With face to face customer service on pause and many large businesses’ phone lines struggling to cope with the huge call volumes, live chat has stepped up to help the nation with their customer service enquiries.
This spike in enquiries has meant that businesses have had to adapt their forms of communication for the lockdown and this has resulted in a big boost for live chat features.
Moneypenny, the outsourced communication provider, analysed their internal data which showed how the lockdown led to an increase in live chat. Moneypenny data highlights that there were more live chat users in April or May compared to February.
The busiest times also saw a shift during lockdown, mirroring the amount of people having to switch to working from home as isolation rules became more strict.
During the peak of the lockdown the study shows how the most popular time was 1pm for live chats, lunch time for many working from home. However, in the week commencing the 11th of May, after the prime minister’s announcement that some employees can return to work, the data shows an even higher increase in live chats at 10am, by 37% and 1pm by 41%.
The amount of time customers spent on the chat also saw an increase. With the average being around 491 seconds since the lockdown, chat times soon saw an increase to 508 seconds.
The larger businesses’ live chats saw the highest uptake with 9% increase in chat length. This is followed by the Automotive sector with 7% increase.
With lockdown affecting businesses across all industries, the study also focused on the changes to specific industry enquiries.
The figures showed a huge spike when it comes to enquiries around letting and property. This industry saw a massive increase in live chat messages, reaching a 94% increase in usage during the lockdown.
Moving house and buying property has been on pause in the past few weeks, but with lockdown slowly easing up, it would appear that more people are starting to think about moving.
Letting agents transitioned to virtual viewings as lockdown rules were relaxed and in the week commencing 11th of May, Moneypenny saw an increase in letting viewing enquiries by 210% and sales viewings by 184%.
The lockdown has shown just how valuable live chat is for businesses. The ease and speed of live chat is something many customers are starting to prefer and live chat’s popularity will continue to grow.