How to build an eCommerce strategy with Live Chat

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The best retailers use Live Chat tools to inform and engage online shoppers. This post will show you how to use it on eCommerce and give examples of successful use cases.

Have you ever thought about what defines conversion on eCommerce? Most online retailers believe that the checkout process defines sales. However, many variables lead the customer to the purchase, so the conversion process involves much more than the checkout page.

Build an eCommerce strategy with Live Chat

In a messy and pulverized eCommerce market, where online brands are often competing for customers’ attention, it can be a struggle to lead users from research to purchase.

An excellent strategy to maximize sales and engagement could be through Live Chat. Look at the most successful online services – from marketplaces like Amazon to digital retailers. You’ll see that all of them have a Live Chat window in their webpages and applications, where they offer the possibility to talk to customer support or sales agents.

Beyond just a convenient button, Live Chat serves as an essential touchpoint with the customer across the decision-making process and after the purchase. It’s as if brands are transposing the classic tagline “How can I help you?”, the cliché of physical retail, to digital spaces (but in an organic, non-intrusive way). 

In the age of immediacy, digital marketers and salespeople need tools that help them quickly respond to customers and solve problems more dynamically. In that sense, Live Chat can be a great option for companies who want to professionalize their eCommerce operations.

In this post, we will explore:

  • The concept of Live Chat
  • Examples and use cases of Live Chat in eCommerce
  • Specific benefits of Live Chat for eCommerce
  • Using Live Chat beyond Customer Support

What is Live Chat?

Live Chat is a tool that allows customers to comment and interact via messages directly on a company’s website, usually while browsing products and viewing content. The Live Chat is generally presented as a window in the page’s corner or as a pop-up button. It can sometimes be hidden in the customer support section.

Live Chat makes communication between brands and their customers much quicker and organic as it emulates messaging platforms. That is crucial for brands that want to build more personal connections with clients. 

Also, Live Chat allows users to speak directly with companies, without having to reach them by email or phone, for instance.

One of the main benefits of Live Chat is that it allows multiple interactions in a single web interface, which is vital in the age of digital multitasking. According to a study from E-Consultancy, 51% of customers prefer Live Chat to other channels precisely because it allows them to multitask. 

Sales and customer success teams typically use live Chat to provide customers with support and personalized answers in real-time. It can be used by companies in different sectors, from marketplaces, online retailers, entertainment, and media companies. What varies is the person behind the live Chat.

If you run a media company, you might have editors commentating live events and sales reps behind the Chat offering subscription services. Now, if you run a fashion eCommerce, for example, you might have a customer support professional offering to help with product and shipping information, and so on.

Why using Live Chat in eCommerce

When it comes to the experience in eCommerce websites or marketplaces, customers want more than great products and a neat catalog curation. Interactivity has become a key element of shopping, and customers want the chance to have their problems and doubts solved all at once if they can. 

That’s where Live Chat comes to play. It can boost your eCommerce strategy, improve customer experience (CX), and give your teams more instruments to convert customers and gather business insights.

Let’s explore a few benefits of Live Chat for eCommerce and how it can enrich Customer Experience.

Fast customer support

Online retailers know that the longer they take to answer a customer, the less likely they are to convert and stay loyal to the brand. The truth is nobody likes waiting for replies through email, SMS, and other support channels.  

Because Live Chat is instantaneous, it’s a lot more attractive as a customer support tool. A recent research suggests that it takes only 42 seconds for a live chat support staff to solve a customer query, which makes the customer experience (CX) much better. 

Human touch

In the age of automation and chatbots, a human approach to customer experience might actually give you extra points in the relationship with customers. Even though automated emails and chatbots can be a blessing for optimizing customer support, studies show that users want to interact with humans whenever possible.

The 2019 CGS Customer Service Chatbots & Channels Survey found out that 86% of American customers prefer to talk to humans over chatbots. With Live Chat, you can give customers personalized, warm assistance in an easy, user-friendly way. Besides, much like at physical stores, consumers are more likely to buy when they are treated well.


Unlike other communication channels, Live Chat shows customers that the brand is available to help without disturbing customers’ attention. This non-intrusive approach is crucial for a customer-centric strategy and shows respect for customers’ time, which might help them reach a purchase decision.

Integrated shopping experience

If your company sells products online, you know how complex communication with customers might be. Let’s say a customer just checked out of your website and realized he registered an old shipping address. 

Traditionally, they would have to leave the website and reach out to the right customer support email address or phone to solve the problem, something that could take a couple of days to resolve.

Live Chat, however, can remove this type of friction by integrating the communication cycle in real-time, which is smarter and more effective than executing communication through different channels. 

Besides, E-consultancy shows that 29% of customers want to be in control of the conversation with brands, and Live Chat gives them that. 

Improve Conversion rates

While offering customers rapid solutions to their queries, Live Chat can speed up the decision-making process and improve conversion rates. A study by Emarketer found that more than 60% of consumers would return to a website that offers Live Chat, and more than 79% of consumers feel that having quick answers impacts their buying decisions.

Make personalized offers

While Live Chat is great for solving transactional problems in eCommerce (related to payment and orders, for instance), it can also be a great channel for offering product recommendations and special discounts. A study by ATG Global Consumer Trend found, for instance, that more than 90% of customers think Live Chat was helpful for them while shopping online.

By offering customers personalized recommendations or coupons, brands can use Live Chat to get them out of “research-mode” and convert them into actual buyers. Ecommerce players can also use it to upsell frequent customers. 

Optimize customer support costs

Live Chat represents a cheaper and effective way to communicate with customers from an operations standpoint if compared to call centers. With Live Chat, you don’t have to put your customers on hold, and a few representatives can talk to multiple customers at a time. 

Increase Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty

Every marketer’s goal is not just to convert customers, but to make them satisfied and loyal to your brand, so they always come back. Ultimately, customer satisfaction is related to customer convenience. 

An eDigital Research survey found that 73% of customers who used live chat support for online shopping were highly satisfied and willing to come back for future shopping. Another study by J. D. Power discovered that overall customer satisfaction was higher when customers used the Live Chat window than in other channels. 

Examples of Live Chat in eCommerce and digital platforms

If you look at the digital landscape, you will see that many highly regarded brands have used Live Chat to enhance their websites. 

Still having trouble visualizing how Live Chat can be incorporated into eCommerce? Let’s see how successful digital platforms and retailers are using it. 


One of the global references when it comes to marketplace and eCommerce experience is Amazon. They offer Live Chat options that allow users to chat with customer support specialists about account details, orders, and shipping processes. 

The customer can choose the topic he wants to chat about (memberships and subscriptions, ordering and shopping preferences, Login & Security, etc.) before being redirected to a specialized support agent. 


Can you imagine how many customer queries PlayStation, from Sony, receives in its customer support channels everyday? Probably loads of them. In order to make communication with game players easier, the company has Live Chat rooms linked to its webpage, whereby customers can chat with support agents about things like account access, game purchases, and charge refunds. 


Among the companies that offer great user experience is also Apple, which has a real-time customer support team on Live Chat. Through the chat, customers can arrange a chat with an Apple expert who specializes in their exact question. Everything happens within Apple’s website, so the customer doesn’t have to worry about sending and waiting for emails and phone calls. 

Apple live chat support is a project which was developed collaboratively with Arena, unifying a great live video solution with a powerful live chat tool. Even though some features are currently being developed, the results are already used by more than 2,600 clients around the world, and we’re still counting. Shoply used Arena Live Chat to develop a live video shopping solution that enhances customer experience by enabling the best sales and engagement tools. leverages Live Chat features to enhance Customer Experience

How to derive even more value from Live Chat in eCommerce

So you have learned that Live Chat has many benefits for your eCommerce operation. However, in order to effectively sustain its value, you have to manage it wisely. Here are a few tips to take advantage of Live Chat beyond customer support.

1) Share customer feedback with marketing teams

Insights from Live Chat can be useful for other departments, not just customer support and sales. Online stores can share customer feedback with marketing teams as well, just so they can make changes in their strategies according to what’s best for your audience. 

2) Integrate Live Chat leads to your CRM and Customer Data Platform (CDP)

Live Chat tools can also provide information to Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems and be integrated into Customer Data Platforms (CDPs).

You could choose to add CRM contact information to your Live Chat tool, integrating valuable customer information that can be used by support and sales professionals during sessions with customers. 

By having all customer information available, you can reduce friction and improve conversions. After all, your team should focus on answering your users’ needs, without spending too much time searching for customer information.

A CDP, on the other hand, can use Live Chat information to determine customer profiles, products bought by single customers, and the value generated by chat conversations. It can also integrate Chat information to data generated by other channels and customer platforms.  

That way, your teams can follow up with the created leads, having access to easy conversion reports and reducing the friction between different data platforms.

3) Understand where users come from

One of the challenges for eCommerce players is to understand how their marketing efforts connect to online conversions in a granular and accurate way.  Talking about Live Chat, how can they track what led to a conversion in the Chat?

Some Live Chat tools allow you to connect the dots between chat sessions and the marketing sources that led the customer to the chat – whether it was a campaign, a keyword, or landing page.  You could integrate your Live Chat to Google Analytics for instance, and see a bigger picture of chat conversions and Adword campaigns that led customers to chat sessions. 

Such data is important to determine if your marketing channels are actually bringing people to your page – and how they are connected to your Live Chat. That allows companies to optimize campaigns more accurately according to the insights.

Want to try Live Chat on your eCommerce?

If your company still hasn’t adopted Live Chat support, maybe it’s about time to change that!

Not sure where to start? Arena has one of the most robust Live Chat tools in the market, and the best part is that you can try it for free! Access our free trial and get the best out of the Arena Live Chat.

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