Live Chat is a powerful tool to make your brand more competitive in the era of convenience. Find out why!
Live chat once used to be something optional for companies’ websites. It was just an additional channel to email and phone support. But things have changed in the last few years and Live Chat has become the standard channel for Customer Care and Sales strategies.
Customer-centric brands know that customers are increasingly demanding due to the mobile culture, which compels them to adapt their customer service channels to meet customers’ expectations.
Adding Live Chat to your website can dramatically improve the customer experience, no matter the industry your company is in.
A 2018 survey from Bold 360 found out that 71% of respondents believe that Live Chat will surpass traditional customer service communication channels by 2021.
But what makes Live Chat so powerful? Well, it essentially makes interactions much better for the final customer and customer support teams.
After all, these days, people are hesitant to pick up the phone or send emails asking for support while knowing they’ll face lengthy holds and long response times. On the other hand, traditional channels can make support teams feel pressured and overwhelmed with demands that pile up and take too long to resolve.
The result? Both your customers and your support team might end up frustrated, ultimately damaging your business operations and reputation. And you don’t want to lose conversions and customer loyalty because of a bad support experience.
Let’s explore the advantages of adding Live Chat to your website.
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What is Live Chat?
Live Chat is a window that allows customers to chat instantly with a company’s sales, support agent, or chatbot directly on their website. The Live Chat can be shown in the support section or as a pop-up window that appears while the customer is browsing.
Live Chat can be reactive, serving as a tool to answer questions only when requested by customers, or it can be proactive, allowing brands to start the conversation and guide the customer’s experience.
Live Chat makes communication between brands and their customers much more natural as it simulates messaging platforms. Some Live Chat tools might even be integrated into messaging apps that customers use daily, like Facebook Messenger, What’ sApp, etc.
One of the best things about Live Chat is that it allows customers and support agents to multitask. Customers can keep browsing products and the website while talking to the agent, while agents can handle multiple customers at a time without getting stuck in phone calls, for instance.
According to a study from E-Consultancy, 51% of customers prefer Live Chat to other channels exactly because it allows them to multitask.
Live Chat can be used by companies in different sectors, from marketplaces, online retailers, entertainment, and media companies.
There will be a real agent behind the Chat most of the time, while some companies are already testing fully automated bots or hybrid systems, which mix both formats.
The advantages of Live Chat for Business
There are many benefits of adding Live Chat to your website, from a customer’s perspective and a business efficiency point of view.
Here is a list of advantages of Live Chat:
1 – Convenient Customer Support
When it comes to high-quality customer service, accessibility and timing are key factors to offer a great customer experience. Combine these two elements and you’ll have convenience, which is one of the main drivers of the digital economy.
Users have become used to having access to content, products, and services with only a few clicks. That logic also applies to how customers solve problems and ask for help, so why would customer support be any different?
Adding a Live Chat to your website makes support requests very intuitive and convenient for customers. They don’t have to send and follow up on lengthy emails or stay on hold in phone calls, instead can easily get all their requests solved in a single chat session.
2 – Better Customer Experience
Maybe a decade ago your brand could get along well without Live Chat, but that is no longer the case. According to research from Forrester, 41% of customers expect Live Chat on companies’ websites. For customers that visit websites on a mobile device, this number is as high as 50%.
Live chat has become the leading digital contact channel, as 46% of customers prefer Live Chat compared to just 29% for email, and 16% for social media.
3 – Reduce customers’ waiting time
According to a study by Zendesk, 66% of customers expect immediate responses or resolution in Customer Support, and more traditional support channels obviously cannot live up to those expectations.
To get an idea, the average response time for emails is 12 hours, according to a study from Super Office, while it’s 10 hours for social media. Imagine making anxious customers wait that long! With Live Chat, users can get answers to their questions in two minutes, says the same study.
Remember time is the most valuable asset for people nowadays, so if your brand wants to be helpful, it shouldn’t make customers wait for too long.
Actually, another research from Zendesk shows that the most popular pain point experienced with support teams is to be placed on hold for too long: about 42% of the respondents described it as frustrating.
4 – Increase Customer Service Efficiency
If your goal is to increase work efficiency in Customer Service, Live Chat is a great option for your company. While presenting a convenient communication channel on your own website, it allows support agents to handle multiple cases at a time and solve them right away, increasing productivity.
Live Chat also brings easier transitions between cases. As one chat ends, another pops up, and the agent doesn’t have to pick up a phone or dial a number, for example. In addition, Live Chat allows you to rout customers to the right agents and departments according to the requests they tell at the beginning of the chat session.
You could have standard automatic answers to find out customers’ doubts, and then redirect them to the right agent that will handle the request.
As a result, Live Chat can boost important Customer Service KPIs such as first response time (FRT), average queue time, number of chats answered, Average Resolution Time (ART), etc.
5 – More Cost-Effective
By increasing the support team’s potential to take on more support cases, your business can optimize costs with Customer Care, hiring fewer agents, and spending much less time and money with phone calls and emails.
Imagine the difference it can make during busier times, like Black Friday or special dates, when usually companies have to hire many more agents.
Live chat also gives you the possibility of implementing chatbots to automate part of the job and resolve less-complicated requests.
No matter your company’s approach towards customer service, if it’s totally human, hybrid, or automatized, you’ll certainly have a more cost-effective operation with Live Chat.
6 – Drive more revenue from qualified customers
Companies are realizing that Live Chat has the potential to really help them grow their businesses by increasing lead conversion rates. While many use Live Chat only for Customer Support, an interesting option is to use it proactively to drive engagement on your website.
You can use Live Chat to suggest personalized content and products to customers while they browse, increasing the time spent on your website and even your revenue. After all, proactive Live Chat is all about offering targeted relevant messages to trigger qualified customers who are ready to buy or engage with your brand.
A study shows that customers who spend between $250 and $500 a month online are the most likely to be influenced by the availability of a website with Live Chat. Around 63% of those big-spend consumers are more likely to buy from companies that offer Live Chat support.
7 – Increase customer loyalty
Try to think like the customer: if a company has a personalized approach towards your problems and treats you as a unique individual, even at a general channel such as a website, you’re likely to come back to see what they’ve got for you, right?
This is not just an impression and Live Chat has actually proven to drive more customer loyalty. A study by Emarketer discovered that 63% of customers were more likely to return to a website that offers Live Chat.
8 – Improve Customer Satisfaction Rates
An immediatist culture requires quick and efficient answers, and that’s what makes customers satisfied. By incorporating Live Chat into your website, you will likely increase overall customer satisfaction rates.
According to LiveChat’s 2019 Customer Service Report, the percentage of satisfied Live Chat users is currently at 82% based on the data from over 25,000 websites with Live Chat support.
Comm100 discovered that the same percentage of customers were satisfied with their Live Chat experience, compared to just 61% of email users and a worrying 44% of phone users.
9 – Increase average order value
Live Chat can help you increase sales with proactive communication, but it can also help you increase the value of a sale, too!
Many companies have used Live Chat to talk to their customers while they browse for content and products. In that process, you can recommend similar products and services and end up cross-selling and upselling customers, increasing the average order value. Imagine increasing order value with just a simple chat window!
Let’s say you’re a publisher and a reader is looking to sign up for a basic subscription. A chat agent can send a message through the Live Chat recommending a more sophisticated subscription and maybe offering exclusive content and discounts.
That’s just an example, but it shows how you can take advantage of Live Chat in upselling and cross-selling strategies.
10 – Be more competitive in your industry
If you want your company to stand out in its segment, especially if you are in a competitive business, then Live Chat can also help you with that.
Despite being already popular, Live Chat is expected to continue to grow by as much as 87% in the next 12-18 months. In some industries, chat growth has increased by as much as 150% in the last couple of years, according to The Live Chat Benchmark Report.
When we match customers’ expectations to the Live Chat growth perspective, it gets clear it’s no longer an option not to have Live Chat on a website.
But relax, it’s not like Live Chat is a saturated tool yet. In fact, a Live Chat study made by Super Office with 1,000 websites found that only 9% of them use Live Chat to provide real-time support to their customers.
That means there’s a lot of room to grow with Live Chat. You have the unique opportunity to bring it to your company and become a benchmark in your industry.
11- Better understanding your customers
Last but not least, Live Chat is a powerful tool to get to know your customers better. What kind of approach works best for them? What are their main pain points with your company and your products? What types of customers need more help or are more prone to become loyal?
With Live Chat, you can get valuable insights on customers both in quantitative and behavioral terms. A Zoho study found that 43% of businesses offering Live Chat were able to better understand their customers after just one year of using it.
Start using Live Chat now
Live Chat adoption rates continue to grow across many industries. If you want to be ahead of your competitors, consider implementing Live Chat on your website as soon as possible.
By having Live Chat embedded in your website, you could be:
- Boosting sales and revenue
- Offering faster customer support
- Leveraging customer experience
If your company is not using Live Chat already, now is an excellent time to start!
Arena has one of the most complete Live Chat solutions on the market, and you can try it for free.
Click here to access the free trial of our Live Chat and change your business for good!