Customer Happiness Report

october 2014
01

Introduction

This report was created to provide a customer service analysis and benchmark for businesses operating online. Any company with online sales or support can use this report to improve their customer service.

Year after year, live chat is becoming an increasingly important part of the customer service puzzle. By offering a live chat feature on your website, you can provide near instant communication that is more efficient than phone or email.

With hundreds of thousands of customer service chats conducted each month, it can be hard to keep up with the latest customer satisfaction trends. Over the course of this report, we will show which practices should be adopted or what can be improved.

This is the second edition of the Customer Happiness Report. However, it’s not simply an update to the 2012 version. We added a few interesting metrics and provided an analysis on what changed over the past two years.

02

Data

Customers using LiveChat to contact a company have the option to rate their experience. They can give it either a ‘thumbs up’ or ‘thumbs down’. This valuable piece of information can be used to gauge the effectiveness of the provided service.

3K

companies

14M

chats

3

months

We gathered the data regarding these rates and all contributing factors over a three month period. More than 3,300 companies took part in the research. The data covers well over 14 million chats.

To make sure that the presented results are clear, we applied a few rules to the data we gathered:

  • We used only the data from companies with established live chat implementations. Businesses testing live chat were not included in our calculations.
  • To increase the reliability of the data, we excluded businesses that had less than 100 chats with customers each month.
  • When it comes to the data related to industries, we merged similar industries together, e.g. Forex and Binary options into Finance.
  • The applied methodology ensures that the data comes from genuine, established business that use live chat on a daily and consistent basis.
03

Main Findings

We checked four main customer service metrics for all participating businesses. Let’s take a look at the global results before delving deeper into more detailed results.

Average customer satisfaction

87,05%

Up from 85,6% when compared to our previous report

It tells you how much of the rated chats are rated positive. The most important metric which represents the final effect of your customer service efforts. A rise in this category shows that companies are paying more attention to customer service and are getting better at it.

Average number of chats

1460

Up by 49% since 2012

Average number of chats – the average number of conversations a company gets over the course of one month. This shows how often chat is used by customers as a contact option. An increase in this category comes from, for the most part, the regulations we imposed when choosing businesses for the study.

Average first response time

1:03

Faster by 7 seconds than in the last report

Average first response time – how long on average a customer has to wait to get an answer in a new chat. The amount of time it takes for an agent to reply in a new chat. These few seconds may seem like a small gain but they really add up to huge numbers over time. The fastest companies are able to cut their first response time almost by a half, dipping below the 30 seconds mark. This shows that there is still much room for improvement.

Average chat length

16:15

2 minutes and 5 seconds longer than in 2012

Average chat length – the average time it takes for an agent to finish a conversation with a customer. How long an average chat lasts. An increase in this category could be attributed to the way customers use live chat. Visitors can ask questions on various pages during their stay on a website – they don’t have to ask all the questions immediately. This is much more comfortable than phone, where you get all the information at once and you need to call again if another problem pops up.

04

Key Metrics Review

When looking at customer satisfaction data, there are four key metrics that can provide a solid basis for further analysis.

We prepared a short review of how this metrics are distributed when we take a look at specific countries, industries, audiences, company sizes and chat purposes.

Country

The report data includes satisfaction statistics from all over the globe. It encompasses 89 countries, big and small, from all continents.

Please note that very high or very low customer satisfaction scores can be a result of a relatively small sample. Generally, the more data from a particular country we have, the more precise the findings will be.

To make our conclusions more data-oriented, we decided to discuss only the companies that made the one percent mark, which equals to around 30 business from that particular country.

Here’s the detailed data about these countries:

Country
Avg # of Chats
Chat length
first response time
Percent of all companies
Satisfaction
United States
39
13m 27s
1m 5s
33,36%
90,24%
United Kingdom
25
13m 5s
1m 28s
8,13%
82,99%
Australia
55
12m 13s
1m
6,15%
92,16%
Indonesia
89
15m 20s
59s
5,46%
87,83%
Poland
35
13m 26s
1m 26s
3,81%
89,28%
Canada
16
13m 13s
1m 29s
3,48%
86,54%
Brazil
45
15m 9s
1m 6s
3,08%
88,36%
India
70
12m 59s
58s
2,98%
72,76%
Cambodia
73
13m 51s
38s
2,86%
87,59%
Turkey
54
11m 33s
1m 3s
2,47%
69,17%
Mexico
68
14m 39s
1m 18s
1,89%
89,90%
Netherlands
21
13m 59s
1m 17s
1,72%
93,01%
China
60
19m 2s
1m 21s
1,39%
79,42%
Vietnam
83
16m 37s
48s
1,29%
84,41%
Malaysia
186
14m 9s
35s
1,24%
88,95%
Thailand
77
16m 5s
1m 7s
1,11%
93,15%

A sizable group of companies from United States (almost a third of companies) opens up the list. Customer satisfaction result of 90,24 percent places United States well ahead of the curve, especially considering the size of the represented group.

Australia is another well-performing country with an even higher customer satisfaction score of 92,16 percent. It’s worth noting that the companies from Down Under managed to shave off some of their response time (when considering the 2012 data) and went just below the average response time, which could explain the increased satisfaction score.

Companies from the Netherlands are another group of top-performers with their 93,01 percent satisfaction score. What’s interesting about these businesses is the lower than average number of chats handled each day. This can suggest that it is easier to provide better customer service when agents can focus on a smaller number of cases at a time.

Thailand is an example of a country with longer chats and good satisfaction scores. With an average chat lasting just over 16 minutes, it looks like support agents working for Thai companies handle the chats more carefully.

Top performing countries
90%
93,15%
93,01%
92,16%
90,24%
Thailand
Netherlands
Australia
United States

Other countries with a decent representation and good satisfaction scores include Poland (89,28% satisfaction), Brazil (88,36% satisfaction), Mexico (89,90% satisfaction) and Malaysia (88,95% satisfaction).

The second most-represented country, the United Kingdom, scored below average customer satisfaction results. The rather long first response time could be a part of the problem. Customer contacting the support of a UK-based company can expect to wait nearly half a minute longer than the global average of one minute and three seconds.

Companies from India and Turkey scored relatively low in customer satisfaction marks (72,76 percent and 69,17 percent respectively) despite having pretty decent first response times. The low average chat length (3-4 minutes lower than the global average) could suggest that chats are conducted in a hasty, quantity-oriented manner, resulting in poorer customer satisfaction scores.

Some of the fastest chat agents come from Cambodia (38 seconds first response time), Vietnam (48 seconds) and Malaysia (35 seconds). Short response time seems to be a common practice in Asian countries since the average satisfaction doesn’t go up when the first response time is faster.

The fastest countries
30s
35s
38s
48s
59s
MALAYSIA
CAMBODIA
VIETNAM
INDONESIA
Industry

Each business taking part in this research was assigned to one of the industry categories. We wanted to strike a certain balance between precision of the groups and their scope.

The categories you can see below are specific enough to provide valuable information for companies from a given sector and, at the same time, they are also broad enough to include a larger, more representative group of companies.

Automotive
Companies that sell, repair or rent cars fall into this category. A car dealership or used car parts shop are examples of such companies.
Education
All manner of institutions, organizations and companies dealing with learning. Institutions in this group can range from e-learning courses providers to universities.
Entertainment
Businesses that provide entrainment as a service. A performer, a band, baseball ticket service or even a paintball course rental belong to this category.
Finance
People and businesses operating in the finance sector, either by actively trading or by providing trading solutions. A Forex trading platform or a stock exchange bureau are examples of Finance companies.
Games & Gambling
These companies sell games, provide game-related services and also offer online gambling services to customers. Online casino, bookmaker or games shop fall into this group.
Government / Non-profit
Administrative institutions and non-profit organizations using chat. Government agencies, religious institutions, and charities fall into this category.
Healthcare
All health-related business, medical institutions and also fitness academies are assigned to this category. Clinics, hospitals, spas and pharmacies are examples of healthcare companies.
Human Resources
Services helping other companies find, recruit and train employees. A head-hunting agency fits perfectly into this category.
IT
Companies offering services and products in the wide IT sector. This can be a web development agency, a hosting maintenance company but also a consultancy company offering IT courses.
Manufacturing
Companies that produce their product but don’t offer their wares directly to consumers. This can be a pipe manufacturer or a lab equipment producer.
Marketing
Businesses which help other companies thrive and be competitive on domestic and international markets. Creative or advertising agencies are great examples of marketing companies.
Media & Telecom
Companies offering TV, Internet and telecommunication services. Mobile carriers or cable TV providers belong in this group.
Professional Services
All kinds of services offering a very precise set of skills that can be sued in a particular field. Professional writers, carpenters and contractors are examples of a professional service.
Real Estate
Companies with expert knowledge on buying and selling properties.
Retail
A great number of shops running with an online offer of their goods. These companies sell anything from clothes and office furniture to electronics and agriculture equipment.
Software
Businesses that produce and sell software online. This can be both standalone solutions as well as SaaS products.
Support Services
Companies specializing in helping other businesses. This can be a call center or any other support outsourcing company handling the customer service of their customers.
Travel
Companies directly related to traveling, e.g. booking companies and hotels but also all tourism-related businesses like bars.
Web Apps
Software developers and companies that operate solely in the web. A SaaS help desk can be an example of such company.
Web Hosting
Companies offering hosting solutions for other businesses to host their websites.
Wholesale
Businesses selling products at a wholesale price to shops and other businesses. They don’t deal directly with consumers.
Other
Businesses that either didn’t fit in any category or didn’t warrant a category of their own due to their small data representation.

All in all, we’ve prepared 22 distinct categories. Here’s the satisfaction data for them:

Industry
Avg # of chats
Chat length
First response time
Percentage of all companies
Satisfaction
Automotive
8
17m 14s
1m 16s
0,64%
69,38%
Education
21
15m 28s
1m 11s
6,70%
88,08%
Entertainment
82
12m 15s
49s
8,47%
86,50%
Finance
36
14m 57s
1m
6,51%
84,70%
Games & Gambling
57
10m 46s
39s
0,73%
90,93%
Government / NPO
12
13m 37s
1m 23s
0,86%
85,40%
Healthcare
35
11m 5s
1m 1s
4,56%
88,66%
Human Resources
29
9m 45s
1m 4s
0,64%
85,97%
IT
41
16m 55s
1m 2s
7,25%
89,48%
Manufacturing
11
18m 51s
1m 44s
4,10%
85,91%
Marketing
80
12m 42s
2m 13s
4,20%
71,05%
Media & Telecom
110
11m 7s
55s
3,07%
93,48%
Other
21
16m 15s
49s
5,53%
85,51%
Professional Services
22
13m 38s
1m 17s
4,95%
75,04%
Real Estate
12
12m 23s
1m 12s
1,99%
79,47%
Retail
60
11m 39s
1m 5s
20,19%
86,21%
Software
30
15m 40s
1m 10s
4,85%
80,79%
Support Services
41
14m 35s
41s
3,87%
81,61%
Travel
34
13m 4s
1m 24s
6,23%
80,43%
Web Apps
55
10m 45s
55s
2,26%
74,13%
Web Hosting
25
24m 41s
1m 30s
2,24%
88,40%
Wholesale
12
22m 23s
1m 57s
0,18%
87,50%

Every fifth company taking part in this study is related to retail in some way. Live chat is a natural pick for every online retailer as it allows for quick contact with customers who visit the said retailer’s website.

The title of “Industry with the best customer service” goes to the Media & Telecom companies. They are able to provide high quality service (an amazing satisfaction score of 93,48 percent) while operating fairly large implementations, as the average number of chats suggests (~110). Companies from this sector, e.g. mobile services providers, often have professional customer service teams dedicated to online support.

The success of implementations in the Media & Telecom sector is evident when we take a look at the faster than average response and resolution time of those companies as well as their outstanding customer satisfaction scores.

Tech-related sectors of IT and Web Hosting are the next top performing industries. The IT industry, which is the third biggest group, got an above average rating of 89,48 percent. When it comes to Web Hosting, it’s quite far down the list of most popular industries (just 2,24 percent of all companies). The long average chat length in this industry, coupled with good satisfaction results, suggests that requests handled by web hosting companies are more complex and require more time to solve.

Top performing industries
85%
93,48%
90,93%
89,48%
88,66%
MEDIA & TELECOM
GAMES & GAMBLING
IT
HEALTHCARE

Outsourcing companies from the Support Services sector managed to reach very fast response time of 40 seconds. Only two other industries managed to get better results (Games & Gambling, Sports), however, both these groups are very small and their results could be skewed by a few well-performing live chat implementations.

As for the underperforming industries, the Marketing sector noted a very long average response time of 4 minutes 12 seconds. This resulted in a poor customer satisfaction rating of 71,05 percent.

The Web App companies also scored a low 74,13 percent satisfaction rating. What’s interesting, is the fact that the companies in this sector noted above average response and resolution times. This could indicate that despite utilizing some good practices regarding the speed of response, these companies still have to work on the overall efficiency of their support to get more positive ratings.

The opposite can be seen when we take a look at the Manufacturing industry. Despite lower than average resolution and response times and lower average number of serviced chats, the average satisfaction in this sector is close to the global average, which indicates longer, more difficult conversations that require more time to close.

Company size

We divided all companies into six categories according to the number of employees. We can safely assume that the number of staff members a business employs is proportionate to the size of the business.

Here’s how the satisfaction data looks like for the various company sizes:

Company size
Avg # of chats
Chat length
First response time
Percentage of all companies
Satisfaction
1-9
31
14m 26s
54s
44,73%
80,51%
10-49
49
12m 26s
1m 8s
28,43%
84,85%
50-99
49
13m 54s
1m 32s
12,50%
85,83%
100-499
94
11m 58s
1m 5s
9,98%
90,31%
500-999
39
12m 47s
1m 14s
1,94%
76,88%
1000+
37
11m 2s
1m 1s
2,42%
91,20%

It comes as no surprise that smaller companies will add up to be the dominant group. These companies also get the least chats on average, with just over 30 chats a day.

When it comes to the average satisfaction in this group, it seems to be much lower than for most of the other groups. It also takes the longest to solve a problem when contacting such companies. However, the amount of chats they get allows them to keep their response time very low.

In smaller companies, people who chat with customers are usually also assigned to other tasks and can’t focus all of their attention on live chat. They also don’t get the professional training available in bigger customer service departments.

When we take a look at the companies with 10 to 50 employees, which is also quite sizable group (28,43 percent of all companies), we can notice an improvement in nearly all categories with the exception of first response time. Companies of this size usually need some kind of dedicated support to be able to keep up with the number of received queries.

The first response times reaches the peak average of 1 minute 31 seconds in the third bracket (50-100 employees). The chat length in this group is also fairly long, almost reaching the 14 minutes mark. Despite these shortcomings, chats in this group are rated more favorably than in the first two groups. Proper training allows agents to pull good customer service results even though the customers have to wait longer for answers.

Taking all stats into consideration, the next bracket is the best performing one. Thanks to their dedicated support departments and proper training methods, companies employing 100 to 500 employees reach an an amazing average satisfaction score of 90,31 percent. Keep in mind that this group is still fairly big (almost 10 percent of all companies), which makes the data more reliable.

Agents working for companies employing 100-500 people manage to reach great satisfaction scores while handling the biggest number of chats. Their average chat length and first response times are also fairly decent.

The last two brackets are rather small when compared to the other groups, representing just 4,35 percent of all the studied companies. There is a large drop across the board in the 500-1000 employees group. On the other hand, the 1000+ employees group managed to get the shortest chat length and the highest customer satisfaction rating. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle and more data should be studied before discussing those two groups.

Audience

This metric shows what kind of target the studied companies are aiming for. For example, a B2C company is a business selling to consumers, while B2B is a business selling to other businesses.

Bigger companies also use live chat internally to coordinate their efforts from a number of locations around a country. The combinations imply that a company is not limited to a single target audience.

Audience
Avg # of chats
Chat length
First response time
Percentage
Satisfaction
B2B
25
15m 29s
1m 17s
18,27%
85,35%
B2C
56
12m 45s
1m 14s
51,87%
86,18%
Internal use
31
16m 7s
59s
2,56%
83,96%
B2B, B2C
33
13m 39s
1m 6s
22,66%
85,09%
B2B, Internal use
11
6m 15s
1m 16s
0,32%
72,94%
B2C, Internal use
22
16m 30s
1m 20s
0,85%
77,79%
B2B, B2C, Internal use
43
17m 25s
1m 5s
3,48%
79,40%

The most popular and, at the same time, the most successful group consists of B2C companies. They make for more than half of all the studied companies and reach the high satisfaction scores of 86,18 percent. These companies also manage to handle the most chats on an average day.

Companies that operate in both B2B and B2C space come close behind the B2C group in terms of the quality of the provided service. Even though it’s just half as big as the B2C group, it still makes for 22,66 percent of all companies.

The next group, the B2B companies, has nearly the same customer satisfaction score as the previous one. This is despite the fact that they scored lower in terms of first response time (76 seconds) and average chat length. This can signify a more thorough, less impulse attitude than the one in B2C segment. Since the B2B market is much smaller than the B2C one, the low average number of chats should not be surprising here.

Use of live chat by audience

Companies using chat internally score rather average results, bar for the first response time, which is a couple of seconds faster than the global average.

The next group is a combination of all the three targets. Due to its very specific nature, the group will naturally consist of a smaller portion of companies (3,48 percent). The below average satisfaction score suggests that this catch-all approach may suffer due to the different methods required to make support successful for each of the supported groups.

As for the remaining two combinations, there’s too little data (below one percent in both cases) to estimate how well these companies are doing with the chosen target.

Purpose

Chat purpose should be understood as the main task for which the livechat will be used. There are three options available: sales, support and the combination of both.

Even though we are talking about main aim here, we believe that companies using chat both for sales and support should be considered a separate group.

On a side note, we had a couple of entries of companies using live chat for consulting or coaching purposes. However, we decided not to include them in this research as they turned out rather insignificant in comparison to other groups.

Purpose
Avg # of chats
Chat length
First response time
Percentage of all companies
Satisfaction
Sales
41
11m 49s
56s
21,69%
86,50%
Support
54
12m 6s
1m 5s
22,71%
83,37%
Support, Sales
39
14m 40s
1m 15s
55,60%
87,28%

More than half of the studied companies use chat for both sales and support. This combination also produces the best customer service results in terms of customer satisfaction. Live chat is a very versatile tool, allowing for a proper flow of information on both sales and support channels.

The other two groups make the remaining 44,4 percent of the companies. The sales and supports are pretty evenly split. However, due to their purpose, they exhibit quite different satisfaction stats.

Use of live chat by purpose

The support group gets the most chats on average and gets the lowest satisfaction scores of the three (83,37 percent). This can be associated with the aim of this group: helping customers solve their problems. More often than not, clients accessing the chat support will be frustrated because of a faulty product or late delivery. Turning that negative experience into a positive one is not unheard of, but it can be rather difficult.

The sales-oriented group is made of chat agents who actively seek to convert website visitors into customers. They are quick to respond in a chat to maximize the possible purchase chance.

05

Efficiency Information

To give you a little bit more of a background about statistics like the first response time or the average number of chats, we prepared a couple of charts that illustrate the distribution in those metrics.

See where your company is placed when it comes to the number of chats you get or how many messages your agents have to send on average to finish a chat.

First response time

The speed at which you or your agents answer a query is one of the fundamentals of good customer service. The longer your customers will have to wait for an answer, the lower chance for leaving a good impression.

Here’s how various response speeds look like when coupled with satisfaction stats:

First response
Percentage of all companies
Satisfaction
Sum of chats
1-4
0,14%
84,13%
10 K
5-9
1,70%
91,76%
192.9 K
10-14
4,12%
92,25%
558.7 K
15-29
16,03%
91,10%
2.1 M
30-44
17,18%
90,57%
3 M
45-59
16,16%
89,57%
2.9 M
60-89
21,18%
88,16%
3.5 M
90-119
9,71%
80,64%
1.2 M
120-239
9,78%
73,34%
983.7 K
240-479
2,68%
59,01%
171 K
480+
1,33%
41,91%
64.7 K

As pictured above, the best possible results are achieved when the chat is picked up as quickly as after 5 seconds and as late as after 29 seconds. Going lower than that requires near instant response and is something more of a fluke rather than something that can be replicated.

Both the second and third brackets note very good customer satisfaction rates, however, they are still quite rare. The third bracket is what you should be aiming for. Even if you manage to reach its higher end of 30 seconds, it is still an impressive feat that will result in good reactions from your customers.

The most chats happen in the 60-89 group, with the average response falling somewhere in the middle. Reaching this kind of response time should be one of your first goals when improving your customer service.

Chat duration

Your approach to average chat length should vary depending on the type of business you run.

For example, a web hosting company resolving a lot of complicated cases might benefit from longer-lasting chats as the difficulty of the discussed cases may require more information to be exchanged.

At the same time, matters that don’t require complex help should be handled as fast as possible to get the best results. This dual approach to the length of chats is clearly visible in the statistics:

Chat duration
Percentage of companies
Satisfaction
Sum of chats
5-
8,07%
81,66%
579.3 K
5-10
28,20%
86,67%
4.9 M
10-15
25,20%
88,12%
4.6 M
15-30
28,75%
87,08%
4 M
30+
9,78%
82,21%
427.7 K

Both the 5-10 minutes and 15-30 minutes groups are nearly equal, with the average satisfaction score sitting somewhere in the middle.

When looking for a chat length goal for your company, you need to be aware of the cases handled on your live chat and what kind of approach they require – working toward a swift resolution or offering as much information as possible.

Number of chats

The daily distribution of chats tells us how many chats on average a company had with customers.

It’s also a valuable source of information on the scale of the implementations and the overall experience levels of agents working for those companies.

Chats
Percentage of companies
Satisfaction
Sum of chats
1-9
31,41%
82,91%
377.9 K
10-24
27,08%
84,47%
899.3 K
25-49
15,81%
86,12%
1.1 M
50-99
10,86%
86,37%
1.6 M
100-199
7,46%
87,06%
2.1 M
200-399
4,38%
85,40%
2.4 M
400-799
1,88%
88,31%
2.1 M
800-1599
0,76%
88,58%
1.7 M
1600-3199
0,28%
88,63%
1.2 M
3200-6399
0,05%
84,74%
462.7 K
6400+
0,03%
88,80%
743.8 K

When looking at the daily distribution stats, it’s easy to notice the relation between the number of chats and customer happiness. It appears that the more chats a company gets, the more satisfied its customers are.

This relation is all about the agents’ proficiency. Smaller companies with low amounts of chats don’t have dedicated support agents, not to mention whole departments. Bigger companies that deal with a large number of enquiries can afford to allocate a lot of their resources toward customer service departments and professional agent training.

Chat Density (Messages per chat)

This metric is a direct representation of the complexity of the chats agents face.

It shows how many messages it takes to finish up a chat.

Occupancy
Percentage of all companies
Satisfaction
Sum of chats
1-3
30,12%
79,80%
7.2 M
4-7
50,11%
88,17%
7.9 M
8-12
15,97%
92,62%
2 M
13-18
2,88%
85,36%
225.8 K
19+
0,92%
95,66%
17 K

As you can see, more than a half of the chats are resolved within four to seven replies from an agent. This bracket is also close to the average global satisfaction level of 87,05 percent.

The next group, 8-12 agent replies shows how rewarding a bit of extra effort can be. Chats with more replies from an agents, be it providing additional information or making sure that a client got all he or she needed can boost up the satisfaction score to a whooping 92,62 percent.

The 1-3 messages bracket shows how too little attention can negatively impact the satisfaction of your customers. After all, the amount of information you can transfer with up to three replies is very limited.

06

Chat Availability

The availability describes a company’s ability to offer service online.

It shows how long the company’s live chat was open for visitors and thus affects the amount of cases the company will get.

Longer availability (ideally 24 hours) requires dedicated customer service teams working in shifts. Smaller implementations with shorter availability times can be usually handled by one person and usually don’t pass the 8 hours mark.

Chat Availability
Avg # of chats
Chat length
First response time
Percentage of all companies
Satisfaction
<4h
4
12m 18s
1m 6s
24,10%
85,35%
4h-8h
25
13m 27s
1m 28s
16,36%
85,37%
8h-12h
47
13m 16s
1m 15s
23,54%
88,11%
12h-16h
108
12m 2s
1m 9s
8,59%
87,15%
16h-20h
87
12m 17s
1m 5s
3,83%
84,87%
20h-24h
120
8m 49s
1m
13,80%
85,57%
24h
134
3m 53s
11s
9,79%
89,63%

The longer a company’s chat is open for visitors, the higher average daily number of chats the company will get. It’s like running a brick and mortar store that is open for longer periods of the day has higher chances of attracting potential customers who happen to pass by.

The top tier customer service agents that provide 24/7 service see to score the best customer service results. They are nearly four times faster at resolving cases than companies that have their chat available for four and less hours a day. They are also six time faster at answering their chats.

Chat availability
24,10%
16,36%
23,54%
8,59%
3,83%
13,80%
9,79%
<4H
4-8h
8-12h
12-16h
16-20h
20-24h
24h
07

Impact of Chat Settings

The available customization options can help you flesh out your implementation and get better results.

By branding your chat window, you can really make it an integral part of your website and thus encourage visitors to access your chat.

When it comes to the way visitors enter a chat, there are two approaches available: embedded chat window that is a persistent part of the website or a pop-up chat window that opens in a separate window after clicking a live chat link or a button. Both these options have their pros and cons and it’s up to managers to decide what kind of engagement they want to encourage.

Customization settings

LiveChat users are able to upload their company’s logo, change the color scheme and modify the contents of the chat window through the available customization options.

The use of CSS allows them to modify and adapt virtually any part of the chat window to their website’s design.

Feature
Avg # of chats
Chat length
First response
Percentage of all companies
Satisfaction
All
79
13m 33s
1m 5s
27,95%
89,31%
None
55
14m 17s
1m 6s
14,16%
82,84%
Customized Chat Window
78
13m 16s
1m 3s
31,40%
89,04%
Custom Logo
58
13m 34s
1m 4s
82,40%
87,64%
Custom CSS
74
13m 5s
1m 4s
38,80%
88,17%

There is a huge gap between companies that make use of all the customization settings and those that use none. Companies that uploaded their logo and customized the chat window using available options and CSS get an average satisfaction rating of 89,31 percent. Businesses that miss out on these options get much lower satisfaction rating of 82,84 percent.

As you can see, there is much to gain with little actual effort required. It only takes a couple of minutes to set up a basic custom look. However, only a third of companies decided to use the customization options. It gets a bit better when it comes to CSS, as 38,80 percent of companies use it. Only the custom logo option is fairly often used. Four out of five companies display their own logo in the chat window.

Chat window type

LiveChat offers two type of chat windows: an embedded, Facebook style window that is a part of a particular page and a pop-up chat window that opens in a new browser window.

embedded chat window

pop-up chat window

The embedded chat window is a good pick if you want to provide constant help for visitors browsing your website. The embedded chat window will follow visitors around, making it easy for them to contact you if they need help.

The pop-up chat window is a good choice for companies offering support in certain parts of their site only. Since it opens in a new window, visitors will have to switch back and forth between your chat and your website.

Window type
Avg # of chats
Chat length
First response time
Percentage of all companies
Satisfaction
Embedded
59
13m 18s
1m 2s
88,36%
86,09%
pop-up
51
14m 38s
1m 12s
11,64%
90,70%

When we look at the satisfaction stats of both windows, we can see that the embedded chat window is much more popular. Nine out of ten businesses use this type of window to contact customers. This is probably due to the embedded chat window being a default settings. Companies might also prefer to use the Embedded chat window as it is much more engaging, since it is always available at the bottom of the screen.

The pop-up chat window seems to be more effective in terms of customer happiness. Even though visitors have to wait longer for an answer and it take more time to resolve a case via the pop-up chat window, it gets a high score of 90,70 percent.

The embedded chat window allows for faster communication as visitors can instantly start a conversation and its up to the agent to keep up. As a consequence, agents will have more chats to handle.

Chat distribution

There are two ways of assigning chats to agents in LiveChat. Agents can either pick up chats manually from a queue or have them distributed automatically.

Both ways are viable ways of distribution and will work differently in various situations.

Chat selection
Avg # of chats
Chat length
First response time
Percentage of all companies
Satisfaction
Manual
80
14m 32s
59s
10,76%
89,94%
Automatic
56
13m 14s
1m 4s
89,24%
86,72%

The less popular manual chat distribution is based around queues. Visitors who enter the queue are then picked by agents to enter a chat. Even though this type of set up is much less popular (only one in ten companies use chat queues), it produces very good results. It’s worth noting that this is not the default settings and companies are fully aware of the change when they make it.

Live chat with automatic chat distribution seems to be very close to the average chat satisfaction score. Because it is a default settings, it’s important to remember that this data could be a bit skewed and not representative of all companies.

08

Summary

Even though companies are becoming more and more efficient at chatting with customers, there’s always some room for improvement.

One of the prevailing trends we noticed when preparing this report is the importance of a dedicated support department. The presence of a dedicated, well-trained customer service team can do wonders for the satisfaction of your customers.

Even smaller companies should consider hiring at least one dedicated live chat agent. The extra proficiency and the ability to focus on servicing customers instead of handling other tasks can go a really long way.

We can notice an interesting split between the way companies use LiveChat. On the one hand, we have companies that benefit from being as fast as possible, offering help and advice at the shortest notice and resolving cases within just a few minutes.

On the other hand, we have companies that encourage longer conversations by offering chat via the embedded chat window, a window that follows the visitor around a website. Even though such chats turn out to be longer, the visitors are free to ask a question whenever such need arises, making the whole experience more enjoyable and fruitful.

The data suggests that live chat is a very versatile tool that can be used for sales and support purposes, even over the course of the same conversation.

Establishing and reinforcing a certain brand image is an important part of every live chat implementation. Companies utilizing all available branding options note much higher results than those that don’t. This is possibly one of the most cost-effective ways of improving your service, as it takes just a couple of minutes to get a basic customization going.

About

LiveChat, Inc. is the owner and developer of LiveChat, a real-time customer service tool for sales and support purposes.

More than 9,000 companies use LiveChat daily to service their customers, including brands like Adobe, ING, Samsung, Tele2, Orange Telecom, Better Business Bureau and Air Asia. Since its founding in 2002, LiveChat has been used all around the world in over 80 countries.

The company aims to create products that are simple, easy to use and powerful. Thanks to the quick implementation process, businesses can start using LiveChat within minutes.

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