3 Things To Consider Before You Get Fully Managed Live Chat
If you’re considering implementing a fully managed live chat (which according to this article, you should be), there are some important decisions you need to make before you select your provider.
Some providers insist 24/7 live chat is a waste of cash, that chat operators should have sales experience, and that chat dialogue shouldn’t be scripted. We want to put those claims to the test, so without further ado, here are the three things you need to ask yourself before you buy.
Do I need a chat service running 24/7, or just during my business hours?
Rumor has it that 24-hour operated live chat isn’t practical since your dealership isn’t open 24/7. True, your dealership may not be open 24/7, but your website sure is — and so are your other lead generation forms!
You don’t turn off your gift card offers or your trade-in offers at 8pm. Why? Because you never know when an in-market shopper is going to be browsing for a car on your site, willing to submit a lead.
Why, then, is there a question as to if you should have the most engaging, strongest lead generation widgets live at all times?
Well, no argument there!
But what about between 8pm and 12am? That late evening window is when I do all of my online surfing and shopping. And since 4 in every 5 employees in the US works the standard 9-5 workday, I would wager that I’m not alone.
Another objection to 24/7 chat states that conversations that take place during the dealership’s closed hours are incapable of solving shoppers’ problems. Obviously, chat operators won’t be able to retrieve highly specific information from you, the Dealer, when you’re out of office.
But how much easier might it be for the operator to set up an appointment or call with you, the specialist, if they don’t already have the answer? The consumer will understand if a chat operator isn’t able to deliver a price quote online at 11pm, and will agree to receiving the information the following day.
Do I want chat operators with sales experience?
Operators with sales experience, especially automotive sales experience, will likely be better at paving the way to the bottom line with a hot lead.
However, lukewarm leads may fare better (and move further) with operators who are trained to focus on custom service, information, and setting the appointment.
It’s your choice: do you want your chats to open the sales relationship, or do you want your chats to close the sale?
Should my chat operators use scripts, or aim to make the chat experience more personal?
At first glance, you’ll probably think a personalized chat experience is best. After all, no one enjoys talking to automated, monotonous robots on the phone. But is the same true for chat?
Remember that chat is a less-personal medium compared to the phone or a lead form requesting a call. Chat allows a high degree of anonymity by allowing users to extract information efficiently, without having to offer any of their own information to do it.
This is not to say that a chat conversation has less likelihood of becoming a lead (in fact, 1 in 3 chat users purchase a vehicle after engaging in live chat), but it does mean that visitors are not engaging in chat to discuss what they had for breakfast that morning.
Chat users want information about your dealership, they want the process to be hassle-free, and they want to be in control.
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Yes, scripted responses are a lot less personal than true human dialogue, but they are also more organized, professional, and successful. Chat providers who offer consoles prepared with scripted replies have conducted countless tests to see which responses will yield the best results when operators are asked particular questions.
Free-flying dialogue, on the other hand, risks lower conversion rates and increases the probability of grammatical and spelling mistakes.
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