Hi there, in this post we’re going to talk about LiveChat and how to leverage it on your website to drive improved business outcomes. We’ll cover 2 main topics:
- Why you should leverage LiveChat on your website, and
- Six best practices for optimizing your LiveChat experience.
Why should you leverage LiveChat on your website?
There is a bunch of good reasons to leverage LiveChat on your website, but let me just focus on two most positive reasons.
Number 1 , it is a fantastic customer engagement channel on a platform that is typically lacking in human touch points.
Most web visitors you receive today will be unknown to you. You’ll see them in your web analytics, but a significant portion will never get in touch.
Of course, a portion of these visitors are not always your target consumers, but it’s also possible your current web presence is not providing enough information in the right format to effectively sell your offering.
LiveChat will is not a silver bullet, but it does offer you an additional tool to proactively reach out and try to engage with a segment of these unknown visitors that currently depart and never come back.
My recommendation is to try it for a month and see how it performs.
6 Best Practices for LiveChat on your Website
Let’s touch upon some best practices for optimizing LiveChat engagement on your website.
Number 1 – Be Fast
Whenever a visitor initiates a chat, be sure that you’re fast to the punch in beginning the engagement. Even a 1-minute wait time may be enough to lose the opportunity for a conversation to take place. You have to jump in as quickly as possible.
Many of the leading LiveChat vendors provide iOS & Android applications allowing you to set-up notifications and handle conversations away from your desk in real time.
In situations where you can’t afford to have dedicated support staff manning your LiveChat, this is a great way to keep yourself plugged in without being tied to your computer.
Number 2 – Introduce Yourself
The first interaction in any conversation should always be a quick introduction, for example ‘Hello, this is Ben how can I help you today?’. It immediately highlights to the customer that you’re active in the conversation and increases the likelihood that they will continue the dialogue or at least stick around to hear your next sentence.
Number 3 – Remove Barriers to Engage
Think customer first – nobody likes to complete forms.
Remove as many barriers as possible for the visitor to engage with you. This basically means don’t ask for pre-chat information such as name, email, phone, company name and so forth.
You want to get the person into a conversation with a real person as quickly as possible and then qualify them through the conversation.
If you ask the right questions you should be able to proactively gather pertinent contact information as the discussion unfolds.
Number 4 – Show Yourself
There are literally hundreds of LiveChat vendors available to choose from and many of them have similar functionality when you do a side-by-side feature comparison. One feature I would highly recommend you include in your decision criteria is the ability to add agent avatars to your chat windows.
I would stay away from cartoony avatars – they add nothing and in many cases look unprofessional. Make the effort to get some great employee photographs and ensure these are highly visible in the chat dialogue with your customers.
It will add an extra element of personalization and give the visitor a better sense of engaging with a real human being.
Number 5 – Leverage Existing Content
If you have existing content, case studies or FAQs that directly answer customer queries then leverage them as part of the dialogue in the chat.
Most modern LiveChat products maintain the conversation as the customer moves from page to page or opens up new tabs in their browser so you can keep the conversation going whilst following the customers path around the website.
This is a great way of answering customer questions with existing content. You should also be reviewing common questions that come up via chat and considering how to package up answers to these questions in your website for future usage.
Number 6 – Use Proactive Chat Pop-Ups (Tactically)
Proactive chat pop-ups are typically rule based and act to jump out to specific website visitors to pull them into a LiveChat conversation. If done correctly, they will drive incremental engagements.
There is no getting away from the fact that pop-ups can also be annoying, so you really need to identify very specific pages or scenarios when a proactive pop-up is most appropriate.
A couple of good scenarios would be time based, only firing the pop-up after a set period of stagnation on a specific page, let’s say 60 seconds.
Another good scenario is firing a pop-up only on very specific pages, for example a product page or a pricing page that suggests a visitor is closer to an end point in their journey.
As with everything on the web – test and learn, don’t assume your first approach is the best. You can try full page pop-ups vs. subtle bottom right corner for example and observe which has the best impact on chat performance metrics.
So, lets recap quickly:
(1) LiveChat is a great additional engagement tool for the web.
(2) It can be implemented and tested as a free trial to prove ROI.
To maximize the benefits, focus on these 6 key ingredients:
(1) Be Fast
(2) Introduce Yourself
(3) Remove Barriers to Engage
(4) Show Yourself
(5) Leverage Existing Content
(6) Use Proactive Chat Pop-Ups Tactically
I’ve personally implemented LiveChat functionality into many businesses in the past few years and they all delivered a positive ROI case. With a free trial and minimal implementation fuss – give it a go!