A recent interaction with Amazon Customer Service gave the following insights:
It is very difficult to get to a live person at Amazon. Amazon encourages customers to help themselves to an answer and is very persistent in this approach. However, it has all the technology and the information workflows to enable this.
Once you get to a service representative the experience is very good.
You are kept informed about the status of your Live Chat Support and how long it will take to connect.
On connecting with the representative you encounter high levels of service.
The representative has full access to your account is mature and confident and can spot your issue quickly. The representative is empowered to take decisions and to communicate these to you.
My experience was flawless and the representative made sure that my issues were resolved.
While Live Chat Support is seemingly a quicker way to resolve issues if may not always be true.
With such a large range of customer enquiries it is difficult to create a knowledge base that can support every query.
And if there is a customer problem that requires investigation, web chat will not be able to resolve this.
Organizations that deploy web chat especially for ecommerce and online business should do so with care, planning and by making the right investments in technology.
You can outsource your live Web Chat Customer Service but remember not to only go by costs. It is better to request your outsourcing partner to hire well-qualified, trained mature team members who have domain and industry experience.
Web Chat can cost more than processes like Email Response, Management and call center processes.
Hire good quality, mature representatives with domain and industry knowledge.
Use the appropriate technology to enable the representative and the customer interact smoothly
Have a good knowledge management that will host information & answers
Have clear guidelines & escalation processes combined with adequate empowerment of frontline staff.
International companies can also outsource and consolidate their live web chat support to third parties like Kankei.