How Housecall Pro leverages live chat & automation for growth
With Roland Ligtenberg, Co-founder & SVP of Growth & Innovation and Angel Aspeytia, Chat Team Manager
At a glance
Inbound conversations automatically resolved by Resolution Bot
Lift in lead to paid conversion rate for live chat vs. other marketing channels
To communicate with the tens of thousands of home service professionals using their platform, Housecall Pro relies on Intercom. By utilizing a combination of live chat and automation for sales and support, Housecall Pro has been able to scale their growth while maintaining a personal relationship with their customers.
When Roland Ligtenberg co-founded Housecall Pro one of his first priorities was to look for a solution to talk to his customers and learn more about them.
“Since the start, we’ve made it one of our core values to maintain a very close relationship with our customer, the Pro. The customer service standards our Pros typically receive in their industry is waiting on phone queues on hold or 24-48 hour email support ticket response times. We didn’t just want to offer something better, but 10x better, and implemented Intercom to deliver on that promise.”
As the company has grown in employees, customers, and revenue, Intercom has been there the whole way as the central solution for communicating with their customers. Now, Housecall Pro has a dedicated chat team of 8 people completing over 10,000 conversations a month!
“We use Intercom for support outreach with our customers and they have Intercom integrated into our app and web portal that they use to schedule jobs as well,” explains Angel Aspeytia, Manager of Tech Support at Housecall Pro. This is what makes Housecall Pro’s story unique. The platform enables thousands of mobile service businesses to schedule jobs, communicate with their customers, manage payments, online booking, reputation management and more, all while supporting them through “the blue chat bubble or BCB” as Intercom has become affectionately known by their customers.
“In the exclusive Facebook group that we have for our Pros, Intercom is known as the blue chat bubble and it’s where our customers know they can get the answers to their questions.”
Scaling customer support with Intercom through automation
“We started out as a company that had the mission just to provide an easy way for our customers to chat with us, but then we figured out that we could do so much more than live chat and Intercom has played a role in facilitating that growth and sense of community,” Angel explains.
In the past twelve months, Housecall Pro has seen its chat volume almost double. “We thought a lot about whether or not we should start to offer phone support but the reason we stuck to Intercom is because we can handle so many customers at one time and asynchronously versus having to ask them to wait on hold for their turn,” says Angel.
As a SaaS platform, the efficiencies gained by leveraging Intercom allows Housecall Pro to pass down the cost savings and be the most competitively priced field service management app on the market.
The Housecall Pro team has also deployed Resolution Bot to help them tackle common queries as their conversation volume continues to grow and are now seeing around 15% of conversations being resolved by Resolution Bot.
Angel says “Resolution Bot has been really helpful in answering simple questions. It means we can answer the easy questions we get quickly before they even get to our teams so that we can focus on more complex questions that require more of our time.”
Organically expanding use with live chat for sales
As Housecall Pro saw its chat volume increase, there was a natural increase in the number of people now using the messenger to enquire about buying a Housecall Pro subscription instead of just looking for support and so, the Chat Intercept team was born.
“As the volume of sales related chats increased, it only made sense to dedicate sales resources to these chats,” Alyssa Moretti, On-boarding Specialist at Housecall Pro explains.
The team’s goal is to shorten the sales cycle by using live chat as a channel to close deals quickly. Through Intercom, the support team is able to triage conversations, pass internal notes and assign sales-related conversations to the Chat Intercept team inbox swiftly.
In fact, as sales chat volume has grown, they’ve also implemented task bots to automatically triage support and sales conversations and pre-qualify leads. Now, a sales rep can jump right into the conversation with greater context into their industry, company size, and plan they are looking to purchase.
With an average first response time of under five minutes, the team can quickly follow-up with leads that are ready to buy or set up a demo for prospects looking for a more traditional sales process. In most cases, the Chat Intercept team can close an enrollment (deal) within one hour when qualified leads proactively reach out to talk to sales.
By capitalizing on this low hanging fruit, the sales team is able to run a more efficient sales process and shorten the sales cycle for qualified leads. Right now, live chat as a channel represents about 10% of total enrollments a month for Housecall Pro. But the results speak for themselves:
On average, Housecall Pro has seen that deals driven through live chat close 27.5% faster compared to other channels. The lead to paid conversion rate for live chat is now 35% higher than any other marketing channel Housecall Pro is utilizing.
Customer satisfaction remains world-class even as volume grows
Housecall Pro prides itself on enabling its Pros to be able deliver an amazing customer experience for their customers and always aims to lead by example. One way they seek to do this is through a drive to improve customer engagement and really showcase the benefits of “the blue chat bubble”.
Since kicking off this initiative, Housecall Pro has maintained an overall happiness rating of above 90% for all conversations.
“We've noticed an increase in the amount of people who are actually willing to rate a conversation and now we have some team members who are regularly getting 100% rated conversations with an overall happiness rating of 91% on average but some are even higher at 96-99%,” Angel explains.
Through using Intercom, Housecall Pro has been able to remove reactive phone support and switch 100% to chat. As a result, they have been able to improve the customer experiences for both their customers and their customers’ customers and reallocate their team resources to continue fuelling their growth.
As head of growth, Roland sees Intercom as a pivotal platform in Housecall Pro’s toolbox, “We love leveraging new features Intercom continuously develops because it allows us to innovate and build automations to aid our exponential growth. The value it allows us to deliver to our Pros throughout their entire lifecycle is invaluable. Happy Pros provide us with the feedback that unlock unique product insights that gives us a massive competitive advantage on our mission to build the best platform for home service businesses.”
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