Customer needs have changed.
They want state-of-the-art support now: fast and easy.
Founded in 1748, Villeroy & Boch has been producing high-quality ceramics for nearly three centuries. In 2015, their bath and wellness department added live chat to their website to assist their visitors.
Villeroy & Boch offers an Online Bathroom Planner for end consumers. This interactive experience allows people to visualize their future bathroom in 3D, after which they are redirected to a trader who takes over the execution.
Many technical questions can pop up during a planning process of a bathroom, which is why Villeroy & Boch's support team was already offering a variety of support channels, such as click-to-call, email, and phone support. "We are interested in any tool that helps us to better understand our customers, that makes it easier for them to find the right product, or answers their questions", explains Volker Krumrey, Villeroy & Boch's Online Lead Manager.
To advance in this area, they were looking for another channel. "Customer needs have changed. They want state-of-the-art support: fast and easy. Live chat seemed like the way to go."
Multiple live chat providers were compared and evaluated by the Online Marketing, IT, and Customer Service departments. "We were looking for a solution with an easy technical integration", Volker recalls, "with high usability for the service team, and built on modern technology so that it would keep running smoothly on future browser versions as well."
After implementation, customers quickly embraced the channel for its straightforward way of communication. "In an email you need to stick to a specific format, more like you're writing a letter", says Volker.
With chat, everything's more simple. It's no problem to send a small message for clarification. But above all, customers love the chat because it allows them to reach the right person directly.
And while initially some in the service team were sceptical, they soon realized the benefits live chat had to offer. "At first, they were afraid they wouldn't be able to handle an extra channel. But by slowly expanding it, everyone gradually got used to it and they enjoy working with it now."
Chat is currently Villeroy & Boch's prioritized service channel. "We initially tried answering chat while on the phone", Volker explains, "but customers realize that you're not paying full attention. Now our service agents sign off on the phone when they receive a chat. We want to always answer our chats as fast as possible."
Villeroy & Boch is a large manufacturer of bathroom and tableware products, with the company headquarters located in Mettlach, Germany. Looking back on a history spanning 270 years, Villeroy & Boch is one of the longest-established European brands.