Live Chat: Do Consumers Love It or Hate It?

More websites, especially ecommerce sites, are turning to live chat in order to provide their customers with more prompt and thorough customer service and an enhanced online experience. Live chat can also help online business gather customer data, capture addresses, and increase conversions. But how do consumers feel about this service?

The most recently updated Internet Statistics Compendium from E-Consultancy, along with a Live Chat Effectiveness report from BoldChat, takes a look at live chat data from US and UK consumers to provide an overview of how online visitors view live chat.

Live chat: A growing practice

The use of live chat among consumers has seen significant growth in recent years. From 2011 to 2012, online shoppers engaging in live chat grew from 50.4% to more than 65% in the US, and from 41% to 53% in the UK.

What’s more, 31% of online shoppers from both the US and the UK stated that they’d be more likely to make a purchase after a live chat with a customer service rep—a promising figure for conversions.

Preferences for live chat

Many ecommerce websites offer multiple ways to contact them with questions or problems. The most frequently used are email, phone, live chat, and social media. Which do online shoppers prefer?

According to BoldChat:

  • 54% of consumers still prefer email, but
  • 21% prefer live chat first—almost as many as…
  • 23% who prefer using the phone, and far more than…
  • 2% who use social media channels.

Why do consumers like live chat? For most, it’s all about time. Out of those online shoppers who prefer chat, 79% said their preference was because their questions were answered quickly, and 46% agreed that live chat is the most efficient out of all the communication options.

If you’re considering adding live chat to your ecommerce website, Informatix can help. Contact us to learn more about our comprehensive, cost-effective live chat solutions for your online business.

Contact us today to take advantage of our 30-day live chat trial!

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