The abandon rate is the percentage of customers who abandon or hang up on a live chat session before a phone call is completed.

This is an important call center KPI because it indicates how satisfied customers are with your agents.

There are many ways to lower the abandon rate and in this article we will discuss 7 of them.

What is the abandon rate in a call center?

The abandon rate in a call center is the industry standard for the number of customers who hang up or disconnect while on the phone with a customer service representative.

How do you measure the abandon rate?

Calculating the abandon rate in your call center is done with the formula below:

You take total number of incoming calls, minus the number of abandoned calls, minus the number of successful calls. You divide this number by the number of incoming calls minus the number of abandoned calls times one hundred.

Suppose you were offered 100 calls per day and 25 were abandoned, but 70 were successful. Then the calculation becomes as follows: 100 – 25 – 20 /(100 – 25) x 100.

What is an acceptable abandon rate?

An acceptable abandon rate is so low that customers are not frustrated. Weak, huh?

In the call center world, the industry standard is at an average abandon rate between 5% and 8%.

Why are calls hung up?

There can be a number of reasons why customers hang up, such as:

  • Long wait times: In fact, a Harvard Business Review study found that 43% of customers hang up if they have to wait longer than 5 minutes. Therefore, it is important to have a sufficient number of agents to handle the number of calls coming in.
  • On hold: A survey by the Keller Fay Group found that nearly half (49%) of all callers put on hold hang up. Therefore, it is important to have a system that allows customers to easily leave their contact information so they can be called back when an agent is available.
  • Not being helped: A survey by The New York Times Customer Insight Group found that 47% of customers hung up because they could not find anyone to help them with their problem. Therefore, it is important that agents are knowledgeable about the products and services offered and that they have agents available to answer questions.

How do you monitor the abandon rate?

When it comes to your call center, you want to make sure you are doing everything you can to keep your customers happy. One way to do this is to monitor your abandon rate and use call center software, such as Steam-connect, to do so.

In Steam-connect, you create your own reports and stay on top of your call center performance 24/7. Also, be sure to read this blog with our tips & tricks around call center reporting.

How do you lower the abandon rate?

Have you calculated your abandon rate and are you shocked by the outcome? Don’t panic. There are a number of things you who can do to lower the abandon rate:

1. Train your agents well

One of the most important things you can do to lower your call center’s abandon rate is to properly train your agents.

Well-trained employees are better able to handle customer inquiries and solve problems quickly and efficiently.

Moreover, well-trained agents are more likely to keep a caller on the line until the problem is resolved, rather than transfer the call or put the caller on hold.

2. Use a system for recovering abandoned calls

Callback systems for abandoned calls are designed to automatically call back customers who hung up before their problem was resolved.

These systems can be very effective in reducing the number of dropped calls because they allow agents to reach customers who might otherwise have been lost.

3. Offer self-service

Self-service options, such as an interactive voice response (IVR) system, can also help lower abandon rates.

By allowing customers to solve their problem without speaking with an agent, you can free up agents to focus on more complex issues and reduce wait times for those who do need to speak with an agent.

4. Keep a close eye on your wait times

Monitoring wait times is another important step in lowering your call center’s abandon rate. If customers are on hold for too long, they are likely to hang up before their problem is resolved.

By controlling wait times and making sure they stay within an acceptable range, you prevent customers from getting frustrated and hanging up.

5. Provide excellent customer service

Excellent customer service is one of the best ways to optimize your call center’s performance.

Customers who feel they are treated well are less likely to hang up out of frustration or anger. Instead, they are more likely to stay on the line and give you a chance to solve their problem.

6. Ensure calls are routed efficiently

Another way to reduce call abandonment rates in your call center is to ensure that calls are routed efficiently.

This means that calls are routed to the appropriate agent based on the caller’s needs. In addition, it is smart to use que prioritization to minimize caller wait times.

7. Monitor your conversations and provide feedback

Finally, you need to monitor conversations and provide regular feedback to agents. In this way, you identify areas where improvement is needed and can discover any patterns in abandoned calls.

Steam-connect offers a fine call recording capability, and you can even whisper if needed.


A high abandonment rate in your call center can be frustrating and it costs you money.

By following the tips in this article, you can begin to lower your abandon rate and improve your customer service.

Want to spar about optimizing your call center processes? Then book a free, no-obligation consultation today. You are guaranteed to learn something.