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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Importance of utilizing Live Chat as an online marketing tool

Live Chat is one of the easy to implement tool that help a business in providing a personalized experience to visitors of it's website. In the jargon world, it is a tool helping in conversion optimization!

Who doesn't like getting the information directly in a chat instantly. When you install a chat application in your website, you are not imposing anything  on your visitors - they don't have to install the messenger nor do they have to compulsorily chat. Of course implementation of live chat depends on how mature the organization and how much can you invest in the sales force. For example a real estate firm may be able to handle it with just one operator while an e commerce firm may need to increase its work-force depending on the traffic. Also how long at least one operator is available to answer questions is also important; since the website is live 24X7; there is always a chance that you may get a query in non-official hours.

Main advantages of implementing a live chat application are -
  1. Understanding buyer behavior
  2. Understanding buyer intention and fill the sales funnel
  3. Support customers or prospective customers
  4. Reduced call center support system since an agent can handle multiple chats at the same time
Let's understand quickly the technical side of implementing a live chat. Once again Javascript comes to rescue. We just need to put another set of code like the tag implementation. You may wonder how live chat vendors are able to understand user behavior? once again cookies comes into picture. (Learn more here). At a high level, the operators are given a platform interface to monitor any chat initiations while a visitor visits the website. This pro-active type of chat initiation is  the normal usage. There are provisions to deliberately pop up with a custom message (based on various criteria) to help the website visitor. This is known as broadcast chat. In case the operators are not online, there are options to even send queries over a form (this is typically same as the forms similar to contact us or registration).
Another aspect of a live chat tool is that it is a registration form in disguise offering a marketer not only an understanding about user behaviors(with its analytics capabilities), improved interaction (with the live chat support); but also opportunities for options like sending brochures, sign-up for newsletters and so on.
Now a days, live chat application vendors are offering even mobile app based solution; thus providing an opportunity to overcome the missed opportunities during non-official hours or unattended chats.Similarly some sophisticated vendors provide capabilities like integrated VOIP possibilities, ticket management, and other integration.
Some of the important live chat vendors are
  • Live Chat Inc
  • Live Persoon
  • Snap Engage
  • Click Desk
  • Zopim
Chat Tool Tester website provides a good analysis/comparison on major chat vendors available in the market. Do check it out! Here is another interesting article for you to read about making live chat working for an online business (The Art of Conversation: Using live chat to market your online business )
What do you think about live chats?


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