Customers and prospects have a number of ways to reach your team with sales and support questions, but none are as effective and immediate as live chat. Live chat can be used as a customer success tool through strategic outreach and engagement or as a customer support tool by providing a live channel for customers to connect with support teams.
Over the past 4 years live chat usage has grown by 400% and more and more customers expect businesses to have it. The United States is leading the pack with close to 70% of the population that makes purchases online wanting the business they buy from to have live chat.
From discovery to support, businesses are crafting well-thought-out customer journeys around live chat that begin when a user first visits your site. Customers are aware of this trend, and their expectations are pushing businesses to go the extra mile with every interaction.
When a customer or prospect looks for information on your website and can’t find it, they expect to be able to get in touch and receive an answer within a few minutes. Buyers today do not want to be making calls only to be queued for 10 minutes before anyone bothers asking what the problem is. Giving prospects and customers the ability to connect with your business and have live conversations with various departments and teams displays commitment and an earnest desire to help. It is this availability and readiness to provide service that’s helping businesses convert more leads to happy customers.
When used as a customer success tool, live chat can help businesses increase engagement, conversion, revenue and retention. Businesses can connect with customers and prospects in a way that’s informal and personal, allowing teams to develop a better understanding of what a user is looking to achieve.
Know your customer’s journey and identify possible challenges along the way
Imagine a customer just purchased help desk software from your business and needs to now paste a snippet of code to their website. If they aren’t able to do it, customer support will be receiving an email or a live chat message from them. This opens the opportunity for your business to not just handle the issue the customer is coming with, but to be proactive and figure out their use case and the challenges they’re looking to overcome. Some businesses may already identify this as a step that requires guidance and preemptively get in touch. Others may want to know what the customer is looking to achieve and understand their use case before passing on a series of relevant resources. Many, after having gathered some information, may even offer a personalized demo that’s tailored to the customer’s industry use case.
The magic is in the understanding the path or journey a customer will take. Simple messages containing the right information at the right time is all that’s needed to deliver a great customer experience built around live chat.
Be proactive and available. Not invasive and pushy
Customers and prospects typically use live chat to confirm product features and functionality and to get help with pricing and support. However, live chat also provides customer success teams with the chance to engage website visitors and SaaS customers through messages that are relevant to the actions they’ve taken and what they’re trying to achieve.
A great way to strike up conversations with prospects visiting your site is to send helpful messages that are triggered based on engagement rules. Such messages can be triggered if a visitor comes through a defined URL to the products page, visits the support portal or spends some time on the pricing page. Based on these conditions messages can be sent suggesting best sellers, maintenance services, asking if a quote is required or if they’d like a live product demonstration.
This allows companies to craft tailored live chat messages to deliver to users throughout their journey. You can continue proactive engagement through live chat by sending over tips and tricks to save time and maximize the value your product can deliver.
Effective engagement through live chat can help lower ticket volume and create a better more open and understanding relationship with your customers and prospects. The commitment to better the customer’s experience with your product will be appreciated and will help with retention and customer referrals.
Customer value has a direct correlation with customer success and the more value you create for your customers, the more customer success you will accomplish.
A great customer experience comes with great responsibility. It requires consistency, a sense of urgency and accuracy. And it’s like Karma; the more you give, the more you receive.
To read more about customer success, you can also refer to our previous blog post: Where Customer Support and Customer Success Goals Overlap