19 January 2015
Website Chat Software vs Telephone - which customer support do users prefer?
As more websites become chat enabled, it’s worth analysing which is the best or preferred route for customers using websites running online chat software.
Very few websites currently operate online chat software without phone support too but this may become more widespread as the significant cost savings of website chat software over telephone support unravel. Most of the recent data suggests that customers who utilise website chat software as a means of customer support or service online prefer that route to picking up the phone. There are also certain logistical difficulties with regard to interrupting a browser session using a tablet or smartphone to then make a phone call to a support agent. Website chat software doesn’t suffer from any of these tactical or logistical difficulties.
There is also evidence that customers with a smooth online experience i.e. from initial browsing to checkout, are more likely to repurchase from that website.
Online chat software certainly holds that advantage over more traditional support methods – especially the telephone.
Call wait times are a significant problem for phone support. Full telephone support can be extremely expensive if it involves managing a call centre whereas website chat software, especially for smaller businesses or SMEs is much cheaper to implement and to manage. There is also the cost of the call for customers – often via 0845 or 0870 numbers which can prove expensive if stuck in a call queue.
Website Chat Software is not only preferred and much cheaper for customers, it is much more cost efficient for businesses in the online environment. Customer service or support staff can engage in more than one ‘chat’ at a time which means it’s much smarter leading to quicker and more concise engagement times. If a customer support agent is engaged in a number of simultaneous chats, offering help to customers with product enquiries, the time between users browsing information or product prompts can be spent answering queries for other customers. It’s much easier for support staff to multi-task chats online than it at first appears. And, of course, support can only be offered to a single customer at a time via the telephone.
With no expensive call costs customers are at ease and happy to pause and then re-engage with customer support staff either via desktop, mobile smartphone or tablet.
If you’d like to test the viability of website chat software for your company, contact our team today by clicking here