Proactive live chat is a fantastic tool for increasing overall engagement on your website, increasing conversions and improving the customer experience. In a nutshell proactive live chat is an initial automated message generator which is used to encourage customers which are browsing your website to have a conversation with your customer service representatives through your chat window. If you want an even clearer understanding of what proactive live chat is, check out our meaty blog post on the subject here.
To use proactive chat you need to have a good understanding of what it can achieve and how to use it without annoying your customers. If a customer receives an invite to chat with you every 5 seconds, they will simply leave your site or probably tell you and your customer service team to get lost. A similar event may occur if your automated conversation starters come out of the blue and seem irrelevant to the customer's shopping experience.
If you know enough about proactive live chat to not wind up all of your customers then these 3 ways to use proactive live chat in eCommerce are ideas on how you could improve your engagement levels and make more sales. If you're new to proactive messages or live chat software in general then these ideas may not have the technical details you need to go ahead and set them up straight away, perhaps instead you'd like to get in touch and allow us to work our magic and increase your engagement and conversion levels for you.
Preventing Basket Abandonment
Basket abandonment is a known issue for every eCommerce website; on average, over 67% of sales are lost because of basket abandonment. In many cases shopping cart abandonment is often due to lack of information on the part of the customer. A customer may have added an item to their basket but aren't sure on the shipping costs, when they will receive it by or if it is the right product for them...so without any sign of easy help from your customer service representatives, they just abandon.
How can live chat prevent basket abandonment? If a customer has left the checkout process or is spending an unusually long time on one of your check-out pages (a good few seconds longer than the average customer) then they might be lacking some crucial information or the incentive to buy!
Automatically triggering an invite for your customer to chat with one of your live chat agents, with a simple "Hey there, is there anything that I can help with?" immediately stretches out a helping hand to the customer to prevent them from simply abandoning. The customer will engage with you and tell you what problem they have or why they are reluctant to buy and your live chat agent can answer their questions and/or give them a little encouragement to complete the purchase.
Greet Returning Visitors Personally
The experience which your customers receive whilst shopping on your site is crucial to your business' success. And that doesn't just come down to how easy your site is to navigate or if you stock the products which the customer needs, it also comes down to offering a warm and friendly service to all of your customers through your one-to-one interactions with them.
And many businesses are now starting to replicate this personalisation online as it gives the customer a friendlier experience and creates a loyal relationship.
Channel 4, not an eCommerce site of course, but it is a prime example of a company making an online experience more personal - greeting me by name.
You can set-up your live chat software to check if a store visitor has shopped with you before and then proactively give them a warm welcome back on your behalf. Maybe even ask how much they enjoyed their previous purchase. Proactive live chat can help to build a friendly relationship with individuals and start a meaningful conversation with them too.
Cross-sell With Proactive Live Chat
Opposed to engaging with just 2% of site traffic (what you'd expect from reactive live chat alone), LiveChat’s recent study showed an average engagement rate of 7.28% with proactive live chat. With the highly targeted strategies which we use, we get engagement rates of up to (and sometimes even above) 10%.
Proactive live chat doesn't just allow for more conversations with your customers and goes further than simply reducing cart abandonment. Proactive invites to chat can also be used to increase basket value through upselling and cross-selling of products. Once a customer has added an item to their basket it's possible to automatically engage them with live chat and offer up potential complimentary products or make sure the customer is aware of offers such as a 3-for-2 deal.
A proactive and personalised product recommendation encourages the customer to add more items to their basket whilst they are in the buying mood. Live chat agents can easily reinforce the product recommendation through chat if the customer is unsure that this recommendation is right for them and worth the extra expenditure.
Live chat (and proactive live chat in particular) can greatly strengthen your online performance in terms of both increasing conversion rates and creating a better experience for customers. If your proactive live chat strategy isn't increasing engagement with customers on your site or not improving your overall performance, perhaps you should consider trying some of the methods above or getting in touch with us for a helping hand (try the live chat tab at the bottom right of your screen for quick access to a live chat agent).
Interested in finding out how much money you could make using live chat? Use our free live chat ROI calculator to discover what The Chat Shop's live chat agents could deliver for you.