Wednesday, August 14, 2013

CEO Blog: The Chat Abandonment Syndrome

I remember when I started my career as a SW Engineer and most of my focus was around technical issues.  As I became a CEO, a lot of my time was spent addressing business challenges, but now that the business is growing, Human Dynamics are taking center stage.  It is fascinating and I love it.  

Human Dynamics related to all the constituencies I deal with: Shareholders, Investors, Employees, Customers and their Customers (we are a B2B company), etc. As an example, I am noticing an interesting pattern.  Many companies use Live Chat as a way to provide service to their customers.  It is convenient, fast and less expensive than other communication channels. It makes sense... 

However, what’s happening is that many companies complain about the same issue.  It appears that end users click on the Live Chat option, but then disappear and do not engage in the chat with a live Agent.  The issue is significant.  Some of the companies I have been talking to experience 50% abandonment.  I named this phenomenon the “Chat Abandonment Syndrome” and it is costing companies millions.  The reason being that Agents are compelled to respond to every incoming chat and wait for at least a couple of minutes before declaring the contact DOA (Dead On Arrival). In doing so, the Call Center efficiency takes a dive for the worst. 

The reasons are unknown.  Some claim technical glitches with the Live Chat platform, other confusion in the way a company sets the expectation for the experience.  Nobody knows for sure. I would be curious to know if your company also experiences Chat Abandonment Syndrome and if you have figured out the cause.  We don’t know the reason for it, but the good news is that we have found a solution. 

-Diego Ventura, CEO, noHold, Inc.