Live Chat Benchmark Report 2020

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Chapter 5

Proactive Chat Acceptance Rate

1.91% of all chats were initiated by agents

Consumer Services had the highest proactive chat acceptance rate in 2019.

As with canned messages, brands have to strike a delicate balance when it comes to proactive chat invitations. In this case, at issue are the opposing forces of eagerness and helpfulness. Being too proactive can come across as intrusive, but reaching out at just the right moment can save a customer from a frustrating experience.

Kaye Chapman
Learning & Development Manager, Comm100

Proactive chat invitations – when the agent invites the visitor to chat instead of the other way around – allow businesses to capture a customer’s attention quickly before they move on.

There are a lot of reasons for your agents to reach out proactively. For example, if a visitor is on a high-value page but they’ve been browsing for longer than normal, your agent could reach out to ask them if they have any questions specifically related to the content they’re looking at. This could help increase conversions and reduce bounce rates. Similarly, if your agents identify a VIP customer on your site (based on their purchase history visible through CRM integration), they can extend a white glove offer of assistance that will be greatly appreciated.

How many of all proactive chat invitations are accepted? There are notable variations between industries. Consumer Services currently leads the pack with a 1.27-point difference over Recreation, the second highest, with Business Services coming in a close third. The lowest acceptance rate is Travel at 2.18%.

Proactive chat acceptance rates provide strong clues about the success of your chat strategy and identify areas to optimize visitor engagement and conversion. 2019 data shows that 1.91% of all completed chats came from invitations. It might not sound like much, but that’s over 1 million chats!

Proactive chat can deliver a significantly higher ROI than passively waiting for visitors to seek you out, but only when done correctly. Companies can automate proactive chat invitations, but should take the time to structure them properly to align with the visitor’s situation and engage them at exactly the right time – the page they’re on, how long they’ve been on your site, the value of their shopping cart, etc.

Most important of all, organizations need to be cognizant of the user experience – if a visitor doesn’t accept an invitation the first one or two times, it’s likely smart to stop trying and to ensure that automated invitations are kept to within reasonable limits.

2019 Proactive Chat Acceptance by Industry

Proactive Chat Acceptance

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