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Abandoned Calls: Tips and Importance

Published on March 15, 2022
Last modified on March 31, 2022
abandoned calls

Have you ever disconnected a call because the wait time seemed to go on endlessly? And do you worry that your customers may face a similar issue?

Well, your concern is perfectly valid. In fact, there is even a name for this common issue faced by multiple businesses – call abandonment.

In this article, you will get a deeper insight into what abandoned calls are, how to calculate call abandoned rates, their importance, and more.


What are abandoned calls?

An abandoned call is one that has been abandoned or disconnected before the caller can reach or connect with the agent. An abandoned call may at times also be called an ‘abandoned contact’.

Inbound calls are often abandoned due to the caller being frustrated with the time being on hold. However, in outbound calls, the reason for abandoned calls is quite different.

Outbound calls are usually abandoned due to the automated dialer or ACD disconnecting the call. This happens when live contact is established, but there is no agent available to take up the call.

A simple way to eliminate the problem of abandoned outbound calls is to use a predictive dialer.

Reasons behind call abandonment

  • The caller hung up before the call got connected to an agent,
  • While waiting in the IVR queue or
  • They hung up without leaving any voicemail.

Additionally, there could also be other reasons as to why calls are abandoned. For example, calls that come in after working hours, connectivity issues/problems, etc.

Read: A complete guide on call management


What is the call abandoned formula?

Call abandonment and call abandonment rates are actually very important metrics for businesses. But, before we explore that further, let’s look at how to calculate call abandonment rate.

Step 1 – You will have to divide the number of abandoned calls by the number of total calls received. 

Step 2 – You will then have to multiply your answer by 100. This will give you the call abandonment rate.

The formula for calculating call abandonment rate

Call Abandonment Rate = [Number of abandoned inbound calls/Number of inbound calls made by customers] * 100

Calculating the right call abandonment rate can help evaluate exactly how effective a call center is.


What are call abandoned rates?

Call abandoned rates refer to the number of inbound calls that are received by call centers but abandoned before any conversation. 

Why do they matter?

If you are a call center manager, a customer support manager, or a business owner who values phone support as a critical channel, you should monitor your call center’s call abandonment rate from time to time.

Call abandonment rate is one of the main call center metrics that can help measure a call center’s efficiency. In addition, it helps you gauge the quality of the customer experience. 

Having a low rate of abandoned calls implies that most of your calls are being catered to. In contrast, a high call abandonment rate means you need to rethink your call center strategy and maybe even consider upgrading your call center software.


What is a good call abandonment rate?

Keeping call center margins in mind, your call center typically has a rate of around 5% – 8%. However, in some circumstances, it can even jump to 20%.

When estimating a good call abandonment rate, remember the key is to keep it as low as possible.


Tips on how you can reduce call abandonment rate

  • Announce the estimated wait time to your customers
  • Occupy their time (maybe by playing on-hold music)
  • Offer the option of self service (IVR)
  • Overflow the calls that have been waiting too long



You must remember that it is impossible for any call center to completely avoid abandoned calls. However, there are several steps that you can take to reduce your abandonment rate as well as make sure customers are attended to properly.

You should also keep in mind that in addition to these tips, you should also consider investing in software. A software can help manage things better as well as help your business grow.

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