Making use of an online chat is vital for lots of different kinds of websites, but mainly when we’re taking about ecommerce. Using a commercial chat on a site can help to reduce call centre costs, and is one of the cheapest options out there. It becomes even more appealing when you consider that some online chat platforms, including JivoChat, allow voice calls. However, like every aspect of your business, your approach to your online chat needs to be carefully considered and you need to follow a clear plan. That’s why we’ve put together a list of 7 strategies that you can adopt for your commercial chat.
1. Defining objectives
It’s clear that the objective of using a commercial chat is offering customer service to your clients, but this doesn’t have to be the only aim of using the tool. The online chat can also be used to expand your mailing list, helping you to establish your email marketing – check out our 30 tips for how to use email marketing effectively! -, amongst other things.
That’s why it’s worth considering what your approach will be to online customer service on your commercial chat. For a new business, it could be a good idea to focus your customer service on building up your contact base. Another aim you could consider is using the customer service team to sell complimentary or additional services to existing clients.
2. Collecting emails
As we’ve mentioned above, you can use a commercial chat to increase your list of contacts. Even if expanding your mailing list isn’t your main aim, you can still be collecting contact details for your database. If you don’t want your team to end up wasting too much of a visitor’s time asking them for information, with JivoChat you can give your client a pre-chat form, which he can fill in before they speak to an operator.
It’s worth remembering that the form should be short, so that it doesn’t take more than a minute for a client to fill it in. Things like their name and email could be enough to add them to your database, as other information like their location and the pages they have visited on your site are already available in the chat window.
3. A proactive approach
A proactive approach is one of the main advantages of customer service through online chats. This feature has been so successful, it’s now practically obligatory for an ecommerce business to have it. A survey done in 2011 by the site e-tailing, proved that sending proactive invitations reduces the number of people that abandon their virtual shopping carts by between 6 and 8%.
A tip for using the proactive chat successfully is to set a minimum time that the person in question has to be on your site. After this time has passed, JivoChat sends a message to the visitor, asking them if they need help. It’s also possible to configure your online chat so that it contacts visitors on specific pages within your website.
4. Establish a customer service model
All customer service needs to follow a pattern, and your commercial chat shouldn’t be any different. No matter what sector you’re in, you need to consider things such as tone and the level of formality required, which will be different from business to business.
To establish the models that your customer service will follow, ask yourself a few of the following questions. How formal will the agents be when speaking to clients? Will the agents be trained to know a little about all the products or services, or will they specialise in certain areas? In which situations will they need more information, or try to close a sale? How will they greet and say goodbye to clients?
This is important so that, in most the situations that your customer service team will come up against, they have the resources necessary to deliver exceptional customer service.
5. Schedule customer service times to reflect peak visiting times.
This is something that will change depending on the area you’re operating in, but it’s important to assess which are the best times for you to offer customer service. If your business is largely B2B, normal commercial hours will probably be enough. However, if your ecommerce site is focused on the consumer, you will need to provide customer service whenever your visitors tend to be online.
Normally, consumers access ecommerce sites when they aren’t working, for example at lunch or after work, which could mean you need to adapt. For example, starting customer service later, covering lunch time and the time when people get home from work could be effective strategies in this case, but neither are they set in stone. It’s worth finding out when most visitors access your site or when you make the most sales, and adapting to these times.
6. Use your customer service for sales
One of the mains aims for your commercial chat can be promoting sales. This opportunity is even better if your business sells products which complement each other, for example smartphones and accessories.
Combining a sales strategy based on online customer service with the proactive chat tool, for example, could mean your conversions soar. It’s worth remembering that not all the visitors on your site intend to buy. For example, there could be clients on your site that are unsatisfied with something. That’s why it’s important to have strategies in places for other types of interactions than just sales. If you don’t, and an operator tries to offer a product to an unsatisfied customer, it could backfire.
7. Continually evaluate and adapt your strategies
This is the only one of these strategies that should never be changed. You need to make sure you’re currently evaluating results and adapting your other strategies to reach your objectives. Although the strategies mentioned here are normally effective, it’s possible that a few of them won’t work due to a serious of factors that we can’t go into in full here.
This is why you always need analytical tools to hand. Jivochat lets you save backups of all chats as well as quantitatively assessing customer service. With a plethora of different strategies at your disposal, you can carry out tests to figure out which will work best for your business. We also strongly recommend that you stay up to date with new trends in commercial chats and new online chat features.
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What strategies are you using for your commercial chat?
After reading this text, we guarantee that it will become easier to get your online customer service through your commercial chat on the right track. If you like, you can check out the different tools and prices that Jivochat offers right now. JivoChat offers a wide range of features that will help you to implement all the strategies you can use to grow your business. Click here to try it out!