Does Anyone Answer Phone Calls Anymore?

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Does anyone answer phone calls anymore?

The official answer is: Not really.

As far as trends show, phone calls will always have a place, but people would rather type. There will always be times where speaking is better than typing, but for now the general public says: Why take several minutes to do something that could be done in a few seconds?

There’s plenty of research and opinion as to why answered calls are steadily on the decline. Call it convenience, call it control, call it efficiency. Call it whatever you want, you’re probably right.

The bottom line is that people prefer text, email, and instant message (live chat) over speaking on the phone. Whatever your particular opinion, people tend to view typing as better than speaking. Here are a few reasons why.

Every one of us has been burned by sales calls.

And by unwelcome family conversations. We’re shy of answering calls, because we either don’t know what’s on the other end, or we don’t want what’s on the other end.

Software Advice ran a study with interesting yet unsurprising results. About 10% of adults are willing to answer calls from toll-free numbers. 15% are willing to answer calls from out of town. And still less than 30% of adults are willing to answer unrecognized local numbers.

Related: Should You Never Call a Sales Lead Again?

This doesn’t mean calls to them are answered 10%, 15% 30% of the time. It means that if they aren’t currently occupied, they would be willing to answer, which brings up the next reason no one answers their phone anymore.

People are busy.

Phone calls are often distractions. It’s not that the person calling doesn’t have something valuable worth sharing. They might! But that value can often be given in the form of an email, text, or any other way that doesn’t derail whatever you're working on.

Related: How Can My Business Get More of Consumers' Time?

People spend up to 15 seconds reading an email or text, yet the average phone call is almost 2 minutes. Plus it can take us up to twenty minutes or more to regain focus after being distracted! And we understand this.

Why accept a distraction that could ruin your next half hour? If it’s important, they can leave a message. (Except no one listens to voice mail, either, so it would still need to be typed.)

We generally want to be in control and respected.

We want to dictate our own schedules and tasks, and we want our efforts to be considered. In today’s world, phone calls are inherently presumptive. You call a person when you view your own goals or desires as more important than the goals and desires of the person you’re calling.

The unspoken response is often: How dare you try to undermine my work? When we answer phone calls, we give up control to the caller - something people generally hate to do.

If you’re looking for an exact number of how many calls are answered, there really isn’t one.

There's no conclusive study freely available (not that we can find, at least). But all the data and trends (probably your own experiences, too) show that people prefer typing to speaking.

Even though phone calls can be valuable in certain situations, people really don’t answer their phones anymore. People really only answer phone calls when they think it will make them more money, or when they want to hear someone special's voice.

People have found better ways of communicating that keep things under their control while weeding out unwanted solicitors.

Related: 73 Texting Statistics That Answer All Your Questions