10 Tips for Optimal Chat Support

Customer support is critical to the success of your business. It’s vital to provide that top-notch service across all of the channels your customers use to get in touch with you. This means your online chat support agents are just as important to your digital customer service efforts as those taking phone calls and pulling email tickets. They’re all similarly tasked with ensuring that customers contacting your company go away feeling satisfied. To that end, here are 10 tips your team can utilize to provide optimal live-chat support:

Keep the lines of communication open. Once you receive a request, acknowledge receipt of it as quickly as possible. Then as you help the customer resolve their issue, remind them that you’re working on it and thank them for their patience. There’s no guarantee you’ll solve the issue quickly. By staying in touch with the customer, you’ll at least let them know that it’s in progress and that you’re not ignoring them.

Write in the active voice. Make your sentences clearer by avoiding writing in the passive voice. This helps you communicate with the customer more effectively, and it’s more likely they’ll understand your explanations or instructions.

Offer native-tongue service. To accommodate your users throughout the world, offer chat customer support in the native languages of the regions in which your product or service is distributed. This goes beyond ensuring that you’re providing the same superior service to English-speaking and non-English speaking customers alike. Regional and native support agents will also have a better cultural understanding of the audience and an authentic sense of their product affinities.

Be professional and focus on high-quality written communication. In today’s age of shorthand text and messaging that consists of lingos and slang, it’s easy to fall into that style of writing during chat support interactions — especially if the customer is using that level of communication. While it’s good that your chat customer support team reflects a friendly tone, it’s important to remain professional with proper grammar and written etiquette.

Use the customer’s first name. There’s nothing a customer likes to hear more than their own name. Using their given name is a courteous way to establish a genuine human connection. Showing the customer you remember their name means they’re more likely to assume you’re thorough in all aspects of the customer service experience. You don’t have to overdo it, but use it regularly throughout the interaction.

Offer omnichannel capabilities. Your customers will often use chat customer support as a convenient method to get assistance for many reasons, such as personal preference or multitasking. However, their needs may require additional research or complicated technical steps better explained over a phone call or email/ticket. Your chat team should have the ability to contact your customer by the method that best resolves their need, whether that’s scheduling a phone call to talk through the solution or submitting an email for further research and follow-up. The ability to do this within the same interaction and on behalf of the customer will set your chat experience positively apart from others.

Always stay positive. Maintaining an empathetic, positive attitude goes a long, long way. Look at each problem as a new opportunity to present the customer with a satisfying solution. For example, if your customer has a complaint about a certain service, you may be able to offer a free or discounted additional product in order to make them happy. Strive to leave them feeling better than when they contacted you. Remind the customer that you understand their frustration and will work as hard as possible to resolve the issue in a way that leaves them delighted.

Ask the customer to fill out a survey. Give your customers the opportunity to provide feedback on the interaction. Keeping it on the same channel as the live chat makes it more likely the user will fill out the survey and give your company valuable data on how you managed the interaction. It also increases the likelihood that you’ll retain that customer.

Send the chat history. Once the encounter is complete, email the chat history to the customer or provide a way for them to download the conversation so they can refer back to the interaction. They may need this if additional follow-up is required, and consumers appreciate companies that practice transparency when it comes to customer service.

Be realistic. Being upfront with your customers will build their trust. If you mislead or mischaracterize what will happen in order to make them happy, it could backfire if the solution doesn’t come to fruition. They may not always love the answers you give them, but they’ll always appreciate being told precisely what to expect and exactly what’s happening.

Following these simple tips can help your chat customer support team create a systemic practice that leaves customers satisfied and ready to give you more business. For more great tips on how you can provide winning digital customer support through a flexible, cost-effective solution, contact us today!

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