How does live chat work? A deep dive into behind the scenes of deploying a live chat solution
I’m guessing you are here because you are considering investing in a live chat tool and you want to understand how live chat works and how it impacts your business. Note that I used the word ‘invest’ and not ‘buy’ because the ROI you get from a live chat tool is so much more than you can imagine. I’ll get to that in a bit.
It’s not an exaggeration if I said conversations shape the world. If we clearly look at the evolution of communication, it gives you an interesting perspective on how conversations have evolved to become more personal, instant, and seamless.
We are living in interesting times where the world is growing smaller and connectivity is growing stronger. When you think about customer-brand communication, so much has changed from waiting on an IVR for ten long minutes just to get to hear the line ‘we’ll get back to you with the solution as soon as possible’ to getting instant responses and solutions to our queries, first hand.
The best part? With tools like live chat, businesses have been able to jump this bandwagon and steer towards communicating with the customers through a channel that is near and dear to them. After all, 75% of the millennials prefer messaging over phone calls. For your brand to survive in this generation, you ought to start having messaging and live chat solutions to communicate and serve your customers better.
Before we get into how live chat works, let’s look at three main reasons why you need live chat for your business.
Faster response rate
66% of adults feel that valuing their time is the most important thing a company can do to provide them with good online customer experience.
With live chat, you can achieve faster response rates. In most cases, companies use live chat for instant responses. Imagine the lifecycle of a customer query before live chat. Customers had to reach out to customer care support through phone if they needed to reach out immediately and email if response time was not their concern. IVRs, SLA, priority, status, were terminologies that were used frequently. Customers never got a proper response for their queries which in turn led to feeding their anger and dissatisfaction.
Not just customer experience, faster response rate also leads to better lead generation. Before live chat, websites used forms for lead generation, which obviously was not the most efficient way to instantly reach out to the leads. And truth to be told, your website visitors are your hottest leads and the time within which you engage with them makes or breaks their decision to invest in your product.
Personalized customer experience
What’s my favorite part about deploying a chat widget on websites? The fact that this is the first step towards achieving personalization. Personalization is gaining so much attention these days. Your customers want to be treated special and also want you to acknowledge their expectations from your product/service. And if we have learnt one thing about people and their expectations, we know that it’s different for different people. A particular feature or product might mean different things for different people. So it’s essential that you pitch to them accordingly and have relevant conversations to pique their interest.
Live chat allows you to do just that. Even before you spend millions of bucks on using AI and ML to personalize and customize your website for different customers, try using a live chat to test the personalization waters. See if it works for your business. Live chat is by far the most non-creepy personalization solution available out there because it provides the right amount of context to the support agents to provide a personalized experience on customer interactions.
You can also trigger messages based on specific conditions like the time spent on a particular page and so on. Imagine this, your customer is contemplating on buying your product but feels that it is a little too expensive for his/her budget. They are spending quite a bit of time on the pricing page. You shoot out a triggered message addressing them saying you are willing to offer a discount just for them. It definitely puts a smile on their face. It makes them happy. It makes them want to be loyal to you.
It’s a lot more than just messaging
Live chat is moving from a simple messaging solution to a more holistic customer engagement platform. Take Freshchat for instance. With our Proximity bundle, you can reach out to your customers wherever they are, the way they want to be reached. The live chat tool has evolved into something that redefines connectivity and accessibility. You can message, share your screen, get into a video call, share GIFs, documents, or if you’re an introvert like me, just use the customized self-service options to look for your answers. You can support your customers even when you’re not around — using bots. Be available on channels that your customers are on — Slack, Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, under the sea, inside a cave, just be there for them like their very own guardian angel.
How does live chat work?
I’m splitting this into two parts — a straightforward understanding of how to install a chat tool and how it works on your site. And the second is a contextual understanding of how live chat works in making your business better.
Let’s start with installing a chat tool on your website. Every chat solution has two views — the agent view and the user view. Once you decide on the chat product that you are interested in purchasing you can check out step by step instructions on how to install the tool and where to place the widget on the product’s website. For example, you can view the installation video of Freshchat here.
Once you install the live chat tool, your customers can view the live chat widget on your website, whereas your agents have access to something called the agent dashboard.
Your agents will have options to view the conversations based on priority. Some live chat tools like Freshchat have options to automatically assign chat conversations to agents based on priority and assignment conditions.
Now that we have an idea of installation and working of live chat, let’s deep dive into how live chat works for your business, or in other words, what value add you can expect out of using a live chat tool.
On clicking the live chat widget, users have access to message channels, which function like an IVR for chat. They can easily reach out to the right group to get their queries addressed.
Live chat tools allow you to integrate with multiple tools to improve the customer experience and make the engagement journey seamless and fluid. Customers can reach out to you wherever and whenever they want to.
Live chat ensures an increase in lead capture as you can deploy a hard working chatbot in place of a form to collect information about the lead in an engaging manner. You can program the bot to engage your leads before the support or sales agent can take over.
Live chat leads to an increase in engagement. You can proactively reach out to more customers, you can keep your users informed of service outages, you can send them offers and discounts in real time. The possibilities are limitless. Live chat also allows you to instantly collect feedback.
Some of the obvious value adds that a live chat tool offers are prompt conversational support and decrease in response time. One of the main reasons behind deploying a live chat solution is to offer instant support and not let your customers hanging. This feature translates into increased efficiency in support and ensures promptness in solving queries. This a straight ticket to win loads of customer love.
Let the journey begin
If you notice, all of these benefits translate into efficiency which in turn leads to customer retention. Every penny spent on purchasing a live chat solution for your business is met with an equal or increased ROI, both quantitatively and qualitatively. A live chat solution will be a life changer for your business if you explore the possibilities of the tool and map them to your requirements. Go ahead, get a live chat tool and stay connected with your customers, now and forever!
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