How to Add a Personal Touch to Your Live Chat Support

We, as human, all have the need to be acknowledged. As an online retailer, one of the best questions you should ask yourself is how you are going to fulfill that psychological need when interacting with customers. The answer, I dare say, is adding a personal touch to your live chat support.

Experiencing personalized service makes people feel extra validated and appreciated. This places a huge impact on turning random visitors into paying clients and even loyal ambassadors for your brand.

To achieve this competitive edge in live chat support, here are 6 best tactics a highly effective chat agent should employ in every of their customer service interactions.

1. Exchange name

How to Add a Personal Touch to Your Live Chat Support
No one likes talking to a wall. Still, some brands make their customers feel like they are talking to a logo (soulless and robotic), not some customer representative (human with sympathy). In live chat support, the high road to building trust and rapport is to make the conversation more personal.

Let’s drop any overly-rigid etiquette like “we” and “you” and start introducing yourself as well as address visitors by their name. This helps to break the ice and kick off a chat session with friendly atmosphere. Chat agent can get a visitor’s name through pre-chat survey and should address them personally during the conversation, not only at their first landing.

2. Suggest personalized items

How to Add a Personal Touch to Your Live Chat Support
Every customer has unique demands that need to be specially attended to. It’s no doubt crucial that chat agents address every prospect in a personalized manner, based on their preference and background.

Visitor’s information as their city, IP, web path, web browser, etc can be monitored to put them into different targeted segments. Chat agents can also keep track of customer’s activities on site (the products they view, their time on site, etc) to approach them with the most suitable offers or products.

3. Engage in a little “table-talk”

How to Add a Personal Touch to Your Live Chat Support
Tired of talking business all day long? I bet we all do. A little small talk about the weather or Friday night plan would be a good start before jumping onto any serious conversation. Especially when both parties get a bit intense with complaints and disputes, it’s advisable to uplift the atmosphere with some lighter conversation.

Whatever small talk chat agents may employ, it’s important that they show sympathy to their customers. A father with a broken television would be less aggressive if the customer rep give him some concerns about his kids who are sulking for no Disney channel at home. After all, customers need to know that the service staff is on their side.

But don’t get too carried away with those chit-chats. Some customers just love throwing out their daily trivial gripes; and before you know it, the topic has strayed too far from your service.

4. Talk like your customers

How to Add a Personal Touch to Your Live Chat Support
They call this mirror and matching. It’s the well-known psychology technique to build a rapid, positive bond between two parties. All one needs to do is observe the other’s behaviour and mirror that manner into their own actions. The idea is that, if you act similar to the person you are talking to, they are more likely to trust and feel comfortable around you.

Whenever you, as chat agent, find it hard to figure out an appropriate tone for each chat session, just watch how the clients are talking to you. If they are being casual, you go casual. If they are acting formal, you do formal. Addressing some casual greeting like “Knock knock, anyone over there?” with a overly-formal answer as “How can I attend to your needs, sir?” is not a good idea.

This, however, doesn’t mean that you can act informal all you like. Being a little funny is good, but don’t go too casual. You can risk being unprofessional.

5. Make customers feel like a VIP

How to Add a Personal Touch to Your Live Chat Support
People all need to feel valued and treasured. There is no better way to nourish loyal customers than showing them how important they are to your business. In live chat support, the smallest yet most impactful thing you can do is never make customers wait long hours in the line.

Rapid response time gains more satisfied clients as it shows that you are putting your full effort in tending to their needs. Meanwhile, long response time makes people experience the negative feeling of being put aside while you are busy taking care of some other VIP.

Being multi-tasked is good, but if you cannot guarantee the speed, just cut down the number of your concurrent chats. Quality is more appreciated than quantity in this case.

6. Be thankful

How to Add a Personal Touch to Your Live Chat Support
A highly effective chat operator doesn’t just end a chat conversation with a heap of solutions or information. They thank their customers for using their product/service and apologize for any inconvenience the issue may cause.

Showing respect and appreciation is the key to leaving a memorable customer experience. The interaction turns out more positive and customers are more willing to share their personal story about your brand with others. Think of the word-of-mouth effect it can bring, and I bet you would consider applying the motto “say-thank-you-no-matter-what” to all of your live chat staff.

According to Buffer, personal touch is one of the three most important psychological needs customers have when interacting with a brand. Tackling this aspect the right way in live chat support would give your eCommerce business an upper hand when competing with other rivals.

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