5 reasons you should be using web chat for customer care

In today’s business environment, your customers expect a frictionless support experience. Although the essential principles of customer service have not changed, customers now demand efficient and immediate support for the products and services they buy. Often, this means that they want channels that are more efficient and flexible than traditional touch points such as phone or email.

Traditionally, customers emailed or phoned to receive support. While the cost of email support is considerably less than phone support, email is not ideal for an interactive two-way dialogue. This can cause a simple service request to take several attempts and back-and-forth email messages to resolve – encouraging continued use of costlier voice calls.

Web chat, one of the newest support channels, combines the speed of service that customers expect from dialing a 1-800 number with the ease and familiarity of digital correspondence via email. Integrating web chat on your website with Skype for Business is the first step on the path to a well-rounded support system that satisfies customers while offering an excellent ROI due to reduced costs. Web chat enables your organization to:

  1. Communicate in real time with customers. The best web-chat tools will track the agent’s presence so that when a customer initiates a chat, they are intelligently routed to an available agent who has the skillset needed to address their inquiry.  Within the dialogue window, customers should see if an agent has read their message or if an agent is typing a response, which facilitates the agent-to-customer collaboration and personal attention that today’s customers demand.
     
  2. Make the lives of your agents easier and improve efficiency. Pre-scripted blocks of text can be readily selected from a menu to solve common issues quickly and effectively, cutting down resolution time. To the same point, communicating through web chat is a low-effort task compared to speaking with customers on the phone. Finally, web chat is great for off-shore agents because they won’t have to worry about an accent causing friction in a customer’s support experience.

  3. Increase agent utilization. Web chat has the potential for multiple support inquiries to be handled simultaneously, leading to more satisfied customers and more available agents. Your agents’ ability for real-time concurrent resolution is dependent on the nature of the customer inquiry and the complexity of your product or service, but this opportunity is simply not possible without deploying web chat.

  4. Customize the chat experience. Many web chat products can be deployed with different levels of visibility depending on the context of the page on which it resides. For example, when a visitor lands on the support page of your website, your web-chat widget can alert the visitor that you have agents ready and willing to assist. Guiding customers to use your web-chat widget will free up your phone queue and remind them that your support staff is available.
     
  5.  Easily ask for customer feedback. With web chat, agents can seamlessly present a post-chat survey right in the same dialogue window after the customer’s inquiry has been addressed.  Offering a post-chat feedback opportunity allows customer satisfaction data to be recorded so you can optimize your support process.

By facilitating real-time collaboration, lowering the amount of effort required from both your agents and your customers, increasing agent utilization, and recording important data, web chat can be the driving factor that enables your support team to consistently satisfy your customers.  It can also improve ROI while streamlining your support process.