Co-browsing is a relatively new type of software that has been made available to businesses that need to offer customer support and guidance. Although many businesses, particularly those in the tech sector, are already using co-browsing software, some are still unaware of what it is or how it can benefit their business.
In this blog, we’re going to look at co-browsing in more detail and explain everything you need to know about this type of software – from how it works to how it could be advantageous to your business and website visitors – and answer any and all questions you might have about it.
What Is Co-browsing?
Co-browsing, also known as collaborative browsing, is a type of technology that entails giving customer support agents access to a customer’s computer to see what they’re seeing and gauge customer interactions. You can navigate through windows and applications alongside the customer, provided access has been granted.
Support agents can use their cursor to click buttons and scroll through relevant windows, as well as annotate the customer’s screen, highlight things, and even fill in forms and text fields on behalf of the customer. As a technology, co-browsing software has gained traction within the financial and technology fields due to the increased efficiency it affords in terms of a higher first call resolution rate, leading to enhanced customer satisfaction.
Co-browsing and screen sharing are often confused, but the two are very different. Screen sharing is what you might see when you have a meeting on Zoom or Microsoft Teams and someone starts to present their screen so you can see what they’re seeing. They can navigate to any window on their computer and you can see it, but you can only observe. You can’t click buttons, scroll the screen, or fill in fields. With this in mind, co-browsing is a far more engaging type of customer service tool.
How Do Co-browsing Solutions Work?
Co-browsing is a type of software that uses the internet to help customer service agents navigate through customer issues in real time. With this type of software, you can get a live feed onto a customer’s computer to see what they’re seeing and navigate or make changes in real time to resolve issues or service queries.
In order for a co-browsing session to begin, customers need to grant agents access. For safety and privacy, co-browsing doesn’t give you control over a customer’s whole computer – you’ll only have access to the windows and/or applications they’ve enabled co-browsing on. For example, if your business provides an app and your customer is having trouble on the app, co-browsing will only work on the app. You can’t navigate through their overall computer.
Although co-browsing falls into the bracket of software, it isn’t necessary to install anything to enable it. It’s a browser-based technology which means provided there’s an internet connection, there’s no need to install or download anything additional on either the customer’s side or the agents.
In terms of how co-browsing works in a practical sense, it would look something like this:
- As a business, you install a relevant plugin to your website to allow for co-browsing
- When a customer has an issue, they come onto your website and presses a button for customer support
- There is a button to enable co-browsing on the customer’s browser, and the customer presses this to provide your agent with access to their screen on the window they have open
- The customer’s screen is instantly visible, allowing agents to see and annotate, highlight, type, scroll, and click within the window they have given them access to
- Agents provide support and talk the customer through what they’re doing whilst resolving the issue
- Once the problem has been sorted, either the agent or customer can end the session
Co-browsing is entirely secure and provides an efficient way for you to help customers with more complex needs and queries.
Who Uses Co-browsing Solutions?
Co-browsing is suitable for a number of different businesses that work within the customer service sector. Whether you work in retail, technology, finance, or anything else, if you need to offer customer support, co-browsing can work for you.
It is mostly used by businesses that provide a product or service that is more complex, such as finance companies where long forms might confuse customers, but in theory, any company looking to elevate their customer service to the next level can make use of co-browsing.
Why Use Co-browsing Solutions?
There are several reasons why you might choose to use co-browsing tools and solutions, but the main reason is to provide efficient support remotely. You can reduce the length of the customer journey, create a more coherent experience for the user, solve issues faster, and perform actions on behalf of the user for a more streamlined and detailed experience.
If you find that your customer service team often struggles to understand the problems customers are having, or that it takes a while for issues to be resolved due to lapses in communication or phone support, co-browsing could be highly beneficial for you.
What Are the Benefits of Co-browsing Solutions?
There are numerous benefits to implementing co-browsing technology on your website, including:
Better customer experience
How your business deals with problems will be the difference between a good customer experience and a poor one. You’ll naturally strive for a positive experience first time for every customer, but this isn’t always possible if communication is convoluted and drawn out.
By being able to take the reins and give a real-time tutorial on how to solve problems, your customers will have a much more positive experience all round.
Increased customer retention
Getting customers is one thing, but keeping them is another. One bad experience could see a customer never use your business again. If this becomes a pattern, you may find that you can’t retain any of your customers and therefore your business will struggle as a consequence.
Co-browsing offers an efficient and speedy customer service experience, something many clients consider when deciding to stay with a company or not. It’s often not the case that a problem will turn a customer off first time, but rather how it’s dealt with. Co-browsing offers a solution to this because you can solve issues faster, providing a better experience and encouraging customers to stay with you due to your dedication to outstanding service and experience.
One customer service trend that is coming to the forefront is the need for a personalised service. No one wants a generic answer that barely answers their question – customers want an original experience.
Co-browsing puts you in direct communication with your customers which means they have access to a personalised service immediately. They’re not faced with vague solutions – you’re able to see their problem and take control to resolve it immediately.
Better customer learning
Sometimes, the same issue can crop up time and again, meaning customers need to ask you for help on several occasions. This doesn’t bode well for a positive experience and can be frustrating for everyone involved. With co-browsing, you can give a detailed, real time tutorial to customers which means they’re able to see how you’re solving the problem so they can do the same for next time.
How Can Co-browsing Solutions Help Support Agents?
It’s not just customers who can benefit from co-browsing tools – customer service agents can benefit from it, too. You are able to gain a real-time, precise insight to what your client is seeing. This means you don’t need to spend as long asking questions, and a lot of guesswork is removed.
This allows you to solve issues faster and move onto the next customer in a short time – enabling you to help more people and get through your workload more efficiently.
You also don’t need to worry about passing customers to several of your colleagues before you find them the right person to help – you can see what the problem is and direct them correctly from there, helping with the efficiency of all departments.
Are all Co-browsing Solutions Secure?
Due to the nature of co-browsing, it’s normal for customers to ask whether co-browsing is secure given that you’ll be able to press buttons and navigate certain windows and applications on their screen. Well, co-browsing is totally secure. You don’t gain access to the whole computer or laptop – you can only access and make changes on the window that the customer gives you access to. You can’t move around their laptop and take full control – so you can reassure customers that you can only access the window or application on their device that is relevant to your business, and no sensitive information is stored.
Co-browsing Solutions FAQs
Below, we’ve answered some of the most commonly asked questions surrounding collaborative browsing.
Why is co-browsing such a popular solution for customer support?
Co-browsing is gaining popularity because it offers a much faster, efficient, and comprehensive solution to customer support. It can help customers in record time and cut through the noise associated with extended communication. First call resolution rates are increased and customers get the right level of help off the bat, giving them an experience they’re happy with and enabling your agents to help more people in a shorter time frame.
How can co-browsing solutions help my company?
Co-browsing can help your company by enhancing the efficiency of your service and streamlining how you help your clients. This has a knock-on effect on customer retention and your reputation as a business. It also frees up more time for your agents and can reduce your service costs because agents are more productive.
Can co-browsing solutions improve my customer journey?
Yes, co-browsing can improve your customer journey greatly. It can reduce the time it takes to solve a problem, get your customers through to the right person to help them first time round, and enable a solution to be found in no time. This means your customers can get off the phone and enjoy your service or product faster.
What devices will co-browsing work on?
Co-browsing tools work across any internet enabled devices. It doesn’t require your customers to install any additional software – all they need is an internet connection and to provide you with permission to navigate their screen when prompted.
Find out More About Co-browsing with Vizolution
At Vizolution, we provide co-browsing solutions to businesses that need them. If you think co-browsing could work for your business and you want to find out more about it, please contact us and we’ll be happy to help.