Ask Professor Tux: When should I use canned chat responses?

Not every situation calls for canned responses, but Professor Tuxington is here to explain when you should – and should not – use canned response in your chat message.

Canned chat responses can be a huge benefit for websites but are underutilized.

When used correctly, it can help operators answer questions efficiently and effectively without losing that personal touch customers still demand.

So what situations would call for canned responses, and when should chat operators avoid them? Professor Tuxington has you covered.

When should it be used:

  • Answer basic questions. These answers may include the company address, business hours, websites, contact details, general pricing, or typical FAQs. You can also easily include links to the related web pages as well.
  • To share links and answers to popular questions. Lucky Orange utilizes canned responses for questions regarding integration guides or how to pass through custom user data. We also include links to the related help documentation for easier access.
  • For personable introductions and sign-offs. Some of our users have found that it’s helpful to create canned responses for an easier introduction or sign-off. Just be mindful to keep it personable!
  • Professionally respond to misdirects. Did someone find your website while looking for something with a similar business name? A canned response can nicely address the mistake.
  • Share recent videos, webinar replays, or upcoming webinar events. Avoid creating a shortened link if possible to keep your canned response feeling as genuine and spontaneous as possible.

When should it not be used

  • Don’t use canned responses for the entire conversation. Limit it to one or two canned response per chat conversation.
  • Canned responses aren’t for cutting corners and rushing to close a chat. It’s just not going to work.
  • Don’t send if it’s not the right response. If the canned response doesn’t answer the customer’s question, it’s not going to be effective and only confuse – or even anger – the customer.
  • If the response sounds robotic, just don’t bother with it. Even in the age of bots, customers still want more human interaction and less automation.
  • You don’t have the right answer. A canned response isn’t meant to eliminate actual interaction with customers. If the question goes beyond the scope of the canned response or doesn’t really fit, don’t jam the round peg into the square hole.
  • There are too many canned responses. Instead of loading hundreds of canned responses for your operators, thin out the list and train operators on answers instead. They shouldn’t have to spend two minutes searching for the right answer.Canned responses can be an excellent addition to your chat strategy, but as beneficial as it can be, make sure you use canned responses well.Basically, don’t use a canned response if the customer question isn’t clear, you’re rushed, or there’s not a relevant response available. It’s just as important to know when not to send a canned response as it is to know when to send one.

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