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A work-from-home chat agent offers customer service through online chat software instead of the phone. They can answer questions, troubleshoot, or offer training and support to prospects and customers through the website or social media accounts.

Online customer support is a type of work-from-home job where a chat agent provides customers with solutions to their problems. Some examples of a live chat agent’s responsibilities are software or hardware troubleshooting, refund processing, and assisting with account inquiries.

Besides financial and tech, what industries use chat agents? What are the typical job requirements? Are there benefits for work-from-home chat agents regardless of their employment status? What should a customer service agent do while communicating with angry customers?

What Is A Chat Agent?

A live chat agent is a customer service representative that solves various problems for customers via chat in real time. Customer service reps assist customers by giving information about the company’s service or product, resolving issues, and escalating inquiries to their supervisor or other departments when needed.

Work-from-home chat agent is a contact option

A chat agent is also sometimes called a customer service agent, a customer support agent, or a technical support specialist. Some examples of businesses that use chat agents are:

  • Automobile manufacturers
  • Banks
  • E-commerce websites
  • Online course providers
  • Private healthcare providers
  • Retail concerns
  • Software companies
  • Social media companies
  • Travel companies

What Types Of Functions Can A Chat Agent Handle?

Chat lines are handy as they can offer customers a quick answer without calling in and possibly be put on hold.

Depending on the company, chat agent job responsibilities may include:

  • Basic or advanced customer support
  • Identifying customer pain points and responding accordingly
  • Resolving disputes/complaints
  • Tech support (software or hardware troubleshooting)
  • Order, return, and refund processing
  • Scheduling appointments
  • Upselling and cross-selling products
  • Providing customer feedback to your team members or other teams within the company
Work-from-home chat agent handles customer problems

What Are The Benefits Of Being A Chat Agent?

‌Online chat jobs have many benefits, such as:

  • Work-at-home chat agent jobs can be done remotely, whether from the comfort of your own home or any other place where you feel the most productive.
  • Training is offered on a company-by-company basis, so even candidates without much experience in the field are taught how to maintain great customer satisfaction.
  • These remote jobs are usually full-time or part-time, and both positions have some advantages. Due to having to commit to a certain number of hours, customer care jobs are rarely suitable for independent contractors who want to work when they can..
  • If you’re a part-timer, you can enjoy a flexible schedule by taking shorter shifts.
  • Full-timers may be eligible for health insurance, paid time off, paid overtime, and other employee benefits.
  • Businesses may offer competitive pay, bonuses, and opportunities for growth to both part-time and full-time employees.
  • If you dislike phone calls, a work-from-home chat agent role may be a great fit since you don’t have to take inbound calls (like at a call center) or make outbound calls (if you’re a sales agent).
  • As a contact center representative, you’ll learn transferable skills that you can use in other fields as well as your personal life.

What Are The Requirements For A Customer Service Chat Agent?

While some live chat agent jobs may require a bachelor’s degree, they usually only necessitate a high school diploma. Average job postings typically state you need at least two to three years of experience in customer service. Alternatively, look for entry-level jobs that don’t require previous work experience.

Other requirements include:

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Fluency in English
  • Effective problem-solving skills
  • Reliable internet connection
  • Basic computer knowledge
  • Fast, accurate typing skills (the required typing speed ranges from 40 to 60 WPM, rarely 80 WPM)
  • The ability to multitask
  • The ability to work independently in a fast-paced environment and be self-motivated

Besides the listed requirements, having a great attitude and being empathetic are useful soft skills for this position.

How Do I Become A Customer Service Chat Agent?

During your job search, you’ll notice you may qualify for various customer support positions even if you haven’t had previous experience. You may have done in-person or remote customer-related work, which is a plus. Make sure to highlight any similar on-site roles, such as retail store manager, restaurant server, or sales associate in your resume. Relevant remote work includes virtual assistance, data entry, content moderation, and online reservation.

Decide whether you want to do this full-time or part-time and apply to jobs that match your expectations. Remember to subscribe to job alerts on various job boards to get notified when a new online chat agent position is open.

Keep in mind the typical interview process assesses not just your expertise, but also your personality. Employers often conduct a behavioral interview for customer service, so you can prep by reading common questions and example answers.

How Do Chat Agents Handle Irate or Dissatisfied Customers?

According to live chat statistics, a work-from-home chat agent manages 30 to 50 chats per day, which can be a lot on a bad day. Unfortunately, a lot of people messaging customer support are often frustrated and rude.

Here are some beneficial de-escalation techniques a customer experience specialist can use with difficult customers:

  • Identify and mirror the complaint to demonstrate a complete understanding of the problem.
  • Validate the customers’ frustration.
  • Keep calm while showing confidence that you can and will resolve the issue.
  • Use scripted responses instead of improvising, while you continue actively listening to the other person.
  • Although you should stick to the script, avoid giving automated responses and putting customers on hold.
  • Simplify a complex problem by breaking it down into smaller pieces and work on resolving those step by step.

After the resolution, you may offer compensation (as per your company’s guidelines) in the form of a discount, refund, coupon for future purchases, or even a free gift. This protects the company’s reputation and helps with customer retention, especially if you’re a ‌sales representative.

What Is An Average Salary For Live Chat?

According to live chat agent pay statistics, the national average salary for the position is $30,151 per year. This amounts to a $14 hourly rate. Businesses located in high-paying cities such as Santa Clara and San Francisco tend to pay more — about $3,000 per month.

What Software is Usually Used For Chat Agents?

Online chat agents can use a variety of live chat software. The best one depends on the company’s needs, team size, and other factors. Overall, LiveChat is among the best due to its plugin, automation, and many other features.

The Elephant In The Room – AI

Many chat positions are at risk of being taken over by AI or artificial intelligence. Chats often start out with questions directed to chatbots that can respond to basic questions, such as “When will my order be delivered?” If the customer needs more help, the question will pass to a human. Anyone who deals with customer service at knows the system very well!

Recent developments in AI include conversational AI, which can answer more intricate questions in many languages and even make recommendations to customers. AI is likely to make inroads in taking over basic chat jobs, but humans are currently needed in the mix to handle more complex customer service situations.

Chatbots intesect work-from-home chat agent jobs

Where Can You Find Jobs Listings For Chat Agent Jobs?

Besides job boards, online chat support job opportunities are available at many remote work-oriented companies. Some of these are:

Alexandra S.

Alexandra has started her freelance career in 2014. Over the years, she has worked as a copywriter, transcriptionist, and translator. She is a huge supporter of working remotely, as she is the most productive in her cozy home office. Remote work and setting her own work hours also gives her the best work-life balance.

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