The digital age has brought today’s customers into an era of immediacy. Have a question? Simply ask a question to the AI device in your home or car, it will be happy to look up the answer for you. Just remembered you need to call your mom? No need to stop what you are doing, simply tell your phone to dial mom. Oh, and what about that milk you forgot to pick up on the way home? Many are now able to order milk online and have it delivered within an hour’s time.
This immediacy is one of the reasons that live chat is so very important, and why it is here to stay. In this era of “right now”, customers are losing patience with the dated ways of reaching out to a business for assistance, to place an order or to ask a question. Calls that have too many options for customers to select from are often ended before they ever reach the intended destination. And let’s not even talk about being placed on hold. Today’s customers want action and resolution almost as quickly as a thought pops into their minds.
A 2016 report on the mobile habits of customers found that over half expect to be able to get customer service around the clock. And while staffing a contact center all hours of the day and night is possible, alive chat that is always available on your website can vastly reduce the number of employees who need to try and sound wide awake at 3 am. Through a live chat feature, customers can have questions answered, get assistance with ordering and even get a phone number for further assistance if needed. Not only do customers benefit from 24/7 availability, but more than 90% of customers report that they are satisfied after a live chat interaction. For this “now generation”, convenience is key to customer retention.
Though customer satisfaction rates are key for a successful contact center, the cost of those rates must be constantly evaluated to make sure the benefits are still worth the ongoing effort. Live chat has been found to be very successful at helping a contact center remain effective while cutting costs. This is due, in part, to the fact that one chat agent can successfully help more than one customer at a time. Telephone agents who tried juggling a few customers at a time by putting each on hold between responses would certainly not garner the same customer satisfaction rates.
The fact that chat agents are linked digitally to chat customers is even more beneficial as they are able to send over pdf files or links as needed during the conversation instead of the less cost-effective process of a telephone agent trying to explain to a customer exactly how and where to find the correct information.
Historically, customers who wanted to purchase an item would stroll into a retail location and engage with an employee to find out more about the item. A website without chat today is much like a retail location without helpful employees. In fact, it is almost like a store with one stodgy employee who refuses to leave the cashier stand to offer help. Studies show that between 10 and 50 percent of those who visit a retail website use the chat feature. This interaction is what seems to drive conversions and dramatically improved sales.
With the right chat support software, configured and installed for your specific company, live chat can be a place that also monitors customer pain points in an effort to eliminate them altogether. Chat software from Etech Global has been proven to not only monitor pain points, but increase CSAT rates and lower costs as well.
Take time to make sure the employees in your contact center have the ability to meet the needs of this generation, which often means immediately.