Advance Your eCommerce Store With Live Chat Vol.3

After explaining what live chat is, what it does and how it should be used, it is time to mention who provides the software and what businesses over the world think about it. In our third and final post, we will discuss two major subjects:

  • 5 live chat providers of our choice

  • Examples of businesses that are using live chat

We have tested what each provider offers, what their strong sides are and how their services differ when compared to each other. You will also see how companies have adopted live chat and how their customer support is going after implementing the feature.

Popular Live Chat Providers

The following list does not represent our preference or the positions according to the market share of each provider.

#1 LiveChat

LiveChat have flexible payment plans that go from Starter and Regular for smaller businesses, to Team and Enterprise that are suitable for bigger companies. Their advanced packs consist of more features and special options such as staffing prediction, multiple brandings, work scheduler and product training.

The biggest names on their customer list are AirAsia, Samsung, Orange and ING among more than 12,000 businesses from 130 countries.

Functionality. LiveChat’s software has an option to gather information from customers using surveys, which can be used for marketing purposes. One negative side here is that it lacks real-time language translation, but you can select from the 34 languages that the application has been translated to.

The application offers easy sharing of documents and technical data with clients and that improves the odds of resolving an issue better and faster. You can also discuss subjects with other agents through the chat without the customer seeing the conversation.

Monitoring. You will know relevant information about customers before your support team engages them in conversation. Depending on their IP address, browser, keywords or referring websites that led them to your store, you can make a very accurate assumption of what they might need.

If they log in with a Facebook account, you will have the chance to view their public profile. Using all of that detailed data, you can also block a user's access to your website in case they are only there to spam or engage in inappropriate chatter.

Integration. The accessibility to social media can extend your reach to customers on Twitter, Facebook and other platforms. For marketing purposes, the integrated Google Analytics is a reliable way to gather valuable information regarding your users’ behavior and preferences.

Applications like Zendesk, SugarCRM and Salesforce are also able to work with the software. This offers connection between your data platforms and live chat features for access to past information and customer communication history.

#2 Zopim

The Free and more affordable Basic packs are designed for individual business owners or starting teams. With the Basic, you have unlimited chats and widget customization to match the design of your website. The Advanced and Premium packs are suitable for advanced businesses who need real functionality such as real-time translation and API customization.

The bigger brands that take advantage of Zopim’s services are Philips, Avast, Hyundai and Vodafone.

Functionality. The visitor grouping function is useful when you are trying to filter users and balance the effort of your agents. There are groups of visitors who just came to the site, and groups of those who have clicked the chat icon, signaling they are in need of immediate assistance.

Each widget has a separate color that helps differentiate between them for easier and faster workflow. Depending on what your customers are viewing, their information, location and time spent on a certain page, you will be able to set conditions for inviting them to chat.

Monitoring. You have access to all of the technical and personal information about your visitors - from name, email, past chats and IP address to location, type of browser, device and OS. This gives your marketing department what they need for product selection and campaigns.

Integration. The access you will have to their JavaScript API and REST API will let you make unlimited customizations. You can also export data to third party applications that you have built to manage live chat activities. Furthermore, you have integration capabilities with platforms like NetSuite, Zendesk, SugarCRM, Salesforce as well as Google Analytics for additional data feed to your marketing & sales teams.

#3 LiveHelpNow

LiveHelpNow decided to go with a pricing calculator, instead of pre-made packs. You can select all of the features you want and make the purchase using your own judgment. There is also an option allowing you to see the cost breakdown and all of the small costs for each feature you add. LiveHelpNow are working with some big clients like Dell, HP and NBC.

Real-time translation allows the customer service agents to communicate freely with users from all over the world on their native languages. For some new users, the high level of customization that the platform offers may even seem a bit over the top, but more advanced users will find it useful.

Functionality. The filter system is an addition that helps separate clients from those who are looking for sales, technical support or billing. The application uses the current page the visitor is viewing by sending each user to the appropriate department.

Their Whisper function is a feature that gives all chat agents, managers and administrators access to any open chat so that the training process for agents can be easier. If the customer’s questions require a more experienced agent, the system allows them to access the chat almost instantly.

Monitoring. LiveHelpNow offer functions that track navigation history, keyword analysis, location of each customer and more - all in real time.This gives your agents tons of information about the personal data of your users and their browsing history. All of this information can be shared between agents for improved workflow.

Integration. Google Analytics and AdWords will show you the information about each visitor including the browser they are using as well as the keywords and advertisements that led them to your website. Combined together, they will help you track the success of your customer support and sales, letting you improve your ROI by making necessary adjustments wherever needed.

Integrating CRM platforms like Salesforce, SugarCRM and Zendesk allows you to view chat logs and keep track of the communication between departments and management.

#4 Olark

All of the packs include the core features of Olark’s software. Their packs consist of Bronze, Gold, Platinum and Ultimate, come at relatively high prices, but include features like support over the phone.

Some of their most known customers are WordPress, ShippingEasy, Buffer and Product Hunt, and more than 10,000 other customers from over 150 countries.

Functionality. The targeted chat is a tool that helps differentiate between users who visit certain pages and help you engage them according to the time they spend on your website. There is a co-browsing function that lets you see what appears on the customer's screen and enter certain data without having to use additional applications or download extra features.

The offline functionality allows customers to leave messages so that you will never miss a potential sale. It collects information and feedback while agents are away. Regarding languages, there is no real-time translation, but most of the text language can be customized via their API.

Monitoring. By simply hovering over a visitor, you will see a lot of valuable information like their personal and technical details. There is a function for statistics and reports that can be transferred through departments. You also have Google Analytics integrated, which shows up to five visitors at the same time.

Integration. With support for mobile devices and access to the JavaScript API, Olark offer a customization range for appearance, themes, colors as well as text language. The CRM and Helpdesk platforms that are compatible include Salesforce, Zendesk, Highrise, Webhooks and Assistly.

#5 SnapEngage

The software provided by SnapEngage offers access to specific information about the weather conditions at the location of the customer you are chatting with. The application has simple usability and pleasant appearance.

They have three packs – Business, Plus and Premier. Their customer base is not to be underestimated with names like PBS, CBS, T-Mobile and Moz.

Functionality. Their interface is expandable in order to fit your working environment, which also helps with the co-browsing function that transfers information between agent and customer.

SMS communication maintains the user-friendly functionality of the entire software and allows to extend the reach to customers using mobile devices. SnapEngage also offer good connectivity over social media platforms for additional information about customers and access to their public profiles.

Monitoring. Team leaders and managers will have real-time access to a dashboard giving them a clear visibility over the conversations being lead between users and agents. Monitoring this activity helps them make adjustments to the workflow and instructions for operators. It also gives valuable information regarding what clients want to know about the products.

Integration. SnapEngage takes intelligent integration seriously by making their software compatible with a lot of CRM platforms including Zendesk, Salesforce, Highrise, Microsoft Dynamics and Google Analytics.

The entire appearance of the interface can be customized according to the colors and theme of your website. They have optimized their software for customers who are on the go with mobile devices. Asynchronous Loading is the method they use for page speed optimization which makes the chat perform quickly without slowing down the website.

Implementing the software into your web store

Every provider tries to make the installation of such software as easy and straightforward as possible. Most of them require you to simply copy and paste their code to the source of your website.

Things with SnapEngage are a bit different as they require you to re-insert the code if you make any changes to the UI appearance. LiveHelpNow offer the opportunity for a live demo that shows the installation and the various plugins for the content management systems, but you have to schedule it since spots are limited.

Why businesses use live chat?

1. BBB

Speaking of customer service, BBB is the perfect example that can emphasize on how valuable the live chat can be. After choosing this to be one of their methods for keeping fluent communication with consumers, Deanna Liberti, Vice President of Operations at BBB Boston said that the live chat was easy to deploy and manage with very little issue on the user end.

What were the results after the implementation?

According to Deanna Liberti, as soon as the tool went live, their users started chatting immediately, and has proven to be quite successful. BBB now handles an average of 1,200 chats and their users are capable of accessing the needed information much faster.

2. The North Face

Even companies with decades of experience in their field like The North Face can benefit from the innovations in customer service tools. To remain among the leaders, everyone has to adapt. After accommodating the live chat as a part of their customer service program, they started noticing immediate improvements in the communication potential among their staff. This helped them modify the training of employees to deliver more informative and effective customer support.

Were they happy with the outcome?

Since they specialize in winter equipment, they noticed an increase from 4,000 chats a month during the summer to a stunning 17,000 during the cold season. The support itself became much more detailed and effective over time, which allowed a continuing increase of efficiency for this customer service channel.

Mike Blaine, Director of Customer Service at The North Face admitted that this feature is "enabling them to provide more detailed information that consumers need in a concise manner."

3. Easycredit

If there is one industry that needs definite improvements and more flow in the customer service departments, it is the banking sector. The implementation of a better support strategy has the potential of making a breakthrough among the excessive response time and bureaucracy regarding one of the most important and vital aspects of our lives – finance.

Easycredit actually chose the easy way and became one of the early users of live chat as a method of delivering a more comprehensive customer service in a simpler manner. Attracting customers for financial services is far from being easy, which is why they needed much faster and reliable support that could emphasize their swift approach to online loans.

The impact was notable and according to them, customer satisfaction had an increase from 81% to 93% very soon after starting to use live chat. The Customer Service Manager at Easycredit, Babel Poli said that one of the most beneficial advantages of the feature was "the simplicity in usage and design."

4. Nju Mobile

For a young telecom company like Nju Mobile, offering instant access to information about their services is of great use for boosting sales and convenience for customers. Accommodating live chat has been very important for gaining more new clients and the eCommerce reports that are available in the platform give them the insights they need to tweak their future strategy.

Anita Patla, the Team Manager at CCIG happily admits that “The accessibility of chat helps to answer customer questions quickly, which often encourages them to place an order before the conversation ends.” This is not the only perk for Anita's team because the features of live chat give them new monitoring options for improving evaluate agents' performance and work on constantly improving their approach to customers.

Final thoughts

When you learn how live chat works and how it can be used properly, it can do miracles for your business. Each of the providers offers a free trial period, during which you can test their software and see if you are pleased with the outcome. We will be happy to hear what you think about the live chat, how it works for you and whether it meets your criteria. Post any questions you might have in the comments section below and we will help with any information we can!

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