New Moneypenny data has revealed substantial increases in live chat usage during the lockdown.
With face to face customer service on pause and many large businesses’ phone lines struggling to cope with large call volumes, live chat has stepped up to help the nation with their customer service enquiries.
With lockdown affecting businesses across all industries, the study focused on the changes in specific industry enquiries.
Larger businesses saw the biggest increase in the volume of live chats (with weekly live chat volumes up 215% on pre-Covid weekly levels) this is followed by the Automotive sector which had the second-highest increase (206%), followed by Estate Agents (190%), Legal sector (118%) and finally SME’s with an increase of 109%.
As lockdown is slowly easing it appears that more people are starting to think about moving and buying property.
Letting agents transitioned to virtual viewings as lockdown rules were relaxed and in week 20 (week commencing 11 of May), Moneypenny saw an increase in letting viewing enquiries by 210% and sales viewings by 184%.
The amount of time customers spent on the chat also saw an increase. With the average chat time being around 491 seconds during the lockdown, chat times soon saw an increase for the week commencing 11 May to 508 seconds.
Large business live chats saw the highest increase in chat length of 9%, followed by Automotive sector with 7% increase, then SME’s with 6% and then Estate Agents 2%.
Joanna Swash, CEO of Moneypenny comments: “The lockdown has shown just how valuable live chat is for businesses and particularly as they have had to adapt to the new government guidelines and social distancing laws.
Live chat has managed to fill the gap between the ease of email and the speed of phone calls. In times of panic and high stress, live chat has been able to keep people connected and has relieved some of the pressures faced by customer service teams.”