5 Reasons to Use Ecommerce Live Chat

We all know how important customer service is… in fact, we mention it regularly over here on our blog, but there can be times when it’s a little too much. This usually happens outside of the internet in the real world when you walk into a shop (usually of the clothing variety) and the sales assistants all descend on you like a pack of wolves offering their ‘are-you-looking-for-anything-in-particular-or-are-you-just-browsing?’ spiel – and some of them are very persistent.

Disclaimer: Apologies if you work in retail, I know you have to ask every customer this and you’re only doing your job!

For many, this type of customer service verges on annoying, and if you thought you could avoid this by shopping online… think again! Introducing: the live chat. As soon as a site has loaded, you have a virtual version of this helpful helper popping up on your screen to ask you similar questions. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying a live chat isn’t a good idea, because I actually think it is, but I feel it should be tailored to the situation, which fortunately it can be.

Here are 5 reasons why using live chat on your ecommerce site is a great idea:

1. Fast Communication

Many customers don’t like waiting for an email response or being on-hold on the phone, especially if it’s just for a quick question. Therefore, live chats are great because it can provide an instant conversation with a business.

Not only that, but with specific filtering, you can ask the customers a series of questions before connecting their live chat conversation, so that you can ensure that the right person to deal with their query is on the other side. This will provide the fastest and most accurate information for your customers, which will improve their overall shopping experience.

2. Multiple Conversations

Speaking with customers using live chat allows you to have multiple conversations running at once. This is something that you can’t do on the phone, which makes live chat particularly good for small businesses because they don’t necessarily have the resources to have their whole team on the phones dealing with customer queries.

That said, too many conversations at once means that your customer service won’t be as good, as the responses could be too slow or not detailed enough. So, we recommend you choose a maximum number of people to speak with at once (however many you can manage to keep your customer service up), and then set up a wait list for any extra customers.

3. Increased Conversions

Live chat allows customers to communicate with a business throughout every stage of purchase which increases conversions because any issues they may have can be ironed out there and then. This may also increase repeat purchases as a good experience will encourage customers to come back.

The availability of the live chat feature also means that customers can choose when they speak with you, which eliminates the annoyance we described earlier.

4. Personalised Experiences

Tailor the messages you send to different customers by using tools to determine things like how long they’ve been on the site and which pages and products they’ve been browsing. This will create a more personal experience and will make customers feel a lot more valued.

You can read more about ecommerce personalisation in last week's blog post

5. Out-of-Hours Contact

Live chat is not just great for office hours, you can also set your software so that it sends an automated message to someone out-of-hours giving them information or directing them to the correct place. Or if you also use a chat bot, it might actually be able to provide the specific answers they are looking for whilst you are away.