March 14, 2014 | By

[Webinar Recap] Tips, Tricks, and Secrets to Live Chat Success

I recently joined Lauren Freedman, President of the e-tailing group, and Jon Abt, BoldChat customer and Co-President of Abt Electronics to host a webinar entitled, “Tips, Tricks and Secrets to Live Chat Success.” The three of us discussed live chat’s increasingly essential role in the customer experience, and shared expert insights into how companies can most effectively and successfully leverage the tool.

Lauren began by covering highlights, reflections, and best practices from the e-tailing group’s own expert research. The discussion then turned to Abt. Abt Electronics has been named the “Best Place” to buy appliances in the US for three years in a row, is the recipient of several awards for retail excellence, and has enjoyed a 20% increase in onsite sales conversions since implementing live chat.

By the time we turned it over to Q&A, time was almost up. Here are some questions we didn’t get to address during the webinar.

Q: We seem to get quite a few disconnects. Since we send transcripts, is there enough value in adding the answer/solution? Or should we, too, disconnect and get to the next chat?

A: If by ‘disconnect’ you mean that the would-be chatter simply quits either before the chat actually begins then yes, just move on – it’s way more efficient.  If they disconnect during the conversation, then it’s safe to assume it was unintentional, so I’d finish the answer before leaving the chat. All that said, you shouldn’t be experiencing disconnect behavior except very intermittently.  If you are, and you are our customer, please contact us so we can verify your set-up and network configurations.  If the disconnects are happening before the chatter even says anything, consider using a pre-chat form which will cut down on errant chats.

Q: I have a very small customer service team. 1-3 people on the phones/email at one time. Can one person move between phone and chat easily, or must they be dedicated to one or the other?

A: It depends on the chat volume you think you’ll generate, but we certainly have customers that multitask. One thing that is pretty clear, however, is that if an agent is engaged in more than one chat, they are going to have to not take phone calls until those chats end.

Q: What is the success rate of Live Chat vs. Live Voice?

A: Obviously, this will differ based on many factors including your industry, website traffic, etc.  A good place to find some general information about which channel is best suited to certain situations (and their associated costs) is in the Aberdeen multi-channel report on

Q: How do you know which device the customer is using?

A: Hopefully the chat platform you’re using will tell you.  BoldChat, for example, includes a “Mobility” field that tells the agent, front and center, whether they are chatting with a mobile user or a desktop user.

Q: We offer a friendly invite, but get very low participation. How do you suggest boosting accept rates with customers?

A: First, check your acceptance rate against benchmark by downloading our Benchmark report on  Many customers include offers in their invites to boost accept rates, “Chat with me for Free Shipping!” for example.

Whether you’re considering live chat, or you’re already using it, this is a lively discussion you don’t want to miss. Download and listen to the webinar now.

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