Many of our eCommerce clients inquire about live chats, for their usefulness and which one to implement. To answer some of those questions, we have put together this short perspective on them.
Live chats are becoming very popular as businesses are exploring new ways of engaging clients. Integrating a live chat to your website allows you to connect with your web visitors directly, answer questions, and help boost sales in real-time.
According to a recent study by the American Marketing Association, live chats help increase web conversions by 20%. In the last five years, the number of U.S. online shoppers who’ve used a live chat to finalize a purchase has increased from 38% to 58% (data: Forrester).
Customers who can jumpstart an anonymous chat are 3 times more likely to buy. On the other hand, 55% of visitors are likely to abandon their online purchase if they can’t find a quick answer to their question (Forrester Consulting study).
Only 9% of websites are equipped with live chat according to TELUS International. Being among the first to implement live support could help distinguish your business from your competitors.
Having the right live chat does two things: it increases customer satisfaction and it shows fast responsiveness, which in turn shows your brand cares. Live chats put customers at ease when purchasing a product they have not experienced in person.
When your visitors can easily contact you with any questions or problems, they will be more confident in your company as a vendor. It’s all about building trust and delivering great customer service.
Through live chat, your company can set up a line of direct personal contact with web visitors, encourage a buying decision, minimize purchasing errors, and answer any questions. This instantly gives you a way to overcome objections and provides your customers with access to immediate support.
Live chats also give you the ability to engage in pro-active communication, targeting leads that are currently on your site. Your live chat can set up opportunistic rules that will trigger proactive chat invitations for upselling or cross-selling; or trigger specific coupons or current discounts for users looking at a particular item.
For the past 10 years, live chats have evolved from simple chat windows to a business tool that can integrate your existing sales processes. When connected to your CRM, certain live chats can send data to your eCommerce platform and can execute different automated campaigns.
Unlike chatbots, live chat happens... live, with a human on both ends of the interface. The quality of the conversation can be as good as having a salesperson in front of your client.
Live chats are also convenient in a way that one team member can multitask and assist several visitors at once, which makes live chats 17-30% cheaper than a phone call. And unlike email support, the answers are fast, so users can quickly find what they are after. According to Econsultancy, 79% of consumers say they prefer live chat functions because they don't have to wait on hold. They prefer to get their questions answered immediately.
In a nutshell, studies have shown time and time again that live chat will help to increase sales.
Does Your Website Need A Live Chat?
It depends on your area of expertise and the products/services you offer. It seems like big brands represented by web agencies focus on building brand awareness through social media; while direct sales firms have prioritized lead generation and conversion.
Regardless, what you need to know is that adding live chat to your website requires a strategic approach. Depending on your business goals, there are several features to consider when deciding on your technical requirements. It is also crucial to allocate the right staff members to monitor your live chat and provide fast and efficient support.
Which Live Chat Should You Choose?
There are many wonderful companies out there. The choice really depends on your business goals and the capabilities you need from your chat software. When in doubt, you’re welcome to contact our team for advice.
Some of our favorite live chat software:
When implementing live chat, it’s important to think of a clear message. Instead of a generic “Need help?”, try to tailor your copywriting to your business goal “Can I help you select a shoe size?”
Also, take into consideration that if a pop-up is getting too many times in the way, your visitor will lose interest fast. To assert your credibility, make chat invitations non-obtrusive and easy to decline. Most consumers prefer to initiate contact, rather than being solicited.
Also, bear in mind that the UX design of your live chat is important. Your web visitors respond differently to particular shapes, colors, and ananimations. With most software, you can easily customize your settings to match your brand colors.
One last advice, your live chat needs to be about helping customers and less about building an email list or filling an online form.