How Live Chat Improves B2B Conversion Rates

Written by Kathy Kassera Mrozek

When’s the last time you used a chat service? Whether you used Facebook, Hangouts, Slack, or a text message, you’ve probably chatted with someone today. This form of communication has become a standard part of our lives since its introduction in the ’90s and now it’s embedded itself in the marketing world.

For example, you’ve probably used chat to ask a quick question about a product or to contact customer service. It’s a great tool for quickly resolving issues keeping clients happy. But, can it be useful to B2B companies, where buyers are more sophisticated and the sales cycle takes longer?

Five reasons to test live chat as a way to increase business to business conversions

1. It’s affordable and can reduce your costs

You might assume that testing a new B2B marketing channel is expensive or time-consuming. But, that’s not the case with live chat. Many services allow you to start for free or at a very low monthly fee. Depending on your volume of site visitors, this might be a viable option for your company.

How can live chat help you reduce costs? A study by Forrester Research showed that live chat is 17-30% cheaper than traditional phone support. Due to the flexibility of live chat, employees are able to assist multiple clients at once, which increases productivity and can reduce your total support staff.

2. It has a potential ROI of 300%

How would a 20% increase in your conversion rate affect your bottom line? Achieving this type of increase quickly might sound like a dream. But, a report from the American Marketing Institute showed that live chat can increase your site conversion rate by 20% and have an overall ROI of 300% over the course of 6 months. The report further details how far-reaching the effects of live chat can be since it can apply to almost any sales funnel or buyer’s journey phase. This makes it a good option to handle awareness stage questions, close deals, or provide post-sales support.

3. It increases customer loyalty

Customer loyalty becomes more important as the size of your sales increase. By incorporating live chat, you can increase the loyalty of your customers and their overall satisfaction with your product or service. One user research study from Oracle found that 90% of users found a live chat button reassuring since it showed that the they could get answers to their questions quickly.

Another study found that live chat produced higher levels of customer service satisfaction than email or phone calls. This shows the clear value in testing live chat as a way to improve customer loyalty and show that your brand cares.

4. It’s flexible and can match your business hours

Many hear the term “live chat” and think that it’s a 24/7 thing. But, that’s not the case. It’s only live when someone is manning it. This means that you can have live chat active only when there’s someone available to deal with incoming messages. Chatbots can also be set up for decision tree interactions for greater user engagement without a live person from your team involved in every chat. You can also set up most live chat services to keep messages queued until someone does become available. Either of these options will allow your company to keep engaging users and collecting leads from your chat system after hours.

5. It shows you’re a tech savvy company

In competitive industries it can be tough to keep your edge. By incorporating live chat into your site, you show customers that you understand technology and strive to stay at the forefront. It’s also a way to show your desire to provide the best service possible using whatever method your customers prefer. This can set you apart from competitors that aren’t willing to adapt to the digital landscape.

Want to test live chat?

If you’re interested in trying live chat on your site, then start with a respected provider like Intercom, Freshchat, or Drift. Most have a free or affordable option that you can start testing out on your site.

As you implement live chat, remember that the goal is to make the customer’s journey easier. To make sure you achieve this goal, you need to take the time to properly train your team. Get your b2b sales and customer service teams ready to respond to any incoming messages and show them the best ways handle common situations. This might include creating an extensive FAQ or increasing the size of your knowledge base.

Some solutions, such as Drift, also let you add custom workflows for when your team isn’t online. These workflows can take site visitors through some of the most common issues they might need help with. Based on how a visitor answers the bot’s questions, they may be placed into a sales cycle or have a ticket opened to help resolve their request. These advanced ways of using live chat are valuable since they automate parts of your online marketing, which frees up your time.

Live chat can increase your conversion rate, customer satisfaction, and even provide a 300% ROI. If you want a new way to increase your site’s conversion, live chat could be the answer. Try testing a few different options to see which one is the right fit for your business, your team and your target market. If you’d like help implementing live chat on your website, then contact us.

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