Open All Hours? Or are you closed at Christmas?

Stay open at Christmas

We’re all looking forward to a well-earned break over Christmas and New Year, but while we relish the downtime with family and friends, for many of us running our own businesses there is a nagging voice in the back of our heads.

“What will I miss? What happens if my competitors are open while I’m closed and get that big instruction while I’m digesting my turkey?”

You get the picture. We know from experience that as the New Year approaches people slowly switch from enjoying the moment to thinking about the future. It may be looking for next summer’s holiday, or it may be starting to consider sprucing up the house ready to sell it in the spring.

Estate agents up and down the country know that last year, come Boxing Day, the number of people visiting property websites suddenly boomed, and that trend continued throughout the week.

50% of your website visitors arrive when your office is closed. You’re missing a significant number of possible enquiries.

Even in a normal week, those progressive estate agents that already have 24/7 live chat on their websites see more than 50% of all chats taking place outside of their normal business hours. Through Christmas and New Year that percentage will increase significantly which only serves to make the need for 24/7 live chat on your websites all the more critical.

Over Christmas you can collect a haul of great leads from prospective vendors seeking valuations on their homes. While your office may be closed, and your telephone lines set to answer machine, your website can still be open. These days, irrespective of whether you are a high street agent, an online agent or a hybrid agent, your customers are all online. This is where they start their journey and this is where first impressions are absolutely critical.

The results from live chat can be staggering. More enquiries, more instructions and really impressed customers.

The results can be quite staggering. Just imagine, in visiting your website they are just expecting to look at a few pages (maybe) and if the proposition looks good they may (I stress, may) make a mental note to follow up in the new year when you are reopen. They may equally just move on to another estate agent website, and another, and then another.

All the way they may be making mental notes, trying to compare who looks best, and by the time they’ve finished it’s all just a grey goo. “Which was that estate agent website I liked? Was it the red one, or maybe the one with the interactive map?”

By then, you’ve missed your chance. But if there’s 24/7 live chat, staffed by highly professional property specialist operators, the visitor may not even get as far as your competitor websites. They may accept a chat invitation, feel really good about the brilliant service, and pass over their details requesting a market appriasal.

And if your office is closed, 24/7 live chat is able to send that enquiry directly to you, wherever you are, whether it’s slumped on the sofa or taking in the sun in the Caribbean, the enquiry can still reach you.

Follow @yomdel on Twitter

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