We wanted to augment the statistics with qualitative information, like e-tailer concerns and roadblocks associated with live chat. This project also highlights the sales and service benefits derived from a 'best practices' live chat implementation.
Wichita, KS (PRWEB) June 9, 2010 —
Bold Software today announced the availability of “What Has Live Chat Done for You?”, a series of conversations with seven Internet Retailer 500 companies.
“We conduct a lot of quantitative research regarding live chat in order to learn more from online shoppers such as when, how, where and why they like to chat,” said Bold Software President and CEO Steve Castro-Miller. “But with this project, we wanted to augment the statistics with more qualitative information, like e-tailer concerns and roadblocks associated with implementing live chat. In addition to dispelling some preconceived notions about live chat, it also highlights the sales and service benefits derived from a live chat implementation that incorporates best practices.”
“What Has Live Chat Done For You,” released in conjunction with the beginning of the Internet Retailer Conference & Exposition, includes conversations with the following Internet Retailer Top 500 companies:
- Abt Electronics (#143)
- Boston Green Goods(#396)
- iS3/Stopzilla (#326)
- Jomashop (#201)
- ReStockIt (#365)
- U.S. Mattress (#458)
Internet Retailer 500 Company Highlights
The report touches on initial questions and concerns related to implementing live chat. For instance, furniture and mattress e-tailer U.S. Mattress has been in business for seven years, and has experienced significant growth since its inception. The company began weighing the pros and cons of live chat a few years ago when the customer service center was so consistently busy that it needed to add another communication channel for its customers. However, US-Mattress Production Line Specialist Bobby Mercader and his team were hesitant and wondered if their customers would be comfortable using the technology. “Our typical customer is not Internet savvy, so we were unsure whether they’d embrace live chat.”
Once the decision to implement BoldChat was made, website owners had varying requirements for how they wanted to manage their implementation, which are detailed in the document. For instance, Boston Green Goods wanted a “self-service” approach to live chat. The company’s talented marketing team built, maintained and optimized the website so they wanted to have full control of the live chat software in order to do testing and improve performance on the fly. “We wanted to self-manage the experience and alter the site to respond to our visitor’s needs,” said Chief Operating officer Robert Scott. We looked at several cost-effective, self-service vendors and it became a really quick decision. BoldChat has a self-service model, but also has a team of people behind the scenes if you raise your hand and need their attention. And their tools are extremely competitive regardless of price.”
Once live chat was up and running, one of the immediate benefits was cost savings, according to iS3 Chief Operating Officer Rick Trefzger. “We’ve seen tremendous cost-saving benefits from adding live chat to our support mix,” said Trefzger. “With the right training, our nimble customer service team is able to manage a large volume of chat inquiries and since implementing BoldChat, we’ve reduced our live chat costs by 50 percent.”
While many website owners implement live chat thinking of it as a sales OR service offering, it offers benefits on both sides. Abt Electronics had this experience. Although it was initially added to the website as a way to enhance Abt.com’s customer service offering, the role of live chat has expanded significantly and is now seen as much a sales tool as a support tool. The company has added live chat to every page of the website – in multiple places on the page. “Now we have more than 50 operators available, handling up to five chats at one time, respond to customers’ incoming chats as quickly as possible,” said Abt Electronics Co-President Jon Abt. “Over time, live chat has definitely decreased our call volume.”
Live chat became a part of CableOrganizer.com’s strategy for combating the recession. CableOrganizer.com was founded in 2002 with a $30 investment. Now, CableOrganizer’s business has grown to include a huge variety of cable, wire and products to manage electrical equipment. Selling 42,000 products online, the company has grown by double-digit percentages every year and reported $14 million in revenue in 2009. “Our business grew last year, but the industry as a whole shrunk,” said Juan Ribero, Director of Sales, CableOrganizer.com. “When our competitors stopped spending in fear of a recession, we continued innovating and investing. Live chat and our use of BoldChat is part of that.”
Additionally, live chat provider e-tailers with a lot more information, enabling them to get to know their customers and their on-site activity. With 200,000 products available on ReStockIt, customers are bound to have questions while they shop the site. “BoldChat is great because we know exactly what page the person is viewing and we can give them an answer while they stay on that page,” stated ReStockIt Customer Service Manager Adam Flam. “The customer gets what they need and then moves on.” In addition to the current URL, BoldChat’s visitor monitoring tools provide ReStockIt’s customer service representatives with access to real-time data including geographic information, whether the person has visited the site before, how long they’ve been at this page and more.
Live chat has become something leading e-tailers rely on to win and keep customers. “We’ve definitely benefitted as a result of implementing live chat on our website four years ago,” says Osher Karnowsky, general manager at Jomashop.com. “Once a customer shops with us and understands how well we know the products and how well we price them, we get a lot of repeat business. Live chat enables us to really enhance that customer shopping experience, and we’ve seen increased customer satisfaction, a higher rate of conversions, and higher value orders as a result. For me, live chat is a ‘must have’ these days, not just a ‘nice to have’.”
Bold Software has deep experience working with customers ranked on the Internet Retailer 500 list. Of all Internet Retailer 500 companies using live chat technology, 10 percent are Bold Software customers.
Bold Software will be at Booth #605 at the Internet Retailer Conference and Exposition from June 8-11, 2010.
About Bold Software:
Bold Software LLC, is a leading provider of world-class web communication tools designed to help businesses improve online support and increase sales. Using Bold Software’s live chat, click-to-call, email management, and active co-browsing tools, businesses can quickly and effectively engage visitors on their website. Bold Software sells a wide variety of competitively-priced products under the BoldChat, BoldCall, and BoldCCM brand names. Businesses of all sizes - from small proprietorships to large ecommerce enterprises – can provide more intelligent online customer interactions and close more sales using Bold Software solutions. The company is headquartered in Wichita, KS, with thousands of customers around the world including 3M, American Cancer Society, Corel, Dean & DeLuca, and ViewSonic. For more information about Bold Software, go to http://www.BoldSoft.com or call 1-866-753-9933.