Live chat truly is a transformative medium of communication in the eCommerce sphere of things. It contributes not just to customer support, but directly to sales. Studies show live chat contributes 30% to the conversion rate. Additionally live chat increases conversions by 20%.
So why aren’t all the eCommerce websites able to get the same results despite having a running live chat? Reasons could be plenty. From response times, to the nature of products, the conversion rate depends on a lot of factors.
It is not simply the chat application that gives eCommerce the boost in conversion rates. Businesses have to learn to use it right. We explored the data for leading brands and the strategies that they implemented to discover some key factors driving conversions. By running our own tests on these, we have been able to pinpoint exactly what you need to do to get a massive conversion boost through live chat.
Let’s get right into it.
Things to make your live chat more effective
Add a welcome pop up to initiate conversation
A welcome pop up is just a little bubble that typically says “Hey, welcome to our website, we are happy to help and answer any questions!”. It is a live chat pop up that basically warms up a new customer or a recurring customer with a sweet message. It is a super simple technique that goes a long way.
Remember, proactive is the way to go with customer satisfaction. You have to address the customer before they come to you with a query. Just giving them a warm fuzzy feeling about your website. And something that makes them feel attended to, much like it is in any brick and mortar store. A simple hello goes a long way.
Use your own identity to chat, not simply a logo - people want humans!
Now, when you use a chat bubble to interact with a customer, it doesn’t mean that you bag their trust instantly. For all they know, you are an automated bot. It is pretty shady, considering how many shady eCommerce websites are using it. A quick way to fix this is by using your name and a real human picture.
All you need to do is give your chat an identity. Don’t use a generic bubble icon, instead go for a personalized theme. It could be your team or a random person out of your team. You can randomize this and have multiple people and pictures interchangeably. Retain the bubble, just add a name to it. It gives it a more human touch. So instead of a bot, the customer goes, oh well I can talk to this XYZ person, he/she seems nice and they might help me with my query.
Automated answers from frequently asked questions
Live chat is important, and real human behind the scenes is also important. BUT, that doesn’t mean you can’t use automations at all! In fact, it is better that you use automated answers for frequently asked questions. Basic FAQs about shipping, return policy, compliance in some cases, etc. Any question that is pretty common and reasonable for a customer to ask, you can try to automate.
This drastically decreases your response time. And response times have a direct correlation with conversions on eCommerce. Since an automated reply comes instantly, the customer doesn’t have to wait. You could make a case that you have a team of live agents sitting on the beck and call of the customer.
But, the simple fact remains, that reading user questions, and typing out the answers takes some amount of time, and will always be slower than a machine! Also, having a few automated answers to common questions gives live agents a buffer time during peak hours. Making the overall experience smooth keeping the customer engaged.
Get SMS notifications for every live chat query
The way most live agents get notified is via email. They get an email when a customer has a query which then redirects them to a login on the web app. This is extremely clunky and time consuming, especially if the agent or you are away from their desk. Using an SMS notification is remarkably simpler and quicker.
Once a customer wants to connect, the agent receives a text. Which comes with a browser link for instant access. So agents can simply click, and interact with a customer on the go. Without worrying about opening their email, and then logging in. You can also use this as a prime notification channel along with email, so your live agents are always on top when a customer wants to connect with them. Live chat apps like TextChat enable you with this smart feature to help you stay at the top of your customer conversations. Get a free trial today!
Set your active and inactive hours to define expectations
Live chat isn’t exactly a cake walk. Live chat agents need to always have an ear out for new queries popping up. And work endlessly during peak hours, or during a sale. If your live chat agents are stepping away occasionally, instead of waiting for the customer, you can simply set active and inactive hours.
This is basically on display upfront on the chat, so the customer knows exactly when you will be available and when you will be away. During that time, the customer can choose to interact with a bot, or wait to interact with you.
Make sure you are taking note of incoming queries and intent
Following up with the above point, don’t ever just abandon your customer even during inactive hours. Ensure that you are still taking their queries. You don’t want to lose out on a potential customer by making them feel ignored! Give them an option to put in their query, and follow it up with a polite message like “Hi, sorry we are unavailable for chat at the moment, but we will get back to you by [insert active hours]”.
You can also use a contact form, to collect customer details and prioritize replying to them as soon as you are available. In case you are using other customer support channels, like voice or video, ensure the customer knows. Especially, if an agent is available to take a call or video. Give them an option to connect via these mediums.
Again, having a live chat app like TextChat, can help you capture queries and customer intent. This helps you get back to them with a personalized message to help them with their buying journey.
Keep your customers on the same chat window for context
When a customer leaves a query for you when you are away, don’t reply to them via an email. Instead, give them a quick access link to the same chat once you have answered their query. You could send them a notification on the contact details they provide, be it email or a text on their phone number.
Once you do this, also make sure you are available to talk to them after having answered their initial query. Live chat is a great space to interact, sell, cross sell and upsell. So, you don’t want to miss out when an opportunity to do so presents itself. Conversions are easier when the customer is interacting with you on your turf. In simple terms, on your website, on your live chat window. Plus, it makes it easier for them and you to put things in context, since the entire history remains on the chat window.
Use the same flow of chat across platforms
If you are using multiple platforms to offer support via text conversations, ensure you follow the same logic everywhere. Say you use live chat on your website, as well as on your social media. Everything from notifying the customer, and replying should work the same way on both the channels.
Any inconsistencies within your support is off putting for the customer. They expect you to have the same representation throughout. And all these tips are of great help regardless of the platform you are using to interact with your customers. So following a protocol is a win win for all involved.
Brand your chat window with a logo and colors
One thing that comes with popular tools and plugins for live chat is a chat window with the same theme on all websites that use it. This is not attractive in any way shape or form for a new customer. Your chat window should speak about your brand, not about the API developer.
Offer complete, and thorough branding on your chat window. It should practically be a part of your website. From the colours you use, to the font. Keep everything on the chat window inline with your branding. Since many live chat solutions out there don’t offer a great deal of customization, we recommend using our in house easy to customize live chat solution.
There you have it, folks. Simple but powerful ways with which you can boost your conversions via live chat!
Ready to see how powerful live chat can be when it comes to turning customer support into actual sales for your online store?