Five Great Ways To Use Live Chat Software

Have you considered using live chat software for value-added benefits that reach beyond just chatting in real time with your website visitors? The benefits of engaging with your website visitors via live chat software is well documented through hundreds of articles on the internet. Some of the most obvious include: 1) Improved Customer Service; 2) Better Sales and Conversion; 3) Customer Service Cost Savings

What most other articles rarely dive into are the other ways to leverage and get the most out of your hosted live chat software by following these not-so-obvious ideas:

    1. Pro-active Chat: Configure your live chat software to prompt visitors to chat with you by popping up automatically
    2. Got Suggestions? Collect suggestions, ideas, and feature requests directly from your clients any time
    3. Report a Bug (and Help Desk): Create a live chat widget specifically to capture bug reports from your customers.  Turn it into a ticket, and see it through to resolution
    4. Eye Catching Discounts: Use your chat buttons to offer a discount anywhere on your website
    5. Contact Form: A simplified way for your customers to reach you on any page, all while you collect emails and build email marketing campaigns

1. Pro-active Chat

Live chat software comes to life with pro-active chat. One of the easiest ways to encourage a customer to chat with you is to automatically pop-up and ask them! Imagine you own a brick and mortar electronics store and your customers walk in and out without anyone approaching them to ask whether they need help, or whether one product was superior to another.¬† It’s obvious your sales would fair better if you approached your customers proactively. Websites are the same thing – if you’re not using pro-active chat, you’re allowing your customers to walk in and out of your store without saying a word to them and your sales will suffer as a result.

Now that you’re sold on pro-active chat, all it typically takes is a few easy configurations: Decide after how many seconds does your website visitor need to be on your web page to initiate the conversation. A shorter frequency could be beneficial in some cases to capture the visitor’s attention quickly. For example, it’s safe to assume if one of your visitors is navigating your help center or FAQ, they likely need some assistance. You can set the frequency to something like 3 seconds and chat with them instead. Or another example of a lower frequency (in seconds) would be an eCommerce check-out process; ensuring your customer has all the information they need to close the deal. In other cases, such as a blog article, you may not need pro-active chat at all, or perhaps after a longer period such as 45 seconds.

Next, decide what your opening question should be: If you setup a live chat widget on your features or pricing page, you can prompt something as simple as “Hello, do you have any questions with our features or pricing that I could help clarify?” If you setup a widget for a shopping cart checkout page, try “Hi there, I’m Zack. If you have any questions about how to check out, I’m here if you need anything.”

One thing to keep in mind with pro-active chat is to ensure not to pester your customers; it’s easy to get carried away and pop-up chat forms from every page. Improving your conversion rate or helping your customers can turn against you if you don’t do it tastefully.

2. Got Suggestions?

No sense in building a feature that nobody wants, right? Use your live chat software to gather suggestions from your clients and help prioritize your backlog of features. It’s amazing how often customers are willing to provide feedback if given the opportunity. A noticeable button calling out your desire to hear from your customers goes a long way in getting real feedback for your product or service. While you’re at it, you collect email addresses and new customers to market to along the way.

3. Report a Bug (and Help Desk)

Another way to leverage your live chat software is to turn it into a bug reporting tool. If you’re rolling out new software or enhancements, create an offline bug-reporting button to help refine your product. You can then follow-up with your customers to provide a status update on the ticket and see it to resolution. The benefits of capturing your clients’ feedback and seeing it to resolution can go a long way in improving not only the quality of your product or service, but customer and brand loyalty.

4. Eye Catching Discounts

Another creative way to leverage your live chat software is to offer a promotion or discount. Customize the text of your chat button especially if you’re selling goods online, as conversion rates (sales) rarely average more than 2%! Catch your customers’ attention with a promotional offer, and then give them a promo code after they start a chat or submit an offline email. It’s a win-win situation!

5. Contact Form

One of the simplest implementations of live chat software is to use it as a “Contact Us” form. Rather than just a single dedicated contact us form on your website, give your customers the opportunity to reach out to you for any reason and on any web page. The contact us form can be a noticeable offline button that reads “Contact Us”, “Email Us”, “We’re Offline – Email Us”, “Need Help? Contact Us”, or anything!

Hosted live chat software is affordable and more than pays for itself when used creatively with some of the strategies noted above. Not only do you improve your customer service, sales, and overhead costs with live chat software, you proactively engage with your customers in multiple different ways to improve your overall brand and online presence.

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