Improve Service and Keep Customers with Chat

by | Aug 1, 2008

I am not a patient person.  When I need technical support or customer service from a big corporation, a feeling of dread wells up in me.

You know the feeling.  We’ve all been there.  On hold, wading through phone menus, wasting time.  The most frustrating thing is when you tell your story to one rep, then they decide they need to hand you off to a different department, and so on.

Well I must give credit where credit is due.  Yesterday I had two truley surprising customer service experiences.  In a GOOD way!

First the webcam on my Dell notebook wouldn’t work.  I went to their site and noticed a “chat with a technician” button and went for it.  The technician responded quickly, asked the right questions, diagnosed the problem and posted a link to a download, then used GotoAssist to install and configure it for me.  I was back in business in 30 minutes.


The best part was that during the entire chat, my cell phone was ringing off the hook and I was able to take every call and take care of business while the Dell rep was taking care of my computer.  It was as painless as it could have been.

Then the same evening I had a rare opportunity to pick a pay-per-view movie of my choice and relax.  The kids were having a sleep-over and my wife was out with her family.  But, the Comcast Movies On Demand service was giving me an error.

This time I just called the number on the screen and started wading through the phone system, and got disconnected, twice.

So I hit their website and noticed the Chat button again.  I tried it again and within 10 minutes, my movie was on.  Again, the best part was that I wasn’t chained to a phone.  The pizza guy came while I was chatting with the Comcast technician, I let the dog out, a phone call came in, life continued uninterrupted.

One note – I asked both the Dell and Comcast reps where the actually were and they were both here in Texas.  I think that makes a difference.

SalesNexus has been using Chat for support users of our online, hosted contact management system for a couple of years and its definitely been a win-win.  Its more efficient for us and our customers find it quick, easy and convenient.


I have to give Comcast and Dell Customer Service Grades of A+ for the way they leveraged chat to do an excellent job taking care of me.


The great news is that its also easy to set up in any business, even the smallest of businesses.  If your business has a website, you can set up a chat button within a day, or less.  Boldchat and LivePerson are two that we’ve used and have been pleased with.


No matter what business you’re in, chat can be a real win for you.  There are always going to be times when you’re team is tied up on the phone and the next customer ends up on voice mail or on hold.  Chat can be another answer.

Now, imagine that you have a Chat button on your site AND you have a good contact management database available to the Chat attendant.  A client initiates a chat by entering their name or email, your attendant looks them up in the contact management system and sees the history of their relationship with your company and now your client is really getting treated like a king!
I know I’m going to be finding new ways to leverage chat.  You should too.
BTW – I watched “I Am Legend” with Will Smith.  Pretty darned good.