Live chat for the automotive industry

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The future of the automotive industry is bright.

With technological developments of automobile manufacturing progressing rapidly, car dealerships focus on modernizing their customer service and online car sales.

A growing number of customers carry out their own research online before they enter a showroom in person.

A car dealership’s website is no longer only a place to visit for contact information. It is now a refined digital showroom, with all the perks and choices as a physical one.

And just like in the physical showroom, your prospects and customers have to be welcomed and guided by approachable, friendly, and knowledgeable assistants. 

So how can you boost your online sales and increase your customer satisfaction score and response time? 

The solution you are looking for is live chat

Are you ready to put it in gear?

What is live chat? 

The entire customer journey is becoming digitized. Due to smartphones and other smart devices, people are “On” anywhere and at any time of the day, particularly the millennial generation. 

Buying a car is an emotional and personal event for many customers. From the first car to the latest model, customers take time and carefully consider all the options before deciding on the vehicle of their dreams. 

Modern-day consumers want intelligent online support and a personalized approach when considering purchasing a new car.

With live chat software, you can help them along the way and significantly influence their decision-making. 

LiveAgent Live Chat Demo | Live Agent02:16Youtube video: LiveAgent Live Chat Demo
Live Agent

In the past, chat was quite basic. As the customer demands and the online buying habits changed, live chat support software has seen an increased development.

What used to be one of the options for communicating with a business is now an expectation and the most popular channel. 

Where do you start? 

Each conversation begins by simply clicking on the live chat button. Sometimes referred to as a live chat widget, it is a small bubble embedded on a website, usually in the lower right corner.

The most common placement is on the home page or the product pages, but we recommend placing it on the pages that bring the most traffic or have some strategic value.

Customize chat button in Customer service software - LiveAgent
Example of a live chat button design (click to enlarge)

Instead of calling or visiting dealerships and making an appointment to talk to someone face-to-face, customers can chat with a live representative online. 

Dealerships can also provide customers with information that they might not know or expect (for example, a dealership might be able to tell you whether a manufacturer’s warranty covers a specific vehicle or if you have a good chance of getting a loan for a car).

Real-time chat feature in Help desk ticketing system - LiveAgent
Example of chat conversation (click to enlarge)

The feeling of going on the road in your new car brings out the emotions linked with freedom. 

To match that feeling, LiveAgent offers the freedom to customize a chat widget to match your brand image and style and make your website visually dynamic and vibrant.  

You can choose from the most popular pre-designed templates in the chat button gallery, or you can create a custom chat icon.

Chat button gallery in Live chat software - LiveAgent
Example of chat button gallery (click to enlarge)

Each option is fully customizable for mobile appearances so that you can keep your design’s consistency on any device.

It’s a good idea to plan ahead and design a scripted response for your chat support team to follow when a customer asks for help via chat. 

We made it easier for you and prepared some templates here.

How live chat complements phone, email support, and sales? 

One of the most common customer complaints is that they cannot receive an answer immediately when contacting customer service via phone or email. 

Any delay can mean loss of customers and a dip in sales. 

The factors range from insufficient staff members to a lack of proper help desk software.

In comparison with phone and email, implementation of live chat can mitigate the customer’s support challenges. 

Chat operatives can provide instant support to customers via live chat and in real-time. No more waiting for a response. 

Not only that, but the agents can handle multiple chats at the same time. In traditional call centers, support reps manage either phones or email, but rarely both. 

To prevent overworking your support team, you can set up chat distribution and select one of the three automatic route directions:

  • Random Assignment
  • Ring to all
  • Max utilization
Chat distribution
Example of chat distribution (click to enlarge)

To ease the workload, you can set up a lower or higher priority for a specific agent, routing time, inactivity time, or even breathing time. 

In case the chat requests become too overwhelming, you can set up maximum queue length. When the queue limit is reached, the chat button automatically changes its availability to the offline mode or is completely hidden from your website. 

By clicking on the offline button, customers will activate and fill out the pre-chat form. Once your team is back at full force, they will have all the information necessary and can get in touch with the client.

Max queue length feature in Help desk ticketing system - LiveAgent
Example of offline button (click to enlarge)

This way, you can improve your agents’ efficiency and ensure that each inquiry will be answered. 

And to top it all off, by integrating with standard social media platforms, you can engage with customers and reduce the risk of having unanswered messages. 

To summarize, live chat is a more cost-effective method of communication than phone or email for these reasons: 

  • Reduced average waiting time
  • Lowest-customer effort
  • Decreased volume of incoming messages
  • Increased engagement 
  • Improved website design

Race ahead of your competition

Benefits of live chat for car dealers

The automotive industry is a highly competitive sector. Therefore, apart from the products and prices, you can show your customers value through your customer service. 

My definition of ‘innovative’ is providing value to the customer

Mary Barra – CEO of General Motors

The customer journey can be observed as five distinctive stages: 

  1. Awareness 
  2. Self-research  
  3. Consultation 
  4. Purchase  
  5. Retention 

To get from stage 1 to stage 5, you have to offer your customers direct communication with your team, especially in the early stages of the sales cycle. 

Connecting with customers through live chat is a convenient solution to solve customers’ pain points on their journey through the sales funnel.

By guiding your customers through stages, you will understand their needs and receive numerous benefits in return.

Benefits of Live Chat and How to Use It | Live Agent05:52Youtube video: Benefits of Live Chat and How to Use It
Live Agent

Let’s look at the four leading benefits of using live chat for the automotive industry.

Collect the hottest leads

Your car dealership might not be open 24/7, but that doesn’t mean that your customers will not visit your website. Even when you are offline, your customers should have an option to message you.

Add a contact form to your website and allow customers to choose the department they want to contact. This way, you can also collect valuable leads even if your business is closed and use them later in your email marketing strategy.

Contact forms feature in Live chat software - LiveAgent
Example of a contact form (click to enlarge)

Decreased bounce rate

Set up proactive chat invitations on strategic pages, such as the checkout page or pricing page, to elicit engagement and increase your live chat conversions.

Proactive chat invitations are automated, pop-up messages that allow you to target specific kinds of customers, tailor your promotions or recommend similar products. Proactive chat invitations can do it all.

Multiple chat invitations can be created for various customer groups, for example, new and returning customers. 

Chat invitation gallery in Live chat software - LiveAgent
Example of a chat invitation gallery (click to enlarge)

In combination with a chats overview, you can gain a comprehensive insight into the state of your chat platform, such as how many visitors are in a queue, available agents, or time customers spent browsing specific pages.

With the information collected, you can proactively reach out and invite customers to chat. 

Mockup-Website monitoring-chat overview
Example of chats overview (click to enlarge)

For instance, if you run a used car dealership, you know how time-consuming and tedious it is for potential buyers to find the right person on the right website. But with live chat, you can cut out the middleman, so to speak, and reach out directly to your prospects.

Incorporating multiple features into one strategy is a great way to reduce the cart abandonment rate and capture leads for your sales pipeline.

Improved conversion rate analytics

Let’s say you want to know the actual conversion data from your live chat for WordPress. With LiveAgent, you can. Activating the chat embedded tracking plugin allows you to measure the overall impact of live chat on conversions. This way, you will have a better understanding of the revenue live chat generates. 

Chat embedded tracking
Example of chat embedded tracking (click to enlarge)

But that’s not all. If you want to review the customer service efforts, you can generate up to 11 customer service reports. The results can reveal opportunities for improvement. 

Reports in Help desk software - LiveAgent
Example of reports (click to enlarge)

Cultivate long-lasting relationships

With LiveAgent, you can also build a community forum and knowledge base, where customers can access articles, comment, or even contribute themselves. This is a great way to provide support even for the customers who prefer self-service.

Example of a community forum (click to enlarge)

Amplify your social media engagement

Not leveraging the power that social media can have on a business ROI is a mistake that many companies are still making. 

People use social media for everything these days, and it is only logical to have a chatting tool that they can use to connect with your dealership. 

Integrate the social media platforms into your LiveAgent dashboard and respond to each mention, post, or review.

Add new fuel to your customer service

Key live chat features for car dealerships  

Each chat operative plays an essential role in the customer experience. Their efforts, professional etiquette, and interactions are what ultimately lead to a positive outcome.

Etiquette in Live Customer Support | Live Agent01:13Youtube video: Etiquette in Live Customer Support
Live Agent

Although marketing might not be directly involved, a satisfactory consumer experience is beneficial for lead generation marketing. If customers receive excellent service, they are more willing to share their contact information.  

But even if your chat agents are strictly concentrated on the customer service side of the relationship, the training on how to use live chat and its features to create a memorable and personalized experience is vital. 

Due to the anonymous nature of the chat session, agents can sometimes become negligent and not pay attention to the fact that another human is on the other side. And it is that human interaction that differentiates live chat from a chatbot. 

So, which features are ideal for the personalized customer experience? 

Real-time typing-view

Delight customers with quick and accurate answers to their questions, even before they hit send. How? With a real-time typing view, agents can observe what the customer is writing in real-time and prepare their response.

Real time typing
Example of a real-time typing view (click to enlarge)

Online visitors

Being prepared in advance is always a good strategy. Monitor your online visitors‘ behavior, which country they’re from, or what is their IP address and leverage the acquired information in a chat conversation.

Online ticket history feature in Customer service software - LiveAgent
Example of online visitors (click to enlarge)

Video chat

A feature that truly embodies the philosophy of personal interaction. If you want to bring your customers an in-store experience online, look no further than video chat.

Place a live video chat button on your website and use it for co-browsing with your customers. 

Real time video chat browser based
Example of video chat (click to enlarge)

Predefined answers and canned responses

These replies save agents from potential grammatical errors and keep the style of conversation consistent. Predefined answers and canned responses to routine customer inquiries save time and the struggle of composing a new response to each question.

Multi-language chat widgets

If you deal with an international clientele, you can provide multilingual support.

Configure the chat widget to your customer base preferred language and route a communication to a specific agent capable of speaking the language. 

Language adaptable widgets in Customer service software - LiveAgent
Example of a multi-language chat widget (click to enlarge)

Pre-chat survey

Before starting a chat session, your agents can ask for the customer’s contact information with the pre-chat survey.

Example of a pre-chat survey (click to enlarge)

Post-chat survey 

There is always room for improvement. After each session, customers can rank the agent’s performance, leave feedback, or request a transcript.

Agent ranking feature in Help desk software - LiveAgent
Example of agent ranking (click to enlarge)

A post-chat survey conveys the message that your dealership values the opinions of your customer base.

Internal chat

Keep the communication open internally as well. Even agents require help sometimes, and with the internal chat, they can contact fellow agents by sending them a private message, all during an ongoing chat. 

Mockup-Internal chat
Example of the internal chat (click to enlarge)

Accelerate your customer service

Should you outsource your live chat support? 

The internal employees will know the most about your products and services, but some dealerships may not have the budget or the internal customer department at all.

Preferably, you want your customers to be serviced by your direct employee, just like in your standard showroom. 

The essential ability of live chat is speed. Customers expect a quick response, and if that is not possible, it might be best to outsource.

Before outsourcing your live chat operatives to an outside customer service team, the critical part is to measure your customer service’s efficiency. You can track these customer service metrics directly from your LiveAgent account. 

Even when you outsource to external live chat operatives, you still have easy access to your clients’ files, thanks to the universal inbox.

Example of a universal inbox (click to enlarge)

Powered by a built-in CRM, each chat session or message is converted into tickets and saved in one place.

Your outsourced team can still work as an extension of your car dealership without ever leaving your customers behind. That should include social media as well.

Many of the outsourced chat operatives are excellent customer service representatives and experts on the assigned subject. 


The main takeaway remains the same – there always has to be someone to answer customers’ questions. If you can do it on multiple-platforms and at lightning speed, you will be rewarded with a loyal customer base and the best ROI of any communications channel.

How to integrate live chat to your automotive dealership website? 

The integration couldn’t be easier. You don’t have to have any coding experience or be a skilled programmer to integrate live chat onto your website.

When you sign up and receive a login for your LiveAgent account, all that has to be done is simply copying and pasting a short HTML code.

That’s it—no need to download any additional software.

However, if you wish to integrate with third-party software to enhance your customer service experience, you can do that through our native or Zapier integrations.

Live chat security features 

No online website can be viewed as credible and trustworthy without appropriate security features. 

Data protection and cybersecurity are the number one priority for any enterprise that wants to be viewed as credible, trustworthy, and attract a loyal customer base.

LiveAgent’s security features will provide an extra layer of cybersecurity and data protection for your business and clients. 

Here are the security features LiveAgent provides: 

Respond at a lighting speed

Knowledgeable resources

If you want to learn more about our live chat software, head over to the academy page for additional information or check out our customer support portal.

Live chat as a part of an omnichannel help desk system

Consumers are not bound to only one communications channel and frequently jump from one to the other.

Live chat is only one part of a complex help desk system that includes ticketing, call center, social media management, and much more.

Start a conversation through a phone call, continue with email and end up with a chat conversation—all within the single interface.

LiveAgent Product Tour | Live Agent02:25Youtube video: LiveAgent Product Tour
Live Agent

The complete help desk for car dealers and its features empower your customer support to achieve higher productivity and remarkable results.

Sign up today and see an increase in your revenue and satisfaction score.

Frequently asked questions

What is live chat software?

Live chat software is a communication channel that the automotive industry can utilize and enhance its customer service efforts. It is a web-based instant messaging app in the form of a customizable chat button.

Live chat security features

LiveAgent´s free live chat software provides combined security features for the data protection and cybersecurity of its users: BAN IPs, 2-step verification, HTTPS Encryption, Multiple Data Centers, GDPR, API security.

How live chat complements phone, email support, and sales?

Phone and email are unable to match the speed of service that live chat can. Compared to the phone call and email support, chat agents can handle multiple chats simultaneously and set up automatic route distribution, all in real-time. This leads to – reduced average waiting time, lowest-customer effort, decreased volume of incoming messages, increased engagement, and improved website design.

Key live chat features for car dealerships

By following the rules of chat etiquette, agents can deliver a positive and personalized experience. Not only that, but they can generate hot leads with features like real-time typing-view, online visitors, video chat, predefined answers, canned responses, multi-language chat, pre-chat survey, internal chat, or agent ranking.

Benefits of live chat for car dealers

To show value to the customer during the five stages of the sales cycle, car dealerships can benefit from utilizing live chat. The four leading benefits: leads capture, decreasing bounce rate, improving conversion analytics, the formation of long-lasting relationships, enhanced social media presence.

How to integrate live chat to your automotive dealership website?

No additional software is required. Just sign up and login into your LiveAgent account. From there, you have to copy and paste an HTM code and integrate your live chat button on your website. If you want to enhance your customer service capabilities, you can integrate with other service systems.

Should you outsource your live chat support?

Track the customer service metrics before deciding to outsource your live chat operatives. If the results of the reports lead to outsourcing, you can still have access to your customers’ profiles, all stored in the universal inbox.

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Feature-rich free help desk software.

LiveAgent offers feature-rich help desk software with ticketing, knowledge base, call center, and live chat capabilities. They provide a free plan with unlimited agents, emails, live chats, calls, and contact forms, as well as a universal inbox for organizing communication from multiple support channels. There are no setup fees, and customer service is available 24/7. Additionally, LiveAgent's IT help desk software offers an account that is free forever, and users can create a subdomain to fit their company or team name.

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Live chat is a valuable tool for e-commerce businesses to improve customer communication and increase satisfaction. Compared to phone and email, it is a low-cost and efficient platform for support, with customizable features such as pre-chat forms, canned responses, and real-time typing view. It is a vital component for online stores to prevent cart abandonment and cross/up-selling, as well as CRM data collection and retention tactics. Skilled and knowledgeable chat agents are crucial for creating an ideal online customer experience. Integration of the live chat button is straightforward, and LiveAgent offers various security features to ensure data protection and privacy.

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Live chat for enterprise businesses

Live chat software has become an important asset for modern-day businesses that want to improve customer satisfaction. It allows real-time interaction and provides a personalized experience since it is operated by a human representative. Live chat reduces waiting times, decreases incoming message volumes, and increases engagement. Enterprise businesses can benefit from features such as universal inbox, proactive chat invitation, video chat, contact form, tags, and post-chat survey. Agents should possess certain qualities and adhere to chat etiquette guidelines to provide excellent customer service. Integrating live chat to a website is simple and quick, as it only requires copying and pasting a short HTML code.

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