customer service, crew, customer enquiries, customer support

Chapter 5: Free Ecommerce Customer Service Tools

INSPIRED & WRITTEN BY Arcadier

Good customer service lies at the heart of any successful businesses, and is vital for ensuring the overall health of your business. Many small companies tend to put customer service at the lowest priority in their business models as it requires extra resources, time and money to uphold. However, customer service is often the only contact between a company and its customers. Good customer service is hence absolutely essential in building up brand loyalty and awareness, which directly impacts the profitability of your business.

Indeed, the amount of effort required to keep track of customer interactions may make the process seem taxing and redundant, especially since the benefits that can be reaped may not be immediate. In such situations, there are tools and applications available that simplifies the whole process. In fact, such applications are often cloud-hosted, which increases the convenience and efficiency of the whole process as you can access these tools anywhere, including on your mobile phones.

Here are some free applications that can help you better engage with your customers in various forms – whether through live chat or acquiring feedback for your services.

Help-Desk

Freshdesk

A reliable, multi-channelled help-desk solution that allows you to streamline customer support – addressing enquiries ranging from email, phone, web chat or social media platforms – into a centralized interface. The award-winning software automates multiples processes, including allocating questions to the appropriate support agents. Self-service features are also available, which allows customers to view the status of their enquiries, seek solutions online and even vote on ideas.

You can enjoy Freshdesk for free or opt for their tiered pricing plans.

Chat Apps

Tawk.to

Tawk.to allows you to monitor and chat with your customer on your website or from a free customizable page. Amidst other useful features that facilitates customer support, this premium live-chat application allows you to monitor website visitors in real time, review chat history and check performance in analytics. A huge plus-point is that although the app is completely free, there are no annoying advertisements within the app, or restrictions in the number of concurrent chats or number of agents that you can share a site with.

My Live Chat

Using this tool, you can easily integrate a customizable live chat option into your website or application, which is able to facilitate file exchanges as well. A mobile chat App is also available to allow users to engage with their customers on-the-go. A similar software is Pure Chat, although the free version faces more restrictions in terms of number of Live Chats and users.

My Live Chat is free and comes with a premium paid version.

Survey and Form Apps

Google Forms

Google Forms make the whole process of making, editing and responding to forms really convenient and aesthetically pleasing, on screens big and small. You can create and analyze surveys right in your Google web browser, without having to install any additional software. Collating responses is a hassle-free process as responses to your surveys are neatly and automatically collected in Forms, with real-time response info and charts. Moreover, multiple people can work at the same time, and every change is saved automatically.

Google Form is free for unlimited users and allows you to run as many polls and surveys as you like until your Google Drive is full (up to 15GB free online storage).

SurveyMonkey

A trusted customizable online survey software used by many. SurveyMonkey allows you to conduct surveys tailored to your needs, whether it's a simple poll or an in-depth market research.  In addition, the software offers large-scale enterprise options for companies interested in data analysis, brand management, and consumer-focused marketing.

The basic plan for SurveyMonkey is free, while paid plans are available on site.

MailChimp Survey

If you are an active user of MailChimp – the marketing automation platform that helps you share email and ad campaigns with clients – remember to check out this useful feature. It offers several ways to incorporate surveys in your email campaigns, including poll merge tags to gauge subscriber sentiment from a scale of 1 to 10, and survey merge tag to collect survey responses to a question. You can also adopt the option of integration tools for a more detailed survey.

MailChimp is free and comes with premium paid options.

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