One of the biggest trends in customer expectations is having immediacy to speak with a customer service agent around their schedule, instead of just from nine to five. Studies show that over 69% of consumers expect to talk with a customer support specialist in real-time and of that, 60% believe that the relationship should be connected. For example, if a customer leaves a message via a social media site like Facebook, they expect that the customer service agent who follows up should have all the information they need from the get-go.
The desire that consumers have requires a multi or omnichannel approach to your customer service support. One of the most critical components of such an “omnichannel” approach is having Live Chat support. Live Chat support software allows customers to reach out and have their questions answered without having to leave an email to be returned or to find their phone to call.
Customer service agents are available in real-time so that they can address whatever question a customer has about a product, service or issue they are having.
Live Chat offers many benefits for businesses that are looking to enhance their customer satisfaction. But these are the six most critical ones.
Live Chat is the Preferred Support Channel for Consumers
A recent study found that 41% say that live chat functions are by far their favorite means of communication. Whether it is used to foster sales or to give people real-time support to trouble-shoot, customers enjoy having the instantaneous response that it provides:
- Not many customers want to chase down their phone, and then a number, and then wait on hold
- A Live Chat function makes a running transcript of the conversation so if it is interrupted, you can go back to exactly where you left off
- When combined with other features like voice call options, screen send or share screenshots, it makes resolving issues easy and efficient.
Live Chat Connects the Customer
Not all people have the capacity to or want to directly speak with a customer satisfaction agent. There are all sorts of reasons that someone might not be able to speak directly with an agent such as hearing issues or heavy accents that can get in the way of communicating. A live chat function can bridge any logistical ways that conversations can get lost in translation, literally.
Live Chat Leads to More First Contact Resolution Results
Live Chat is an excellent way to help people with their smaller and less complex problems. That way, the lines to speak to someone to get answers to more challenging issues are available when you need them. Live Chat frees up your customer service team to better use their time and resources. A study involving the cleaning brand Vax, showed that using live chat increased their first contact resolution from 78% to 87%. It also helped to reduce the time needed for consumers to reach out to the phone line by going from 81% to nearly 77%.
Live Chat also helps with improving tools for analysis by improving the customer service agent’s experience by:
- A transcript is provided for each interaction – it records theme, keyword, sales channel, customer type, and support ticket results
- You can spot common themes according to questions asked that help with navigational problems related to your support content
- It feeds consumer data directly to your CRM, which allows for a 360 degree perspective for your customers
- The data you receive can help to generate content about the most frequently asked questions, which enhances the consumers' ability to self-service
Live Chat Helps to Build Trust
By giving the consumer the ability to reach out to you when they need you most, it helps to build trust in your company and brand. Allowing the consumer various streams of contact, depending on what they are most comfortable with, gives the impression that you are responsive and care about what your customers want.
Live Chat also allows people the ability to talk in real-time outside regular business hours like evenings and weekends, when most call centers are closed. The idea of Live Chat is that you are addressing the consumer around their schedule and for their direct needs.
Make sure that your Live Chat agents are well-versed and experienced in Customer Service. And also make sure that they know the different demands that might be associated with a Live Chat versus a phone call. Look for employees who are proficient on the computer and who can type quickly. Also make sure to find someone who speaks well and writes concisely understanding that people want a friendly answer via chat, with the same niceties that they get from talking with someone in person.
Live Chat Can Help to Enhance Sales
Live Chat is typically thought of as a part of help desk software, but that doesn’t mean that it should be limited to just customer support. Statistics continue to show that it is viewed very favorably by consumers, which means that it can play a significantly positive role as a sales tool as well. The study done by Vax, also resulted in a 26% increase in their year to year sales via their internet. When you use live chat for more than just customer support and in targeted ways, you can:
- Reduce high drop-out rates throughout the checkout and sales process. A live Chat agent can helpfully walk the consumer through the process of completing the sale
- If you notice that analytics tell you that there is a high volume of customers that go to the website, yet don’t follow through to buying, a live chat agent can be responsible for targeting them, asking and answering questions, and handling things at the moment so they don’t drop out before they buy.
AI Chatbots versus Live Chat Software
One of the ways that companies have tried to enhance their customers' experience is through using AI chatbots. But AI chatbots are not the same as live chat software, and they might be cheaper, and they can help with smaller problems and tasks.
A website that uses an AI chatbot works by using natural language processing and machine learning to help generate responses. It is an excellent tool for things like updating the order of a shipment or finding a sales receipt. Therefore, it is revolutionizing many industries' processing.
The benefits of AI chatbots are just now starting to inundate the market. And many companies are starting to use them to save time so that their agents can handle the more complex questions. It has also increased customer satisfaction because there are lesser wait times for customer’s concerns to be addressed. There is little argument that AI Chatbots are becoming an integral part of efficient and effective customer service teams.
Live Chat is one of the biggest things taking over the website world for a good reason; they cater to the customer. Not only do they allow customers to get their questions answered immediately, even when call centers have closed, they are also helping to drive customers to purchase where they might not have followed through. So, from everything to customer support to sales, live chat and AI chatbots are becoming a critical part of updating your customer experience and getting ahead of the competition. Ready to sign up? Click here.