This is our third and final post in a series of posts relating to the benefits of live chat from 3 perspectives. Lead Generation, Increase Conversion and Customer Service.
Many people still believe that live chat can only be utilised as a support tool, if you don't believe us when we say that it can be used for more than that, check out the blog posts on Lead Generation and Increasing Conversion.
This post takes an in-depth look at the benefits of using live chat for online customer service. Benefits of live chat far greater than just using it as an FAQ answering service.
Help when customers need it
One of the key benefits of live chat is the fact that it is there when your customers need it the most. eCommerce is constantly growing with many retailers seeing a shift in the majority of sales occurring online rather than offline.
Customers can sometimes need help in completing a purchase or want to get help from where they made their original purchase. An online visitor may be wanting to complete a purchase but can't until they've confirmed they've got the right product.
Live chat means a customer can shop and get their problems solved painlessly, all in one place. If the visitor can't get a simple question answered quickly on your site, it's likely that they will abandon and try to find the product on a competitor site.
Customers don't want to have to phone or email you, or go in-store should they face a problem. Customers want to be able to jump on your website (they could already be there) and get a problem solved within minutes.
At The Chat Shop we aim to make an initial response within 30 seconds. And then we keep in constant communication as we work to solve the customer's problem.
Live chat means no waiting around on hold, no days of waiting for an email response and no major hassle of a customer going out of their way to visit you in person.
Free and easy to use
For your customers that is. Yes, one of the major benefits of live chat from a consumer perspective and therefore from your customer service/satisfaction perspective is that it is free. No paying for a premium number. Why should consumers pay when they have a problem with your product?
And yes, it's easy to use. Chat can be started with a click and then it's just a case of typing your message. Simple. If your customer can make it to your website, they can operate live chat and get their problems solved.
Guide customers around the site
Because live chat is so simple to use and is easily accessible anywhere on your site, it can be used to help customers find what they are looking for, guide them round your site or even walk them through your check-out process step-by-step.
Live chat can benefit both those who are comfortable with technology and those who aren't. Even the most tech-savvy of customers might have trouble signing up for a special offer or finding those shoes that they really want. According to Econsultancy, 83% of consumers require some degree of customer support while making an online purchase.
Live chat can mean all manner of instructions and links can be sent across to guide a customer. And the customer can leave the live chat transcript open or email it to themselves so that they can read back through instructions at their own discretion.
Discover customer pain points
Live chat can do more than just solve short term problems on a one-to-one basis. Because of live chat being more informal than channels such as email and phone, customers can open up to a representative much more willingly.
You can find out what customers aren't happy with in the long run and therefore use it to improve your overall customer experience. Solving problems and improving your service based on feedback increases customer satisfaction and in turn encourages repeat custom.
If you'd like to find out more about the benefits of live chat in customer service, check out our customer service programme.