Webchat | Should you offer Webchat as a service?

Webchat

Webchat – do you lose business because your prospective customers get fed up not being able to find out information?  Well, you will be pleased to know that there is something you can do about that. Should you offer Webchat for your customers?

Customers want to feel important, after all they are intending on handing over their money directly to you for a product or service that you have said you will provide them with.  So, if they have questions about the product or service, they will want answers promptly from you or they will more than likely go elsewhere.

Remember customer service should be at the heart of your business.

What is already available?

There are many ways you can offer direct communication avenues for your customers.

  • Voice (telephone/mobile/VOIP)
  • Email
  • Text
  • Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tik Tok)
  • Mailshots
  • Letters
  • Press releases
  • Fax

But is that enough?  With the continual development of technology, a change in shopping habits, and a younger customer base to consider, now is the time to introduce Webchat.  

In 2021 an amazing 46% of customers indicated they would prefer webchat to other forms such as email or social media.

What is Webchat?

Webchat is a tool that allows you to communicate directly with your customers in real time.  Generally this can take place using a web browser and therefore does not require any specific type of software.

If you do wish to utilise software which will help with CRM (client relationship management) then most come in the form of a plugin or app.  There are a wide range of companies offering software that can cope with small to large chat volumes. They can be as simple or as complicated as you need. 

Webchat customer agents can be in-house, outsourced to service centres, or answered by freelance remote workers | virtual assistants.

Why should I offer webchat?

You should offer this service for your customers as it improves the overall customer experience.

Customers prefer webchat as it happens in real-time, they are in control of the ‘now’ and they know they will get their query responded to immediately.

Even if the response is not what they wished for they feel that they asked for help and someone responded.  This is much more responsive than being put on hold in a long telephone queue, sending off a letter in the mail, or waiting for an email response from a support team that only works during office hours. It lets you build a connection with your customers

Do you know your customer?  Webchat allows you to enter into direct dialogue with your customer.  You can pick up on how the conversation is developing – do they seem annoyed, or accepting, of the information you are giving them?  Can you adopt a less formal approach, will they respond to a more familiar tone of language?  All this can be established within a few keystrokes.

Webchat allows for increased customer engagement

If your customer has made direct contact with you via webchat, they already feel that they are communicating directly with you.  This allows them to feel as though they are communicating with an individual who can listen and help them. 

Note – if you have a large team of customer service webchat agents it may be an idea to include their names and a photograph to make the experience more personal.  This will allow your customer to feel as though they are talking directly to someone human rather than just a voice at the end of the phone.

Webchat allows for increased sales

Once the webchat agent has established a good rapport with the customer there may be an opportunity to upsell products or suggest different add-ons.  Direct discussion can lead to an increase in sales based on the trust established between the webchat agent and the customer.

Webchat allows you to retain control

Once a line of communication has been established up with your potential customer there is a far higher chance that they will remain on-line until the situation has been resolved.  This does not always mean there is a problem, they could just want further information before making their purchase.  Using webchat ensures they remain on your website, and they are less likely to go elsewhere.

Webchat allows you to identify repeat customer issues

Through use of a good CRM system any information gathered will help identify repeating issues or areas of concern that your customers are experiencing.  Identification of such issues can be quickly addressed, and measures put in place to ensure suitable resolutions are found.

Conclusion

So why should you offer webchat for your customers? Webchat is a useful tool, among others, in the struggle to keep your customers happy. The use of well-versed webchat agents will ensure that your company message is shared with your customer. The recording of issues identified through the chat can be addressed quickly thereby offering your customers a fast response to their query.  Further identification of recurring issues will allow for action to be taken promptly to address any ongoing issues in the future.