When I go to a site with a chat feature, I do not hesitate to use it to get my questions answered. Heck, that is what it is there for and I take advantage of it when a site is so into customer service that they offer me that level of service and opportunity to get my questions answered on the spot. The majority of times a courteous person pops in to politely address any questions and concerns I may have. No telephone menu hell, no wait time, we both just tip tap on the keyboard hoping to do business together.
I always use proper “Net Manners” when engaging in support chats. I say “Hello” ask them if they can be of assistance with the issue at hand and sign off “TIA” for Thanks in Advance.
They respond and we go back and forth until the issue is resolved. When the conversation wraps up, I make a point of thanking them for their time and to have a nice day.
Little did I realize how rare that type of courtesy may be for those support agents until I became one myself. The lack of courtesy and clarity actually caused me to remove chat from my consulting site @ TheIStudio.com. I was astounded at the curt demands and cryptic questions that come through my “Live Support Online” feature.
Now don’t get me wrong, my goal is to be of service (my site is titled At Your Service) and to be there for that speedy type of on demand response. I am all about customer service after all. But after using this feature for several weeks, I had only experienced a rare few incoming courteous inquiries.
On a daily basis I received inquiries where an incoming chat request comes in with a question that I promptly responded to by first thanking the site visitor for stopping by and I then go on to take the time to answer their question only to have them disengage the chat. No thank you for your time, no response back – they received their answer and went on their way. They were done with me!
Online support chats are not any different from e-mail when it comes to communicating with courtesy, knowledge and understanding. There is a human being on the other side of your screen there to serve you and respond to your inquiries. Is it too difficult to say hello and thank them for their time? Or are you one of those hiding in your anonymity to just get the answers you want as though they are somehow owed to you without a hint of gratitude?
Anyone who has read any of my materials knows I am big on courtesy. Courtesy NEVER goes out of style and there is never a situation where it cannot be used to foster better relationships and communications. Regardless of what side of the business screen you are on.
Keep in mind when you use a Website’s support chat that just because that service is offered to you doesn’t mean you can be rude and demanding. Well, you can but I guess that would speak volumes as to the kind of person you would be like to do business or partner with.
Why not rise above the rest and let the folks on the other side know you appreciate them being there and offering that service for you?