The internet and e-commerce have changed just about every industry. Businesses small and large have embraced this change with varying degrees of success. So how can a local business compete against much larger national companies? “With creativity!” says Nathan Cain, the marketing director of Matt’s Building Materials.
Matt’s Cash & Carry, as most people remember it, is entering its 48th year in business. Over the years they’ve had to change and adapt many times. Today, people expect to be able to go online and find exactly what they are looking for. The building materials industry is no different. Matt’s recognized this and began putting together a plan. Early on, they realized that creating a website that included pictures, prices, and descriptions for all 25,000 of their products would be prohibitively expensive. They had to come up with a way that would give their customers the information they needed and still be able to show a positive return on their investment.
In September of this year, Matt’s Building Materials launched its new website with a specific goal to harness the power of conversation. In addition to a sleek new look, the new website’s key feature is a chat app. “Chatting with customers who visit our website allows us to utilize our most valuable resource—our employees,” explains Nathan. “We are blessed to have a hardworking staff that is knowledgeable about our products and knows how to use them. When a customer visits our website and does a live chat, we can ask them pertinent questions that help determine what product would work best for their situation, and give them information that even the best e-commerce websites out there can’t. We can provide customers with estimates, and even arrange delivery. Since we started testing the chat feature a few months ago, we have already had hundreds of conversations with customers. It’s very exciting.”
Online live chat services are not new in other industries, but until now, not offered in the Valley by a full-service building materials supplier like Matt’s Building Materials. An eDigital Customer Service Benchmark survey revealed that 73% of customers reported the highest satisfaction levels when contacting a business via live chat, compared to 61% for email and 44% for telephone. A live chat service combines the benefits of phone and email but is far superior in reducing wait time for responding to customer requests.
Matt’s Building Materials has expanded to three locations (Pharr, San Benito, and Palmview, Texas) and with a 48-year history, is the oldest family-owned and operated building materials company in the Rio Grande Valley. The company’s knowledgeable and friendly staff is almost entirely bi-lingual and caters to all types of customers, from Valley natives to Winter Texans. Its addition of a new website and live chat services is one more example of how Matt’s Building Materials’ superior customer service is constantly being improved to better serve all customers.
Go to mattsbuildingmaterials.com to submit your shopping list, get estimates, or ask questions using their live chat services. Matt’s Building Materials has high hopes that customers will find their employees just as helpful online as they do in person.