01 July 2013
Customer Service Benefits of Website Chat Software
In this increasingly online world, customer service expectations are changing. Long wait times in phone queues and extended periods before an email response is received are no longer acceptable.
Using website chat software allows visitors to instantly communicate with businesses and have their customer service enquiries answered in real time. Aside from the instant method of contact, there are also various other benefits of using live chat to answer enquiries that make it a more cost effective and productive channel compared to email and phone.
Live chat operators have the ability to partake in multiple chat sessions simultaneously. This makes the channel immediately more productive compared to handling one phone call or email enquiry at a time. The number of concurrent chats that can be handled is dependant on various factors such as the agent’s typing ability, the complexity of the answers being given, and the questions being asked by the visitor. Increased operator productivity can be achieved with the addition of pre-defined replies. Storing replies to commonly asked questions allows answers to be communicated to the visitor instantaneously. They also ensure consistent, accurate information is provided every time.
The written text based aspect of live chat prevents miscommunication errors that can occur over a telephone conversation. It removes the difficulties around poor quality telephone lines, or tricky to understand customers. Technical information on products and services is much easier to convey during live chat. Operators can type long, clear steps for visitors to follow at their own speed. The chat session can even remain open without inconveniencing the operator, whilst visitors move away from the computer screen to carry out instructions. There’s no need to make notes during a chat, as the entire transcript can be emailed to visitors after the session has ended.
Speed of Response and Satisfaction
Businesses who use live chat to handle customer service and support enquiries report a high level of customer satisfaction. Due to the instant nature of the technology, questions or issues can often be resolved in one or two responses; with the current average chat duration around 3 minutes. Although longer chats do occur, it’s good practice to escalate long complicated enquiries to phone conversations.
Contacting a business via online chat software does not incur costs in the same way it does with a telephone enquiry. Premium rate phone numbers can be particularly expensive, especially if customers are left waiting in a queue. Live chat cuts both the cost and the waiting time, making it a very attractive option from a customer’s perspective.
More Than Just Live Chat
Another huge benefit that Online Chat software holds over telephone and email is the ability to use interactive tools such as co-browse and the automatic redirection of web pages. When handling a customer service enquiry, agents can start a co-browse session to see exactly what their visitor is viewing, and help walk them through completing forms or other online requirements. Operators can also direct visitors towards information and web pages, by automatically redirecting their browser, ensuring they reach the correct page.
For more information on handling support enquiries over live chat, why not request our white paper here. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter to get all our live chat related news first!