Whether in-store or online, page by page, or aisle by aisle, shoppers rely on the expertise of associates to help them find the products they need fast. With speed in mind, it's no wonder that chat services continue to garner the highest volume of virtual requests - After all, just as the name suggests, what's faster than live, right?
When it comes to speed, Live Chats can be broken down even further:
- How fast can customers submit chats?
- How fast are chats picked up?
- How fast does the responding associate respond in the chat?
Here at Salesfloor, we rely on your partnership to knock point 3 out of the park by applying your charm, attention to detail, & dedication to the best customer experience. For points 1 & 2: we've got your back!
Introducing Salesfloor's new Live Chat, or as we call it: Dynamic Availability Routing (DAR), designed with your customers' best interests in mind.
Prior to the release of DAR, your retailer had 1 of 2 chat modes: Queue or Broadcast. Queue allowed associates at your store to line up for incoming live chats. In other words, the first associate at your store to activate live chat was first in line to receive the first chat submitted to your store via your retailer's website, the second was second, the third was third, and so on. Broadcast meant that when a customer submitted a chat to your store through your retailer's website, all associates at your store with Live Chat ON would receive the incoming chat notification simultaneously, and only the fastest associate to accept the chat would then be connected to the lucky customer.
Now, we're certainly no strangers to change, and we're all ears when it comes to feedback: Queue & Broadcast, though effective, were not perfect. Each with its own unique challenges including lower chat answer rates, frequently unavailable stores, and chat hours limited to the store closest to the customer, to name a few.
So what does Dynamic Availability Routing actually do?
DAR adapts to maximize your customers' chances of reaching available associates for chat through the Connect widget, by allowing them to reach more associates, faster & more often. How? This is where the dynamic routing comes in: Customers are no longer limited to chatting with the store that's closest to them (let's call it their preferred store). Instead, Salesfloor will prioritize associates at the customer's preferred store, but will also route the request to nearby stores if there aren't enough associates available for chat in the closest store.
When presented with the Connect widget on your retailer's site, customers are given the option to specify whether they simply need to connect with anyone, or can choose to limit their request to associates at their preferred store when necessary.
Even better, your customers will see live chat as an available request type more often, as the widget considers the availability of associates across all locations, and not simply the closest store.
When selecting "Any store" on the connect widget (above), Salesfloor will first check to see how many available associates are at the closest (preferred) store. If your customer indicates a required specialty (e.g. women's apparel, shoes, etc.) for their request, Salesfloor will then only consider associates with the selected specialty as available for the customer's request.
Once the customer submits their request, the connect widget will then broadcast the incoming chat up to 6 associates in the preferred OR nearby stores, depending on your retailer's setup.
For example, if a customer is closest to their local store in Manhattan, but there are only 2 associates in the Manhattan store that are active for live chat AND have the correct specialty. Salesfloor will prioritize the first 2, and also send the incoming chat to up to 4 additional associates from the Newark, Brooklyn, and Queens stores.
Associates that are pinged outside of the preferred store, will be shown the customer's preferred store on the incoming live chat notification (below), but can answer the live chat at any time by clicking "confirm"
The Customer themselves will always be kept aware of which store they're connected to within the chat window on their screen:
What are the benefits?
Great question! Let's start with the drawbacks: With Dynamic Availability Routing (DAR) your customer may or may not be connected to their preferred store. Now that we've got that out of the way, let's talk about the benefits:
- Better live chat availability: The Connect widget on your retailer's website will show live chat as available more often, by taking into account the availability of all associates & all stores at your retailer using Salesfloor.
- Longer live chat coverage: Gone are the days that customers are limited to their local store's hours. Your west coast early birds can reach active stores in the east, and your east coast night owls benefit vice versa.
- Increased live chat volume: Your retailer's live chat availability will be available longer & more often for customers seeking help.
- Higher chat connection rate: Thanks to Live Chat's new broadcast pooling, up to 10 associates per chat will be pinged - freeing up the rest of the associates to accept & engage in subsequent chats.
- The customer is in control: "Any Store" may be the Connect widget's default, but your customers can always choose to send their request to their preferred/local store only when needed