3 Reasons Why You Need Live Chat

Cyber Monday 2017 reached several milestones. Online transactions reached a record $6.59 billion, a 16.8 percent increase from a year ago, while for the first time, mobile sales reached $2 billion over a 24-hour period. Consumers are obviously shopping online, where they find convenience as well as deals, but many also expect a personal touch.

According to Forrester Research 44 percent of online consumers say that having questions answered by a live person while in the middle of an online purchase is one of the most important features a Web site can offer. In another report from Zendesk, 92 percent of customers reported they felt satisfied when they used live chat, compared to other communication options like voice (88 percent), email (85 percent), web form (85 percent), and social media (Facebook 84 percent, Twitter 77 percent).

When consumers use chat, they report higher levels of satisfaction. According to the eDigital Customer Service Benchmark, live chat had the highest customer satisfaction levels at 73 percent, compared to email support at 61 percent, and only 44 percent for traditional phone support.

If improved customer satisfaction isn’t enough, live chat can also help resolve problems faster, expand your market reach, discover customer pain points. Here are the top three benefits of utilizing a live chat solution:

Reduced Expenses

By lowering average interaction costs, live chat reduces overall contact center costs, and because agents can handle multiple chats simultaneously, it helps them be more productive. In fact, with proper training, most live chat agents can handle an average of three or more chats at once, while also helping to drastically decrease the phone wait queue

Live chat doesn’t cost much more than a quality email provider and is a lot cheaper than phone support. In fact, Forrester research has shown that live chat customer service is 17-30% cheaper than a phone call.

Increased Sales

Much research has gone into whether chat can actually increase sales, and the results are clear. According to the American Marketing Association, live chat can increase conversions by at least 20 percent. If a customer has a question or needs help while making a purchase online, live chat provides instant access to one of your brand ambassadors who can immediately assist in walking them through their purchase. An ATG Global Consumer Trend report found that 62 percent of respondents were more likely to purchase from a site with live chat again, while 38 percent of respondents said they had made their purchase due to the chat session itself.

Chat can also provide opportunities for upselling products. When customers engage with an agent who understands their needs, they are likely to trust – and act upon – the agent’s recommendations.

Competitive Advantage

In the last five years, the number of U.S. online shoppers who use live chat has increased from 38 percent to 58 percent, according to Forrester research.  What’s more, chat is often the channel of choice for Millennials, who prefer typing to talking. That said, not many companies have adopted live chat, which means that simply by offering this functionality, you can distinguish yourself from competitors. Plus, because chat provides more opportunities to engage your customers proactively, you can engage them before your competition does.

Conclusion

Reduced expenses, increased sales and a competitive advantage are three great reasons to invest in live chat, but perhaps the best reason is the convenience it offers your customer, who appreciate the fact the wait times are often much less than through a phone call. Plus, customers can multi-task while waiting. According to Econsultancy, 51 percent of customers prefer live chat for multitasking purposes, while another 21 percent preferring live chat because it allows them to shop while they work. To learn more about how live chat can help your business increase customer experience while decreasing overall contact center costs, contact ASK today.