How do you prefer to communicate with businesses when you’re in need of support? If you’re anything like me, and 42% of consumers, you’d likely rather use live chat to avoid any dreaded hold time.
Inc Magazine reported that “51% of customers prefer live chat for multitasking purposes.” We’re all busy and trying to squeeze as much into our days as possible. Sitting on a phone listening to awful hold music is not something anyone wants to do.
But live chat isn’t only about customer service. Many have found unique ways to use live chat. We’ll get to a few ideas on ways you can use live chat later in this post. First, let’s look at ways to use live chat to benefit your organization.
- Boost revenue and sales by guiding your visitors to the sale. 44% of online consumers claim having their questions answered by a live person in their online buying process is highly important. AND, bonus, using live chat can lower the costs involved in running a call center, effectively lifting your bottom line.
- Improve your customers’ experiences and brand loyalty with the added convenience. Meet your digitally savvy consumers’ expectations with live chat, and they’ll be happier with their experiences engaging with your company.
- Maximize conversions and generate more leads by offering assistance and asking for email addresses at the beginning of the chat. ApexChat reports “live chat can increase online leads by an average of 40 percent.”
Unique Ideas for Live Chat
Live chat can be used to bolster your online marketing. Website visitors from email, social media referrals, ads, and organic search can benefit from live chat. It’s a great way to engage your audience and encourage the passive readers to take action. Below are a few innovative ideas.
- Personalized targeting – Based on the pages visited, geo-location, or UTMs, businesses can offer customized promotions. This tutorial shows you how to set up a trigger based on UTMs using Drift.
- Storytelling – Using a face and a name in your messages helps to personalize the interaction and can open opportunities to tell your brand’s story.
- Offering multi-lingual support – Businesses with an international client base can provide customer service in other languages.
- Facebook Page Chat – Chatbots or live chat can happen on Facebook Messenger or a separate tab within the app.
- Proactive support – A visitor landing on a 404 page is an opportunity for a live chat to pop up and help redirect.
Best Practices and Tools for the Ways to Use Live Chat
Customers who take advantage of live chat (73%) for customer service have higher satisfaction levels than those who call in (44%) or use email (61%) support according to Econsultancy. When training your team on how to use live chat or chatbots keep the following best practices in mind:
- Be conversational. Think through how the conversation will go based on your prompts to the website visitor and prepare responses that a human would use.
- Prepare for incidences where a live person will need to be pulled in if using chatbots. A rep can join the chat in real-time, or you can provide additional support via email.
- The speed to respond needs to be fast. The average wait time is 2 minutes and 40 seconds, but this seems a little long. The sooner you can reply, the better!
- Set up an initial automated response even if a live person will be corresponding – something that says “Thanks! We’ll be with you in X minutes.” It will help curb impatience and create a better experience for your customer.
- Ask for feedback after the chat ends. Only 55% of companies do this. The other 45% are missing a significant opportunity to learn how they can improve.
Now that you have a few ideas about what you can do with live chat, here’s a list of a few different platforms you can utilize to get set up.
- MobileMonkey – Build powerful chatbots for Facebook Messenger easy and free with no coding required. Also, they offer a FREE (full featured product) plan.
- Drift – This is what we currently use for our on-site live chat. There’s an option to build playbooks for various scenarios or to keep the communications live.
- Chatfuel – Create free Facebook messenger chatbots without coding.
- Twilio Studio – Set up chatbots to correspond via text messages or on a website.
- HubSpot Messages – Is a new HubSpot feature that uses live chat to qualify conversations and then send the lead to a live chat operator for further development. A great option, especially if you’re already using their platform.
Add Live Chat to Your Website Today!
Live chat has been around since 1973, but in the last year or so it’s grown exponentially in popularity as more companies look for interesting ways to use live chat. Customers are looking for it, and more businesses are starting to offer it. Being innovative with live chat will help your website to stand out. Now is the time to jump in if you haven’t already!