For my customers, buying from me is an important decision, and I’m guessing it’s probably the same for yours too. So when communicating with them, it’s important to remember one thing:
All truly important conversations are instant
When was the last time you sent an email to a friend or loved one about an emotionally important issue? Or even worse, filled out a form:
Name: John Doe
Message: I love you. Will you marry me?
Everything important is done live. Nobody wants to wait to get the answer to life’s important questions and emotion is kept alive more easily in live conversations. When you think that around 80% of purchase decision-making is emotional, that is a big benefit. What’s more, things that are done live feel more important and engaging in the moment than things done by email or long-term message and reply.
That’s even more true nowadays when customers are used to WhatsApping, sending instant messages and texting. That means that for your users, being able to contact you this way on your website feels more natural, useful and attractive than most other options.
It’s as easy for you, the website owner, as replying to a text as well.
Sales and marketing benefits
When it comes to selling your products and services, live chat can make a huge difference to your site’s effectiveness. When HubSpot added live chat options to their marketing pages, they achieved a 160% increase in conversions on those pages1. Meanwhile, Goinflow experienced a 6% revenue increase due to introducing live marketing2. That’s enough for a 400k/year business to hire an extra mid-level employee, or for a 100k/year solo operation to rent an Audi A7!
In fact, live chat sits at the heart of a whole revolution in online marketing that is proving very effective. Conversational marketing has emerged from consumer demands for instant information and interactive human responses throughout the day. People who are used to getting films on demand, groceries to their door and packages delivered within 24 hours are not happy to wait for days for a response to a request form. That’s why more than three in every five would-be HubSpot prospects turned their back on the business before it introduced live chat.
Customer service benefits
Live chat is as good at satisfying customers and keeping them loyal as it is at attracting them.
Have you ever had to report a faulty purchase or service problem and then wait an age for a response? How irritating was it and how much better does it feel when you can talk the issue over with someone straight away?
I reckon pretty much all of you answered the same way, and won’t be surprised to discover that 79% of customers prefer live-chat customer services2. More customers using live chat were satisfied with their experience (82%) than with any other type of communication3. I don’t need to tell you about the power of customer satisfaction where loyalty, recommendations and reputation are concerned.
It’s easy too
You might be worried that live chat sounds like a big undertaking for a small or even medium business. After all, it does involve being on call a lot of the time.
Really though, part of the reason why live chat works so well is that it’s as easy as messaging friends on a phone. In fact, once you have installed the app, it’s pretty much identical. You get a phone notification when someone messages you. Then you can respond in an instant messenger that anyone with Facebook or WhatsApp experience will be used to.
Which live chat software is best?
Chaport is a good free live chat solution that works well at a basic level for small or solo operations. It allows one operator to host as many chats as they want through their browser, mobile or desktop app. The free version comes with basic customisation options, and more can be added for a price. These include bot chats, and customer experience improvement options.
If you want to pay for the best, LiveChat is the leader in the sphere and the best option. They don’t offer a free option because they don’t have to. There is a short free trial to familiarise users with the software though and the starter plan runs from $16. It’s attractively designed, fast, easy to use and highly integrable.
Of course, if you want to boost your conversions and customer satisfaction by offering live chat on your site, we can set it up and help you to operate it effectively. Just get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org.
1) Marcus Sheridan (2019) They Ask, You Answer Hoboken: Wiley