Despite the growing demand for live chat and the indisputable evidence that customers prefer this channel, many companies have not yet implemented it. According to a report published by TELUS International, many major companies still do not use any sort of live chat system on their websites. A study of 1,000 websites found that only 9 percent of sites use live chat to provide real-time support to their customers.
If your competitors don’t have a prominent or proactive live chat presence on their websites, then you have a valuable opportunity to gain a competitive advantage. While customers are stuck waiting in your competitor’s phone or email queues, live chat will help you answer visitor questions and convert sales in real time. With live chat, you will have more opportunities to engage with customers and close sales while your competitor sorts through inquiries.
How can you make this happen?
There are two keys to gaining a competitive advantage with live chat. The first is to use proactive live chat so that you’re not waiting for visitors to reach out to you before trying to close a sale. The second is to ensure that your live chat agents are both trained and incentivized to close sales during chat transactions. By ensuring that your agents are knowledgeable and empowered to effectively close sales, you limit the possibility of your consumer or user returning to a competitor’s website.
To get a leg-up on the competition with live chat, don’t forget that wait time is everything. Just as a customer may abandon a competitor while waiting for a phone or email contact, a customer may abandon you if you make them wait too long on a chat. Use live chat reporting tools to easily manage your staffing and availability, so that you don’t accidentally drive users away.