A good digital customer experience is proven to contribute to online customer satisfaction, sales, customer loyalty, and positive word-of-mouth communication. However, very little research has been done on the topic, especially in Finland, although digital customer experience has been a big topic in sales and marketing discussion for a long time.

The effects of using Finnchat’s chat service on e-commerce customer experience and attitudes towards e-commerce were extensively studied in 2017. The study included five large Finnish e-commerce stores and a survey was conducted for e-commerce customers who had made a purchase in the previous two months. This remains still the largest and most extensive study on the subject to date in Finland.

A total of 7228 responses were received to the study. The group comparison of the results analysis distinguished between respondents who used the help of Finnchat’s chat agent in connection with the last purchase (“chat respondents”; n = 655) and respondents who did not use it (“non-chat” n = 6573).

The benefits of chat for online shopping

The research results showed that the chat service brings significant benefits to online shopping. Chat service was found to improve the sales efficiency of e-commerce visits, but also to bring long-term benefits through an improved customer experience.

The main benefits of the chat service for online stores that emerged from the study:

  • The customer buys more
  • The customer buys more often
  • Customer exit is decreasing
  • The number of recommenders is growing
  • Commitment to the brand is growing
  • Customer satisfaction is improving

Customers using the e-commerce chat service:

  • Recommended e-commerce 47.5 % more likely
  • 40.7 % more likely to trust the online store
  • Intended to make repurchases 28.0% more likely
  • Were satisfied with e-commerce 27.3% more likely

According to the research results, chat agents were able to solve 72.4 % of the problems faced by the customer in online shopping. A chat conversation during an e-commerce visit nearly tenfold the probability of a customer making a purchase (an improvement in the conversion rate of 895 %).

E-commerce sales per session (= sales euros per e-commerce visit) was 1310 % higher when the visit was combined with a chat.

Customers with experience in the chat service were 39.7 % less likely to leave the online store when they encountered the problem, and the average purchase of a chat customer was 37 % higher than other customers.

The importance of the chat service in purchasing decisions during an e-commerce visit

The three most important things that customers who tried the chat service needed help in the study:

  1. Getting more information about the products
  2. Inquiry about product availability
  3. Selection of suitable products

Customers needed help from chat customer service especially for things that support the purchase decision. According to the results of the survey, Finnchat’s chat agents are able to meet customers’ needs and help customers make purchase decisions. 85.0 % of chat respondents found the chat service useful when making their previous purchase in an online store and 64.1% of chat respondents felt that they would not have been able to make their purchase decision without the help of the chat customer service.

Now in 2021 interacting within websites is a very important factor in digital CX. Chat service is one big thing when interacting on your websites, but it is not the only one. We believe that creating different service layers within a website is a good way to develop the digital CX. These service layers include proactive self-service, automation (chatbots and AI), personal chat service, and expert service to solve the most challenging cases.

Digital CX – download all research data for your use
From our free e-book about digital customer experience, you’ll find a more detailed summary of the results of that study. In addition to the statistics found in this article, the e-book covers the importance of the chat service in the following areas of research:

– The effects of chat conversations on customer attitudes and shopping experience
– E-commerce visit manageability

– Finding information in an online store

– Trust and satisfaction with e-commerce

– E-commerce customer loyalty

In addition to this research, the e-book covers in detail how digital customer experience and holistic customer experience are formed. At the moment, this e-book is available only in Finnish. You can download the e-book from HERE.

Pietari works as a Marketing Manager at Finnchat, which as a company strives to improve the quality of the digital customer experience with its services. Pietari has an extensive work history of more than five years in the marketing office and his areas of expertise are in the field of digital marketing and content production. In his spare time, Pietari is a passionate fly fisherman who has been a member of Fly Fishing Team Finland since 2015 and has written dozens of articles for fishing magazines. Pietari can also be spotted on endurance running loops several times a week. LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/pietari-sipponen/