Live chat options are becoming a common feature of e-commerce websites. On the whole people are becoming more used to the idea of using live chat given their exposure to chat on mobile and social media such as Facebook.
Should you try this form of communication? If it seems a good fit for both you and your visitors give it a go and see how it performs.
The most important consideration is ensuring you are able to provide this level of support. If you are available in front of a computer all day then it is an ideal option. Note that you can also chat via your mobile when away from your desk.
You will want to make sure that the visitors you spend your time engaging with are genuine prospective customers. Some live chat options give you the ability to identify certain aspects of your visitor such as their location or referral source and this will make it easier to engage with qualified customers.
Try to craft you welcome message so that it engages visitors and encourages them to chat. Rather than “Would you like to chat?” try “Hi! Do you have any questions about (product) that I can help with?”
- Great for dealing with pre-sales questions. Quickly answer buying questions and overcome buyer reluctance so the customer can make their transaction.
- Live chat offers immediate contact with your customers while also allowing you some time to ‘find the answer’.
- You can offer incentives and extras via live chat such as free shipping or discounts.
- Text avoids confusion and misunderstanding that might arise during calls.
- You can instil trust and build rapport and show that a ‘real human being’ is involved in the business.
- You can gain insights into your products and how they are marketed.
- Some customers may resent chat, especially if it is overly obtrusive.
- Non tech-savvy customers may be frightened off if you initiate a chat.
- You may get prank chats.
Selected live chat platforms
All the following are paid services and offer WordPress integration via a plugin