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Live chats have revolutionized the world of customer service and ecommerce. Instead of waiting on the phone for hours or being transferred and put on hold, customers can now ask a question and get an instant response–all in the comfort of their own homes. Although live chat is generally thought of in the customer service realm, using it to improve the overall user experience is a great way to potentially boost conversions.
While live chats are not a foolproof way to increase your conversion rate, if you employ the proper strategy, you will certainly be on your way. Read on for some great methods to chit chat your way to higher conversions:
What is live chat?
Before getting into the nitty-gritty of how you can use live chat to boost your site’s conversions, you should first understand what live chat is and how it is used. Live chat is a popup discussion window generally used for onsite questions and conversations. Normally, there are two major types of live chats: proactive and reactive.
Reactive chats are chat windows that only open at the user’s request. When the user needs assistance, has a question, or simply needs to talk, they can press a chat button and instantly get in touch with a representative is on the other end. Proactive chats on the other hand, are windows that automatically pop up to inform the user of the option to chat with a representative.
Who does it reach?
Not surprisingly, live chat is appreciated by the vast majority of users. In fact, according to Forrester, 44% of online customers feel that live chat is one of the most critical features of a website. This is especially true for millennials. Since Generation Y is both accustomed to using technology and expect instant results, it is no surprise that this group is the most inclined to engage in live chats.
Furthermore because this generation is rising in influence, it’s important to consider their habits as an indicator of the overall trend.
Do live chat convert better?
While there is no conclusive answer to this question thus far, there are certainly strategies you can employ to increase your chances of boosting conversions.
First of all, you have to understand your user’s needs. On a basic level, you should know whether or not your target audience is one that would appreciate live chat, and if they are, you should also figure out how your users want to be approached through the chat system. Conducting market research is a great way to understand your user’s needs and come up with a solution that is mutually beneficial.
Now that you have established your customer’s immediate needs, you should ensure your chat system stays true to them at all times. When you put a chat system in place, you are essentially communicating to your users that you are there for them. Therefore, the worst thing you could do is leave them waiting for a response. So make sure you have someone ready and willing to answer at all times and never take more than 10 seconds to respond. If this means employing more people to make it happen, so be it.
Don’t forget to make it personal. Saying your own name, having a real picture, and initiating a personalized conversation based on your user’s interests are great strategies for establishing a connection and staying true to your user’s interests.
Lastly, consider polling your users to get their opinion on how to improve your chat system as well as other site features. By making every effort to show you have your user’s interests at heart, you will keep them on your site longer and cultivate a strong, lasting relationship.
Live chat and mobile
We all know people practically live on mobile. As a result, it’s more critical than ever to optimize your site and chat for mobile users. In order to accomplish this, make sure your chat fits on a small screen. After all, nobody has time to continuously scroll and adjust their screen to fit your chat window. If it doesn’t automatically fit, your users will most likely abandon your site. In addition, you should also train your staff to write short, to the point answers. This way, the answers will be easier to read, encouraging people to interact with the chat features.
Believe it or not, live chats are not just for customer service anymore. In recent years, the tool has grown into a means for companies to communicate with users about a range of matters, ultimately helping to develop stronger and more personal relationships. Additionally, another growing trend is for users to chat amongst themselves. This way, a community is cultivated surrounding a brand and people become more loyal to your site. While chat in and of itself does not necessarily increase your user retention, by taking advantage of these useful strategies, your chat is on track to become a conversion boosting machine.