Your business is growing rapidly and the phone is ringing right off the hook, but somehow you’re still getting mediocre customer service ratings online and frustrated customers in your place of business.

Despite your best efforts, the word is getting out about the difficulties customers have experienced – and you’ve got to do something. In times like these, a telephone answering service can quickly turn your customers’ frowns upside down.

There are lots of things a virtual telephone answering service can do for you, but these four will help improve your customer service ratings almost immediately:

Catching call overflow. Your call volume waxes and wanes through the day (and perhaps night), but you simply can’t justify hiring another person to answer a few extra calls. Instead of letting those callers go to voicemail, or worse — continually calling until they get a human — your answering service can handle the overflow calls you can’t catch. Your callers get a human operator and your budget is spared — it’s a win-win.

Around the clock availability. Unlike your employees, who must eventually go home, many outsourced answering services are available 24/7. This means there’s always a person to man the phones, even late at night and on holidays. Customers love the sound of a human voice and will appreciate the effort.

Emergency call routing. Depending on the business you’re in, your customers may call with real emergencies from time to time. Having a human manning the line in case one of these callers is trying to reach you allows for a prompt response. Instead of hoping you check your voicemail, your customers can be put in direct contact with you or a designated employee for just such occasions.

Disaster recovery services. Tornadoes, hurricanes and earthquakes can seriously disrupt your business and the lives of everyone in your community. In these trying times, your customers may turn to you for help. Disaster recovery services are designed to reassure your customers that all is well and give them instructions, provided by you, to help get business — and life — back to normal faster.

Hiring an answering service is a great move if you’re not ready to contract the full time staff it takes to keep the phone lines open all the time. Not only will this hire save money over the cost of permanent employees, you’ll also have immediate access to a variety of customer service professionals who will do whatever they can to ensure your customers always feel like they’ve been heard.