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Virtual communication is the new norm, whether you’re ordering takeout or collaborating with a business partner halfway around the world. As a result, businesses of all sizes are taking advantage of virtual communication tools to stay in touch with customers and prospects. For example, 86% of businesses now have a social media presence and over half have a blog. The result? More people than ever are searching for businesses and making contact through online chat services like Google Hangouts, Skype, and WhatsApp. If you’re not already using virtual communication tools to stay in touch with your customers and grow your business, you may not be keeping up with the latest trends. Here are five tips for a successful online chat.

10 Facts About Online Chat You Probably Didn’t Know
Virtual communication is the new norm, whether you’re ordering takeout or collaborating with a business partner halfway around the world. As a result, businesses of all size are taking advantage of virtual communication tools to stay in touch with customers and prospects. For example, 86% of businesses now have a social media presence and over half have a blog. The result? More people than ever are searching for businesses and making contact through online chat services like Google Hangouts, Skype, and WhatsApp. If you’re not already using virtual communication tools to stay in touch with your customers and grow your business, you may not be keeping up with the latest trends. Here are five tips for a successful online chat.

Be patient with online chats
The best advice when starting an online chat is to be patient. You might be tempted to start using a virtual communication tool right away, but it’s best to ease into the process. Start small. Try just one customer or prospect at a time. If you’re not comfortable with that, start a new chat every few days. The key is to start slow and build up your comfort level with the process. If you jump right in, you may feel overwhelmed and frustrated.

Build a strong first impression
When you first sign in to your virtual communication tool, make sure your profile is up-to-date. Make sure you have a photo and have filled out your profile information. Your first impression will help you stand out from the competition and build a strong foundation for your chats.

Communicate often and effectively
Your chats should be used to communicate with your customers and prospects. It’s important to communicate often and effectively. You should be communicating with your customers at least once a week. You should also include an elevator pitch that summarizes your business and what sets you apart from your competitors.

Don’t focus just on selling
It’s true that the majority of your communication should focus on selling. However, you should also add value to each chat by answering questions, sharing helpful articles, and providing useful information. This will help build trust and show your customers you’re a resource for them.

Final tips – Make sure your chat is easy to use and accessible via multiple devices
The last key tip is to make sure your virtual communication is easy to use and accessible via multiple devices. Make sure you have a consistent look and feel across your platform. This makes it easy for customers to find you, join your chats, and communicate with you. It’s also important that your virtual communication platform works well on multiple devices. Customers will be using your virtual communication tool from multiple devices including desktop computers, laptops, smartphones, and tablets. That being said, make sure you also have a functional mobile-friendly chat experience. You don’t want your chats to be difficult or time consuming for your customers to access and join.