5 Live Chat Solutions for Small Businesses
Live chat can keep users of your website engaged; answer queries at the point of sale and offer an immediate customer support solution. If you have a live chat solution installed, it’s also easier to monitor the behaviour of your visitors on your website and thus offer a service which better meets their needs.
What has held many small businesses back from using live chat in the past has been the cost involved and the complexity of the systems, which are often targeted towards much larger enterprises. However, there is good news as now a range of services are available which offer all the benefits of live chat at an affordable price.
Let’s look at five live chat solutions to find the best fit for your business.
- My LiveChat
If you are very hesitant about dipping your toe in the water with live chat, a free option where you can trial its benefits might suit you best. My LiveChat offers such a free service which includes all the essential features to get you started. Your in-house customer support staff can run multiple chat sessions at a time; they can set up pre-prepared answers for those frequently asked questions; they can send transcripts of the conversations by email, and they can even retain a chat history.
An extra boon to My LiveChat is that it can be personalised to feature your logo and even allows you to customize automated messages to create a good fit with your in-house branding.
Olark is one of the better known live chat services and as pricing starts at just $15 per month it’s affordable for most businesses. A very big benefit to Olark is that your customer service staff can prioritise who to interact with on your website. This can be the difference between losing and gaining a sale if they monitor those people in danger of abandoning their cart.
It’s possible to see how long visitors have been browsing and where they have been spending their time. Therefore, if you can answer questions on the spot to help customers decide on a purchase, it can be a big boost to driving sales.
WhosOn is another service which promises to help you lower cart abandonment rates, claiming they can reduce this figure by ten percent. Your customer service staff will be able to monitor website visitors from entry to the website and then follow their progress as they browse. If a customer has questions or is hesitant about making a decision, this is the perfect time to step in and ask if they need assistance, much as you would do on a shop floor.
The information gathered can also help you to make changes to the navigation of your website, especially if you discover areas where customers are finding it difficult to understand what’s available or points where visitors persistently leave your site. There is a free trial available for the WhosOn service and you can also contact them directly for a customized pricing quote.
Some businesses won’t just need a standalone live chat service but will also want to integrate it with their workflow. This is where SnapEngage proves valuable as it can integrate with more than 20 business apps, from CRM software such as Salesforce through to helpdesk systems like ZenDesk, and even project management apps such as Basecamp and Jira. If you have a slightly larger organisation, this helps to ensure your customers are being cared for at every point in their lifecycle. You can interact not just when the initial sale is made but at all points, helping to nurture them for the long term so they become repeat buyers.
A bonus is that you can take the chat service to where your customers are and engage live with your audience on Facebook. Starting at £46 per month this is still a viable option for many businesses.
LiveEngage is the perfect solution for the long term as it allows you to scale the service as your business grows. With packages starting at £37 per month you can always upgrade to additional services as you need them, meaning that even a business with a small initial budget can sign up.
The focus of LiveEngage is about making things as easy as possible for your customers. This means they can contact you not only on their desktop but also on mobile devices using an app for iOS and Android or via your mobile web. There is also additional functionality available with this service. Customers can give feedback by rating the customer service representative they spoke to; both customers and staff can view real-time progress of issues, and conversations can be resumed even if the internet connection drops for any reason – which helps to keep potential clients engaged.