Start the Conversation With Live Chat in Your Store

Big Cartel’s strength is its simplicity: it’s easy to set up your shop and we cover the basics of running your business. But because we know that your needs may grow over time, we’ve teamed up with additional services that can add some bells and whistles to your shop operation.

We’ll go over some add-on apps that you can sign up for to expand what you’re able to do with your shop. If this feels intimidating or if you’re trying to keep costs down, don’t worry! Your Big Cartel shop comes with a built-in contact page that sends messages to your email. It’s included when you sign up and can be a manageable alternative to chat, especially when your shop is more simple. You can always start with just your contact page, and then explore chat options if emails start to stack up. If you’re getting a lot of customer questions, it might be time to consider a chat app.

The options

Your shop can directly integrate with a few chat add-ons: LiveChat and Lucky Orange. They each cost around $10 per month, but because their features are a little different, it’s up to you to choose which one fits your needs best.

LiveChat (as you can probably tell from their name) goes all in on chat tech. A typical LiveChat window sits on the bottom right side of your website, and you can either proactively engage with visitors or wait for them to tap on the window and start a conversation. You’ll be able to preview customer messages as they type, save and reuse frequently used responses, keep track of conversations, and even add a chatbot if you need some extra help.

Lucky Orange is primarily an analytics tool (we mentioned their heat maps in a blog post about pop-ups), but they also offer a chat tool. In addition to answering questions, you can see a customer’s screen while you chat with them and highlight an area of their screen: ideal for helping them navigate your shop.

Use chat to improve your business

If you’ve decided that chat is a good addition to your shop, remember that consistent and updated information is key: Be realistic when setting your availability: better to have fewer hours when you’re actually available than leave customers hanging because you’ve stepped away from the screen. Update your opening chat message frequently with relevant info. Perhaps mention your typical shipping time, or direct shoppers to a category that’s perfect for an upcoming holiday or season.

As you make chatting with customers part of your daily work, think of ways it can enhance other areas of your business: Take a look at your repeat responses: are there details you can add to product descriptions or an FAQ page? Look for ways to proactively answer what a customer is wondering about to improve their experience and reduce your workload. Connect with your customers by adding an extra personal touch. If you get an order from a customer who used the chat, include a note that references your conversation. In addition to making them feel heard, it’ll remind folks that there’s a real person on the other end of a chat box.

To chat or not to chat

This article gives a brief overview of LiveChat and Lucky Orange, but it’s important that you dig in to decide which option will best help you. Take a look at Big Cartel’s lineup of add-on integrations to decide what will strike the right balance between cost and helpfulness.

Sarah Anderson

Marketing at Big Cartel. Loud talker, maker at City of Industry. Semi-professional aunt. Pretty psyched about all of it.

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