Chat Routing 101: Live Chat Workflows That Work

With these three live help process tools, you can design the ideal workflow for your team and get your customers the answers they need faster than ever before.

Gone are the days of simplistic customer service flowcharts, splitting off direct inquiries to either the Sales or Service department. Today’s leading live chat platforms are set up to meet the unique needs of your organization, routing chats based on any criteria you can imagine.

Not sure where to start? With these three live help process tools, you can design the ideal workflow for your team and get your customers the answers they need faster than ever before.

Defining Customer Groups

Thanks to state-of-the-art visitor monitoring technology, today’s live chat agents have a full picture of every website visitor at their fingertips—survey answers, chat history, geolocation, and more. Take this intel to the next level by defining rules that assign visitors to a particular customer group, either upon visiting a certain webpage, after submitting a chat request, or something else entirely. And with behavior-based rules, if customers’ habits change, their group changes, too, giving agents an automatically updated and instant snapshot of every website visitor – including what they’ve viewed, how they got to your site and what they’ve chatted about before. With smart customer group segmentation, your agents will know the answer before the customer even asks the question.

Setting Up Agent Tiers

Likewise, you can organize your agents by setting up customer service tiers to control the flow of chats to different reps or groups of reps. Exceptional live chat platforms allow you to define several different levels for distributing users. Basic question? Send it to a Tier 1 agent. Complex issue? You probably want Tier 3 to troubleshoot. Tiers facilitate skill-based routing to get the right chat to the right agent, and serve as overflow valves to keep up when agents are unavailable. Whether you’re auto-routing traffic in certain areas to a specific group of agents or visitors have the power to choose, you can easily set up your live chat workflow to mirror your organization’s layout.

Routing Chats Effectively

With the appropriate groups and tiers in place, you can easily setup workflows that work optimally for your organization. Auto-routing chats efficiently distributes requests to agents based on easily defined rules and algorithms. Alternatively, queueing chats allows agents to manually accept engagement requests, maximizing their flexibility and control.

Further streamline your workflows by investing in a live chat platform that makes it easy for agents to stay nimble and use their time wisely. For example, automatic workflows are great, except when the agent to “pick up” the chat isn’t the right one to finish it. Look for live help software that allows you to manually and automatically transfer chats to a specific agent or anyone in a pre-defined group of agents (Tier 2 support reps, for instance). And for chats that have gone dormant, you’ll want a platform that will automatically close the chat window and offer customized warnings before it happens. Now that’s efficient service – for customers and agents alike.

Learn more about Velaro’s workflow tools and other industry-leading features that allow you to Make Every Chat Better Than the Last.™

If you’re interested in seeing a demo of Velaro click here.

Delivering Customer Service on Social Media the Right Way

When social media users spend 21% more after experiencing excellent customer service, you can’t afford to do it wrong.

When social media users spend 21% more after experiencing excellent customer service, you can’t afford to do it wrong.

While social media has opened up countless new opportunities for companies and customers to communicate, maintaining these progressively more intense and quick-fire interactions has become increasingly difficult, costly, and often confusing.

Developing professional responses and doing so both swiftly and publicly is a balancing act even the most well-known companies have failed to consistently sustain. According to think tank thinkJar, more than half of all customer service requests on social media aren’t even acknowledged.

But there is a way to simplify and improve the customer service experience on social media. Leveraging live chat within your social media platforms can enhance dialogue between customers and your brand, speed issue resolution and provide valuable customer insights. Here are three ways live chat can elevate your social media customer service.

Give Immediate, Individualized Attention

Customers expect companies to provide instantaneous service via social media platforms. It’s an expectation that is generally hard to live up to unless constantly monitored. Fair or not, a speedy response is vital. By directing customers to a live chat option within social media platforms, companies have the opportunity to provide individualized customer support while reducing negative sentiment and taking the conversation out of the public eye.

Create an Omnichannel Experience

You never know how a customer will decide to reach out or where their last interaction took place. Integrating live chat and social media ensures customers experience your brand as a seamless, single entity, and that all inquiries, service tickets and company responses are centralized and consistent. This practice simplifies the process of tracking, escalating and rectifying a customer’s inquiry, and saves time, effort and staffing demands.

Use Social Media for Customer Insights

The best enterprise live chat solutions don’t just offer a button to drop on your social media page. They provide customer service representatives with instant access to essential customer social media data, even when the inquiry didn’t come through social media. By better understanding your customers, your company is not only better able to address issues, but upsell, cross-sell and provide an exceptional experience.

Want to simplify and speed your social media response time with enterprise live chat? Read the white paper 7 Tips for Selecting the Right Live Chat Vendor and learn what to look for. If you’re ready to try Velaro for yourself click here to get started with a free trial.

3 Secrets to Effective Customer Engagement

Shorter wait times, a boost in sales, a drop in operational costs.Velaro Sales Conversion Tracking These are some of the most common goals for a live chat program. However, in its most basic terms, live chat is also an opportunity to establish a personal connection with your customer.

Although its impact may be difficult to quantify, customer engagement is a key component of establishing trust, converting a customer, and ultimately cultivating brand loyalty.
How can you kindle that personal connection so it has a lasting effect long after the chat window has closed? Here are five tools for increasing engagement during live chat sessions.

Social Integration and Surveys

Critical to conducting an engaging live chat session is the ability to create meaningful conversation with your customer. But when it comes to chat, there is also an expectation for speed. How can you gain insights about a user and their problem without a time-consuming back-and-forth exchange?

Integrating your live chat software with your company’s social media channels allows you to automatically pull in your customers’ available social data. This not only aids your agents in conducting research and tailoring their service but also saves the user time, as login and identity data are auto-populated from Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+. As a supplement or alternative, many companies provide a brief pre-chat survey for customers to fill in identifying information and to categorize their issue, so they can be served as quickly and effectively as possible.

Proactive Chat

Used strategically, proactive chat is another effective way to thoughtfully engage with customers. Armed with your platform’s rules-engine triggers and insights on visitor behavior, you can craft messages that are opportunely timed as well as compelling. For example, you gain the ability to reach out to a user who has spent an inordinate amount of time on a complex product webpage, as you would a customer meandering around your store with a perplexed expression.

Worried that your customers don’t want to be bothered? Think again. Research has shown that proactive chatters are actually six times more likely to buy than an average website visitor.

File Transferring and Push Pages

While live chat is an excellent medium for real-time troubleshooting and product detailing, there will inevitably be instances when reference material or leave-behind resources are necessary and useful.

Look into activating your live chat software’s file transfer feature so that screenshots, troubleshooting guides and product catalogs can all be securely shared without interrupting your session. Or, if you would like to walk a customer through a page on your website, use the push page feature to present a direct link to the user in the live chat window. By using these tools wisely, you can ensure that customers have the resources they need during the chat session and beyond.

Ready to achieve superior results by using live chat as part of customer interactions? Download our white paper, “Live Chat: The Gift That Keeps On Giving.”

5 Security Must-Haves for Financial Services Live Chat

Recent headlines have made it clear that data breaches can happen, and don’t happen quietly. Don’t put your customers or your company at risk with vulnerable live chat.

Recent headlines have made it clear that data breaches can happen, and don’t happen quietly. Don’t put your customers or your company at risk with vulnerable live chat.

When handling sensitive client information in live chat sessions, it’s important you trust your platform’s security, so your customers can trust you. Here are five important considerations for secure live chat in the financial services industry.

Chat security

The average live chat lasts about 16 minutes, but it can take just a moment for an unauthorized user or malicious content to do significant damage. Look for a live chat platform that uses secure socket layer (SSL) technology to employ server authentication and data encryption, so your data is safe and available to your organization’s registered users only. Content should also be monitored using enterprise-grade firewalls, intrusion detection systems and application content filters, with shared files being scanned using up-to-date anti-virus software.

Agent authorization

Authenticating your live chat agents is an important component of protecting your customer information. At a minimum, you’ll want a chat platform that provides granular role-based security options, so that account users can be designated as site administrator, department manager, or agent, granting varying levels of access. Exceptional live chat platforms also provide customizable agent settings, allowing you to mask credit card numbers in chat sessions, enable IP-based login restrictions or disable agents form emailing transcripts, among other heightened security measures.

Audit control

To maintain compliance with the financial services industry’s numerous certifications and standards, your live chat platform must maintain a complete audit trail. All changes to your account, including those made on the administrative side as well as by agents, should be recorded and available for review by your administrators. Leading live chat software also allows audit trail reports to be scheduled and automatically emailed to your team in a variety of formats on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.

Privacy and cookies

Your company’s privacy policies are an essential part of the trust you share with your customers. Be sure your live chat service provider has a commitment to never sell, rent or lease any client information to third parties. If cookies are used, ensure that sensitive information is not stored and that cookies are only saved for the duration of the visitor’s session whenever possible, to limit security vulnerability.

Data storage and encryption

Live chat happens in real time, but that data lives on. Look for a live chat platform that uses enterprise quality storage devices that are exclusively accessible through encrypted communication paths. User identity information should accompany every request to the live chat server to maintain complete segregation and privacy of customer data. Looking for even more peace of mind? Choose a live chat solution that allows you to pre-encrypt all chat conversations prior to permanent server storage using a private encryption key to which only your organization has access.

Get the industry-specific functionality you need, backed by the best live chat security in the business: learn more about our Financial Services Live Chat Solutions.

How to Succeed with Omnichannel Customer Service

Velaro PlatformsWhen today’s customers require support, they don’t think in terms of channels. They reach out to your company through whatever means is most convenient or comfortable for them – social, email, chat, phone – and expect that no matter their choice, they will receive swift attention.

However, there can be challenges standing between meeting omnichannel customer service expectations and operational realities. To ensure you are providing consistently exceptional customer service across all channels, consider these rules of the road.

Only advertise what you can deliver.

Given the ubiquity of smartphones, the demand for live, instantaneous support is on the rise. And while it would be great to be able to offer customer service across social, chat, phone and everywhere in between, first it is critical that your customer service department is prepared to keep up.

If your presence in an emerging channel isn’t fully baked yet, hold off on advertising its availability. Customers are not looking to reach out via social media only to be told to call your call center. Instead, think about how you can branch out into new channels by leveraging existing resources like adding live chat capabilities to your social media platform and cross-training your agents.

Be consistent across platforms.

The best way to ensure a consistent user experience is to equip agents across all channels with rich customer records and up-to-the-minute intelligence. To accomplish this, many companies choose to integrate their live chat and other platforms into their customer relationship management (CRM) system. This allows agents to append live chat transcripts, metadata and survey results onto a user record, so if a customer gets transferred to another channel or is later engaged, the next agent can quickly grasp the context of the last interaction, saving the customer time – and frustration.

Help customers help themselves.

One channel that is sometimes overlooked in the customer service mix is a self-service option, in the form of a searchable FAQ or knowledgebase. The beauty of creating a repository like this that it empowers customers to find answers on their own, gives agents a place to direct customers for further information, and means canned messages with particular triggers can offer richer, more informative messages that include references to FAQs. All of which contribute to more efficient service delivery and happier customers.

Creating and maintaining a knowledgebase does require a concerted effort, but by integrating it into your customer service operations, the investment can pay off daily in both time and costs saved.

Ready to fold live chat into your omnichannel customer service department? Learn how Magellan GPS halved customer support operating expenses by doing just that – read the case study.