish-dominant—is treated warmly and compassionately.
This allows you to collect better information about the people you serve. A bilingual receptionist or customer service agent can ask more detailed, targeted questions about Spanish speakers’ needs and preferences. With bilingual professional answering services on your side, you can sort your leads better, convert them into buyers more often, and more capably handle their questions and concerns.
Your customers will gain a better understanding of your business.
By overcoming the language barrier, your business can empower your buyers to make better decisions, avoid frustrations, and more easily navigate the customer/client journey.
Every person who interacts with your business should know what you do and why you do it. Bilingual professional answering services can help you communicate your mission, philosophy, values, and brand identity—the things that make your business special—to more customers or clients.
But it’s not just about the big-picture stuff. A bilingual answering service also helps you manage expectations and inform customers or clients about the various details involved in interfacing with your company, shopping, or accessing products or services. You’ll ensure they can make an appointment, sign up for a service, receive a refund, or manage another part of the process with minimal errors and confusion. You can provide them with frequently asked questions, instructions for visiting your location, tailored help, and more—in the language they use every day.
When you use a professional answering service like Ruby, you tell your team of virtual receptionists everything your customers need to know about your business. We communicate it in English or Spanish to every caller (or website visitor using live chat).
This is particularly important for hospitals, doctor’s offices, dentists, and other medical and healthcare professionals. When you have a responsibility to communicate clearly and attentively to every patient, you need a bilingual answering service.
You’ll increase customer loyalty.
This is the big one. Serve people better—in the language they prefer to use—and they’ll reward you with their business and loyalty. Bilingualism and customer retention go hand in hand.
Regardless of the language they speak, people prefer to talk to other people—not machines—who can help them quickly, listen to them empathetically, and laugh at their jokes. It’s all about making your customers or clients feel welcomed and comfortable with professional, friendly, capable receptionists. In an era in which customer experience increasingly determines business success, you can’t afford to leave anyone out.
Plus, happy customers tend to share their experiences with others, generating lucrative word-of-mouth referrals for your business. Make one Spanish speaker’s day and you could reach a larger community of their friends, family members, neighbors, and co-workers.
Ruby’s here to help you expand your reach.
Ready to review? Bilingual professional answering services can…
- help you better understand your customers or clients,
- help you better serve your customers or clients,
- empower the people you serve,
- drive customer loyalty,
- generate powerful word-of-mouth for your business.
Again, these are just a few of the benefits of using a bilingual professional answering service. There are lots of even broader reasons to bring multilingual culture into your organization. You’ll see a greater diversity of ideas, fuel innovation, uncover new marketing opportunities, and much more.
That said, you don’t need to hire a full-time bilingual receptionist to meet your Spanish-speaking customers’ or clients’ needs. Ruby provides bilingual professional answering services designed for growing businesses like yours—available remotely and on-demand.
Curious to learn more about live virtual receptionists? We have a guide for that.