Online customer service may be one of the most complex areas to manage, for any business. It’s considered a real differentiator, and is constantly taken into account by clients. That’s why the margin for error in this area is normally very slim, whether your customer service is carried out via telephone, email or online chat.
To help you with this, we’ve put together a list with 9 tips for improving the online customer service offered by your website, focusing on different levels of functionality. In this text, the tips that we have included below are more focused on the use of the tools available on online chat platforms, to help you develop a better strategy when it comes to online customer service for websites.
1. Know the history of your client or visitor
That old saying that knowing your enemy is half the fight might be a total cliché, but it is based in truth and can be adapted for online customer service. You should never consider your client as an adversary or enemy, on the contrary, but having access to their history of past visits to the site will bring a series of advantages.
The first of these is that you’ll know what your potential client is looking for on your site. The second is that you’ll be able to save time, as, with their history, you don’t need to ask them for the information before attending to them. What’s more, this gives your clients a good impression of the organisation, and allows you to familiarise yourself with the client in question.
2. Integrate your online customer service with your app or CRM
If you already use an integrated system, this tip is essential, as it offers so many advantages. Jivochat lets you integrate your online chat into your system, facilitating access to the history of your visitor or client, as we mentioned in tip number one. Integration also works in another way, making it easy to add a new contact to your system through the chat platform.
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3. Stay connected via mobile devices
Especially useful for businesses that don’t have their own app. Through the app, you can keep attending to clients and visitors to your site. Although the main advantage of the app is being able to attend to clients even when you’re away from your computer, another advantage is being able to use your mobile internet connection to keep responding to people even when you’re having problems with your internet connection.
The apps for Android e iOS have most of the basic functions that the programs for PC and Mac do. They display the flag of the country the visitor is in, and give you information about which page of the site they’re on, amongst other features.
4. Collect essential information, such as emails
This might be the most important tip on this list: always try to collect your visitor’s basic information, such as their name and email address. As well as helping you to identify them on a future visit, collecting emails is essential for increasing your mailing list for email marketing. If you’re struggling to get the email address, you can also manually find and add them by using email finders.
You could train your operators to request this information on all occasions, but there’s a tool which can do the work for your team: a pre-chat form. The use of this form has two main advantages: inclusion of the client and time-saving. The most effective way of using this form is whilst a client is waiting, making use of the time they spend in the queue. With JivoChat, this is extremely easy to set up.
5. Use proactive chat invitations
Make full use of proactive chat invitations. Currently, 70% of conversations started on websites that use JivoChat as an online customer service solution start with proactive chat invitations. These invitations can work in two different ways.
The first is manual: your operator sees that a visitor has been on a page for a certain amount of time and directly approaches them. The second is automatic (or proactive), which does the same thing, but means you don’t need to monitor or select clients, although it’s true that the invitations aren’t as personal as with the previous option. You are the one that establishes how the automatic invite works. For example, you can send an invite when a client is on the second page they’ve visited on your site. It’s also possible to personalise a message depending on which page of the site they’re on.
6. Have a limit for the number of simultaneous chats
Departing a little from the rule we’ve followed for the tips included up till now, this one is aimed at the operators, supervisors and the owner of the business. Multi-tasking is essential when it comes to online customer service, as being able to attend to more than one client as once is one of the main advantages of using an online chat.
However, it’s always a good idea to be aware of people’s limits and establish rules for simultaneous customer service. Not sticking to this limit might cause confusion and mistakes that could be avoided. Not only that, it also ends up giving clients a terrible impression of your company, as they no longer have the feeling of being attended to personally.
7. Allow for voice calls
Not everyone prefers being dealt with by text. That’s why it’s always a good idea to give a client the option to carry on or to start a voice conversation. In this way, your online customer service becomes more flexible and wide-reaching, although you do lose the advantage of being able to attend to multiple clients at once.
8. Self-assesses using client feedback and customer service records
Self-assessment is one of the most difficult habits to keep up, but also one of the most rewarding. That’s why it’s a good idea to set specific days of the week for evaluating the quality of your customer service.
There are two ways to do this on Jivochat: the first is through feedback from the client themselves, which could be in the form of a post-attendance form on which they can add notes or comments. The second method requires more work and consists of selecting a few random conversations from each operator and analysing them to figure out which areas they could improve on. Jivochat offers both possibilities, letting you carry out qualitative self-assessments from different perspectives.
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9. Use Analytics to discover your strengths and weaknesses
Quantitative self-assessment is also important to help you truly understand your strengths and weaknesses. Through analytical tools (which can be integrated with Google Analytics), you can establish the general level of satisfaction or the number of conversions resulting from your online customer service.
Other uses for analytical tools within Jivochat are: knowing which pages on your site or ecommerce are most visited, what the main questions are that your clients have when they buy your product or service, and what are the most searched for words on your site, amongst others. Analytics are essential to help you set new strategies for your business, and they can’t be ignored.
Were these tips useful? All the tips mentioned can be put into practice with Jivochat, but they aren’t the only ones. Check out the complete list of everything that Jivochat could offer your business by having a look at our page!