As the demand for quick yet personalized customer service grows, chat has become an ideal channel for effective communication. eConsultancy reports that 79% of customers prefer live chat for its immediacy, while Roos IT cites that 63% of customers claim they are more likely to return to a website that offers live chat over one that does not. With the enduring popularity of live chat and the explosive growth of messaging apps in customer service, chat in its various forms holds the key to the timely and personalized experiences customers desire. Here are five ways chat is essential to driving great customer experiences.
One of the greatest benefits of chat is that it saves customers time. According to Zopim, most customer service issues are resolved in a mere 42 seconds on a live chat channel, with 42% of customers citing that not being placed on hold is a main reason why they prefer the channel. Similarly, with the recent wave of conversational commerce, many brands are communicating directly with customers through messaging apps, offering them quick solutions and in-depth assistance powered by humans and chat bots alike.
While customers may wish to save time, a quality experience still matters. Indeed, the human touch is still deeply valued in customer service, making chat an essential channel for delivering personalized experiences. The friendly and conversational nature of chat enables agents to engage in meaningful dialogues with customers while giving brands a human touch. For customers who have highly specific or sensitive questions, chat is especially suited to their needs as complex cases are often more easily handled in real time on a private channel, as opposed to channels such as email or social media (which tend to move more slowly or lack privacy). Through traditional text chat, video chat, and messaging apps, brands may guide customers through the research and purchase process from start to finish, ensuring a seamless and personalized experience tailored to each customer’s needs.
Most people find chat very easy to use, which explains its great popularity for daily communications. Since people know how to use the channel intuitively, it therefore becomes an excellent channel for customer service that people can feel comfortable using. Brands should therefore optimize their chat channels by staffing them properly, training agents in their soft skills, and providing rich multimedia content such as photos, videos, and maps within their chats to better assist customers.
Many contact centers note that agents are far more productive when using chat, as they are able to multitask. Agents may have several chat windows open at once and easily follow customer communications without losing their place in the conversation. This translates to lower costs for the contact center and increased agent confidence as their efficiency improves.
As more and more customers turn to service on the go, chat is essential to giving them a seamless experience. Smartphone use continues to rise steadily, and customers continue to research products and make purchases on the go and often in-store. Indeed, a Forrester report found that 44% of customers claim having live chat assistance in the middle of a purchase is one of the most important features a site could offer. Being accessible to mobile customers through messaging or click-to-chat features in a brand app are therefore critical to driving sales and providing seamless customer experiences. Chat is a practical, efficient, and highly personalized channel for communication that can boost sales, deliver effortless experiences, and drive customer satisfaction.
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