For a while, Gavin Sloan had been using live chat on his own website, Punch! Media, a Melbourne-based advertising agency as well as on some of his clients’ websites.
Now the live chat was performing very well but, it soon became a daily struggle to resource it properly.
“We had problems with staff members forgetting to log on – or worse, logging on and then leaving their desk so customers on the website would submit questions and not receive a response,” he revealed to Anthill.
Eventually though, he was able to organise his staff such that they were always available online to engage with web visitors, but unfortunately, this only worked during business hours – they still couldn’t make it in the evenings and on weekends.
Offering a remedy to a common malady
However, the more Sloan looked into how other companies were using live chat, the more he realised that most companies were in the same boat with him. “More often than not, when I visited a website with live chat they were offline as well!”
“I saw this as an opportunity to create a service that addresses this exact problem – so I started putting together a team of customer service representatives that could assist a small group of businesses that I knew directly,” he shared.
And that is how LiveChatMonitoring.com was born. However, being bootstrapped, for the first few months, they only offered the service from 8am to 8pm – it was all he could afford as he didn’t have enough paying clients to be profitable.
The start-up managed to reel in a few new clients but Sloan says he was unable to close a number of potential clients who wanted to see longer working hours before committing.
Fortunately, after a few months, they had managed to get enough clients on board to extend their hours from 8am to midnight, and another few months later, Sloan and his team took the plunge and launched their 24/7 service.
The launch of their 24 hour customer service offering turned out to be the start-up’s turning point. Suddenly, those who had shown initial interest but backtracked due to the low working hours were now returning to sign up!
How exactly does LiveChatMonitoring.com work?
When LiveChatMonitoring.com takes on a new client, the first step is to send them a questionnaire that allows them to thoroughly describe their business and target market, as well as what their customers’ frequently asked questions are – and how they would prefer to have them responded to.
“We create a customised script for each client that includes the responses they have provided so that we always remain consistent to their brand image and personality,” Sloan explained. “Our customer service team receives regular ongoing training on each of our clients’ websites so that we remain up to date on their current promotions and events.”
“We also have some incredible features that none of our competitors can match – such as integrating our 24/7 live chat service onto our clients Facebook page and the ability to allow our clients to have their own staff log in and receive chat messages whenever they are available,” he proudly added.
What does your business have to gain?
Well, first of all, here are five reasons why live chat is the untapped potential for your business. Furthermore, stats show that consumers prefer live chat for customer service. In fact, over half of US shoppers use live chat prior to purchase.
Like Jay Z said, numbers don’t lie!
“I often use the analogy of a physical showroom having friendly staff to greet people walking in the door and offer to help them find what they are looking for,” Sloan explained. “Think of your website as a showroom, our service is your customer service representative that’s ready and willing to assist your web visitors with their questions and enquiries all day, every day.”
“As well as 24/7 real-time customer service, answering basic questions about the business, opening hours, delivery areas and the like, our team is skilled in lead generation. We send over 2000 high quality leads a month to our clients for their sales staff to contact and close. Many of our clients report that their online leads increase by around 30 per cent after adding our service,” he added.
Sloan disclosed to Anthill that he currently works with around 60 to 70 clients, and that growth has been largely organic, with most new clients coming from referrals. The start-up recently picked up clients in the US and UK, and plans to extend its reach there this year.
Want to be a better business owner? Want to be a better director? The Australian Institute of Company Directors is offering you the chance to win a year’s AICD membership and a place on the three-day Foundations of Directorship Course, designed specifically to provide a basic overview of the duties and responsibilities of directors. Prize value: $4,000 AUD. Click here for your chance to win >>