Website chat is rapidly becoming one of the fastest growing channels. A recent study by Forrester found that since 2016 the number of customers that use live chat over the phone and email support has increased by 50% and the number of chats per agent has increased by 85% *. This blog will explore the drivers behind the increase in website chat adoption and 3 keys to optimizing it.
While websites began as a means for customers to find information about a business, the rapid growth of smartphones has evolved into an opportunity to engage – and increasing channel of choice for customer. Here are 5 recent stats by Invespcro**, a customer conversion consulting company, that show just how significant leveraging website to engage with a customer is for driving satisfaction, revenue, and speedy service resolutions.:
- 79% use chat to get their questions answered immediately**
- 73% of customers find live chat to be the most satisfying way of communicating with a business**
- 46% believe chat is the most efficient communication method**
- 42% of customers selected live chat as their preferred method of giving contact** information, higher than any other lead generating method**
- 44% of online customers 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**
If you are not yet using website chat to engage with customers, all data points to the fact that you will need to soon. If you are, here are three things to make sure you optimize the channel:
- Layer on Chatbots – Chatbots and AI have been a hot topic and website chat provides a prime opportunity to leverage these technologies. Unlike voice, website chat does not have the additional complexity of speech recognition, and with the right logic, can provide an efficient and pleasant interaction for the customer. The chatbot’s ability to identify and access customer data will be a pivotal function in driving efficient logic algorithms. Like its older counterpart, the IVR application, chatbot’s efficacy is also limited by its ability to access customer data . In these instances, it is also key to provide a strong link to a live agent
- Close the Cross-Channel Gap – In an instance when a chatbot might not suffice, establishing an immediate link to a live agent is key. This link, like any other channel link, often suffers from a disconnect in experience for the customer. It is critical that an agent is not only connected quickly, but he/she is automatically equipped with the customer’s profile information and previous engagement history – including what happened with a chatbot prior to reaching the agent. When a connection with a live agent occurs, the complexity and expectation of the customers is heightened, and agents must have access to the tools to handle it.
- Continue the Journey – Often times, the customer’s journey after speaking with a live-agent is not complete. Website chat with a live agent also provides the opportunity to expand digital engagement by confirming channel preference, collecting new contact information, and/or facilitating next-step contact over other channels such as Email, SMs, or Voice call.
LiveVox’s comprehensive customer engagement platform provides contact centers with a simplified path to address all three of these key functions.