/ Customers and Buyers

Sorry doesn't cut it...

Sorry, I was busy: 5 steps to still keep the customer

‘I’m sorry I was busy’ has no place in sales. Busy on what? With whom? Am I not important? Are they more important to you than me? I’m sorry I was busy is not a comment that brings a bright future to anyone in sales – and let’s face it, that’s most of us.

In the physical world we have learnt to do this. Customer service desks routinely measure call wait times, accuracy of first response, escalation percentages etc to ensure they are sufficiently responsive to customers.

And then we come to ‘live chat’. What a really crap name. Typically it is anything but.

With a major cellular operator I was advised it would be 15 minutes before a live chat could begin. I didn’t wait. I now use another company. Granted that is not routine, but the norm is no more satisfying.

Service level = Agent numbers / (complexity x calls)

However,once you realise that live chat is a clever cost saving ruse to enable one agent to handle multiple calls it all starts to make sense. Its not that they are really slow readers, or that Google translate is on a go slow (sorry to my overseas call centre buddy’s – I love you really) or even that they are researching the answer. That 8 minute delay between responses is because they are dealing with someone else while I’m waiting!

Disconnect and you’re ‘dead’

I then had a surreal experience. I waited sooooo long for a response that I got timed out. Me waiting for you…and you timed me out. What the f…! And thats it, my session is dead, I have to start over. With a new provider in my case!

Incompetence is genius?

And then the final insult. Here I am actually being served. By an ID10t. An error of a human being. I wanted you to help me…. Not the other way around. Get lost, I’m done with it.

Faith restored

And then I find a company that actually does live chat well. It could be because online is their livelihood, but the team at Shopify are brilliant. My query is specific, my request is not possible. Damn. But you could do it like this…. Top drawer people.

Five factors for success to make Live Chat sing

  • Response is fast
  • Chat is persistent, in case you need to take a break
  • Answer is given and is correct
  • Text is available to review offline

Ultimately, get rid of the conduit person and talk direct to the computer