With so much fierce competition to contend with, dental practitioners are trying everything they can to get website visitors to convert to fee-for-service patients. So, what about live chat? Everywhere you turn, websites are employing a live chat box that greets website visitors and offers personalized customer service; but is the added expense worth it?
More importantly, does it work? In other words, does assisting web visitors in real time encourage them to pick up the phone or visit your dental office? Here is the breakdown so that you can make the decision for yourself.
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Live chat was designed to help visitors feel more welcome when landing on a website. Immediately upon landing on your website, and on any page where the live chat widget has been added, a chat box will open, and a friendly representative will greet the visitor just as if they’d walked into your lobby.
“Hello, my name is Chris, would you like to schedule an appointment?” might be a greeting that your representative gives website visitors. The chat representative can answer questions, point visitors to valuable information and schedule appointments, all without speaking to a single human being.
Even though the program can be automated, the chat box can also connect your web visitors to actual staff members. Yet, even if it’s just a bot doing the talking, advances in Live Chat technology will make it appear as though there’s a real live human on the other end.
On paper, adding a live chat box to your website makes perfect sense. The service is faster than email, and there’s no need to collect the visitor’s contact information to make the first connection. Most live chat representatives also ask for a name right up front, so the service is naturally personalized.
Then there’s the efficiency of it all. When web visitors can get their questions answered by a friendly web bot, that for all they know is a rep from your office, they won’t have to call and tie up your staff’s valuable time. The only calls that should come in with live chat are ones where the caller intends to schedule an appointment.
If live agents are chatting with web visitors instead of bots, those agents can multi-task while the chat is ongoing. They would be much more restricted if they were tied up on the phone.
Live Chat sounds good. To sweeten the deal, many services add a full-suite of options, like the ability to gather patient data, secure feedback, and share files, making the live chat box – at least in theory – a sales generating machine.
For dentists and cosmetic dentists, some services offer encryption to keep patient data secure and even canned responses, such as how to keep a tooth viable and ready for transport immediately following an accident. And, let’s face it; there’s no better way to engage with patients after-hours than to have a friendly, smiling, (AI) human being working on your behalf.
Live chat can be affordable, and it can be very expensive, with prices ranging from free to up to $999 a year, or more, depending on the options offered and how many rep accounts are needed. Most services offer the ability to receive full chat logs and analytics (what pages did the visitor land on, how long did they linger, and browsing history).
Is Live Chat Effective at Converting Patients?
Live chat can certainly work to convert website visitors into fee-for-service dental patients, but the service must be chosen carefully.
For instance, cosmetic dentists, orthodontists, and general dentists would be wise to choose live chat services that offer:
According to Neil Patel, an Internet marketing expert, live chat can improve your conversion rates by 45%. He doesn’t name dental marketers specifically, but those are his stats across the board for a variety of industries.
Live Chat appears to be a good investment, but the technology is still new. Everyone thought that the pop-up would change the game, and now people can’t stand them. However, for years, marketers have been searching for a way to add that human element to their websites. They’ve tried auto-play on videos, which feels intrusive, pop-ups, which can ruin your day, and now live chat.
Live chat is non-intrusive, the boxes can be easily closed, and by all appearances you have a friendly representative manning your website 24/7. What better way to answer a prospect’s question or facilitate an appointment request?
The point is if you can’t be available to stand ready to talk to prospects morning, noon and night, live chat for websites just might be the next best thing.
Find out how to maximize your website conversions with the latest Internet marketing strategies. Call or email Millionairium, where our team is ready to take your online presence to new heights.