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How to transform your live chat into a proactive sales tool

Published 29 Apr 2019 by Chris Glover, CANDDi
Read this in about 4 minutes

You don’t need us to tell you how useful live chat is.

It’s fast, convenient, and customer friendly. In fact, more than half of prospects actually prefer it to a phone call. That said, we’d like you to forget about the customer’s live chat experience for a minute.

Not that you shouldn’t focus on that; of course you should. And thankfully, there are plenty of articles out there to tell you how to do exactly that.

But this isn’t one of them.

The following post will detail how you can get the most out of your live chat. Find out how to stop using it exclusively as a reactive tool for pleasing customers, and let it double as a proactive tool for driving conversions.

Sell to your live chat users

This one sounds obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t do it.

It’s easy for teams to get complacent and allow their live chat responses to become passive. Here’s an example:

Prospect: Hello. Is it possible to pay monthly for your software?

Team member: Hi! Yes - we offer both monthly and annual subscriptions.

Prospect: Okay, thanks!

Team member: Have a nice day!

There isn’t technically anything wrong here. Live chat has served its surface-level purpose: to help with a customer’s query.

However, that “query” wasn’t just a query, was it? To any competent salesperson, the prospect didn’t just say “Is it possible to pay monthly?”, they actually said: “I’m very close to buying!”

Here’s how the chat should have gone:

Prospect: Hello. Is it possible to pay monthly for your software?

Team member: Hi! Yes - we offer both monthly and annual subscriptions. Why don’t we get you booked in for a quick demo? We can discuss in much more detail all the payment options available.

Prospect: Where do I sign?!

Okay, maybe it won’t always be this easy. But if done correctly, this little bit of a sales-y approach to live chat responses means that demo bookings (or whatever your own desired conversion may be) can be achieved right there and then in the chat itself.

Integrate live chat with your existing systems

This is where using your live chat gets interesting.

It’s standard practice to integrate live chat with your CRM. Since prospects will usually be willing to input their name and email address into the live chat - it’s a trade-off for a speedy response - live chats essentially become data capture tools.

However, integrating your live chat with your a visitor-level tracking tool like CANDDi takes things way further.

Instead of simply driving some enhanced data into a CRM profile, what if you could pair that name and email address with all of the individual’s past activity on your site for a complete picture?

I’ll give you an example of how we’ve found this useful:

  1. When someone lands on our site and is interested enough to make a live chat enquiry, the automated response asks for their email address.
  2. CANDDi then automatically adds this name and email address into the visitor’s profile.
  3. Our sales team now has a complete picture of the prospect; their name, company, email address, and a detailed list of their activity on our website.

This is useful for two reasons. Firstly, we can respond with much more useful and intelligent answers since their activity can enlighten us to their specific interests. Secondly, they now become a valuable sales lead with a data-rich profile in CANDDi.

The more observant of you may have noticed that little chat in the bottom right of your screen attempting to do that right now.

If you really want to see how live chat can be leveraged as an intelligent sales tool, why not give us a reply?

Keep track of recurring themes

After running live chat on your website for a while, you’ll start to notice similarities in your interactions. Note these down; there’s a lot to be learned here.

First, and most simply, you can begin to get a more detailed picture of the people you’re selling to. It’s always helpful to get data like this when identifying buyer personas for your business.

Second, you’ll learn which aspects of your product or service aren’t made clear enough by your site. Got a lot of people asking about the difference between two of your packages? It’s time to update your product page with a clearer distinction.

Finally - and most importantly - you’ll learn about your prospects’ fears. You should obsess over these.

For us, one of these fears was GDPR. We found that plenty of our prospects were using the live chat function to ask if our visitor tracking tool was completely GDPR compliant.

So what did we do?

We shaped much of our marketing efforts specifically around this. We wrote blogs, sent out email campaigns, and redesigned much of the content on our website to make one thing abundantly clear: yes, CANDDi is 100% GDPR compliant.

As a result, we didn’t just get fewer live chats asking about GDPR; we found that most of our interactions with prospects (phone calls, demos, etc.) began with them having already gotten over their fear of data protection laws.

The bottom line is this: live chat is fast becoming an essential communication tool for businesses. And, while it’s an ideal tool for customer support, this doesn’t mean you should use it exclusively as such.

With the injection of some sales mentality, a little bit of clever integration with CANDDi, and a proactive approach to the data it generates, live chat can quickly become a crucial part of your sales process.

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