01 July 2014
Using Online Chat Software - Context Before Chat
Whether a customer initiates contact to query a bill, buy a product, or seek advice on an item already purchased, the CRM system lies at the heart of most sales and service departments.
A solid CRM strategy will provide a comprehensive view of the customer by pulling together information from all the points of contact; be it phone, email or live chat.
Whenever a member of your team engages with a customer there should be a CRM record
There are no exceptions to this rule, not even for more technologically innovative engagements like live chat over a mobile device. This ensures that future customer service staff can be provided with the information they need to understand the visitor’s situation.
Every time a member of your team engages with a prospective customer it’s an opportunity to learn more about the customer. If a customer chooses your product or service your agents should be trying to find out why they want it, i.e. their motivation. Your best customer-facing staff members will obtain their customer’s comfort zone in terms of price and establish if there are any cross-selling opportunities. Short term, this information can be used to create a sale but long-term it’s a chance to identify leads and maintain contact through other marketing channels such as e-mail. A properly configured CRM system will use this information to provide a better and more tailored service next time the customer makes contact.
With Click4Assistance online chat software, all chat sessions produce rich customer information which can be seamlessly added to the data within the CRM system. The ease with which chat software for website can integrate with CRM means that team members can submit leads and assign tasks without having to jump from live chat to the CRM software. Not only does this enrich your relationship with repeat customers, it reduces the amount of time spent filling in the information manually.
Providing context to your chat operators is especially important if the product is complicated with a lot of choices
For example, if a previous customer revisits a website to purchase travel insurance, it can be helpful for the operator to see what they selected previously. The great variety of insurance options can be baffling so having an operator at the other end who knows what the customer is familiar with is vital to encourage repeat custom.
Integrating online chat software with your CRM system is also a good way to ensure you provide the best possible training for your operators. Having a text record of successful and unsuccessful cross-selling, customer resolution and support issues is perfect for looking back and identifying your weakest areas. For example, if customers ask to unsubscribe to a service, you can see how many of those request were avoided by tactful operators. Likewise, if a repeat customer suddenly stops purchasing from your site, you can review the last engagement with them to try and understand their behaviour – and train your operators accordingly.
Online chat software is a powerful tool that can bring a wide variety of time-saving functionality to your customer-facing team, but you can get even more out of it by integrating it with your existing CRM system. Your chat dialogues and call-back requests should become part of an ongoing effort to build a stronger relationship with your customers, providing your operator with context before they chat is an important step in achieving this goal.