Technical support – well, it’s technical. Meaning, it often involves helping customers with complex problems. For this reason, phone support has been the preferred method for assisting customers remotely.
Live chat, however, is increasingly becoming the support method of choice, for both customers and companies. It’s less expensive, customers don’t have to wait in long phone queues, and reps can assist multiple people at one time.
If you run a technical support unit, then, you may be thinking – “can I still use live chat, even if we’re helping customers solve complex problems?”
The answer? Yes. Definitely. Read below for tips on how to maximize live chat when helping customers with technical support questions.
Tip #1: It’s okay to ask questions for clarification
Live chat is not like a normal phone conversation. Instead of long explanations, people default to short snippets of text, and you can’t rely on intonations in the customer’s voice to help you understand context. Because of this limitation, it’s imperative to let your live chat reps know that they can and should ask plenty of clarifying questions. Train them to ask questions that are precise and simple, so that they can guide the customer to the actual issue. You can even sit down with your team to formulate questions that will help diagnose common problems.
Tip #2: Avoid jargon
“Use WebHooks or use the REST API and just frictionlessly integrate the app …”
Say what? If your customer service reps rely on jargon in their explanations, kindly train them to use language that’s more accessible to the masses. A good rule of thumb is to match the language to the customer. So if a customer is knowledgeable in jargon terms, and asks questions using esoteric language, then it’s perfectly acceptable for the live chat rep to respond using jargon that matches the customer’s level of expertise. Keep in mind that live chat is a medium that can easily “get lost in translation,” so make sure your reps are as precise and clear as possible in the language they use.
Tip #3: Visuals are your friend
For technical diagnoses, the ability to see the problem is paramount – and with live chat, you can link these features. Equip your team with remote desktop tools that allow your team to visually see the customer’s screen to the rep’s desktop. With the visual and the ability to simultaneously chat, talking through problems becomes much simpler. A picture, as they say, is worth a thousand words.
Tip #4: Make the experience personal
Just because your reps are “virtually” helping, doesn’t mean that they can’t make the experience more personal. Have them include a photo of themselves in their live chat box (not just an avatar), make sure they use their real name, and train them to use the customer’s name and be polite through every point of the interaction with the customer.
Live chat is a great technical service tool – with the right training!
As with all technology tools, training is key. Even with the best live chat system installed, if your reps don’t know how to properly assist the customers, or if they don’t know how to communicate the solution via a live chat format, your customers will end up losing – and chances are – they’ll search for a company that can help them. Invest in training along with your live chat tools, and you’ll be able to enjoy a robust technical support platform that pleases your customers and that your agents will enjoy using.