Pros and Cons of Adding Live Chat to Your Web Site

Posted by | April 14, 2017 | Digital Strategy | No Comments

Live Chat platforms have been around for a very long time. Back when they were introduced, implementing them was complicated and required a programmer. This is not longer the case. Attracting qualified visitors to your web site can be expensive. Now that implementation of live chat services is easier, should you reconsider adding this feature? We have provided some pros and cons to help you to reach your own decision.

Pros

Superior To Phone Support: If a member of your team does not know the answer to a specific question, they can ask a colleague without the visitor hearing it.  This results in better confidence that the person they are chatting with knows all the answers.

No More Annoying Menus: It is typically fast to get a hold of someone on chat then it is via telephone.  There are no annoying menus to have to go through which in and of itself annoys your customers/clients.  

Multitasking: Chat agents/operators are usually able to serve three or even more people simultaneously.

Unfortunate Accent Truth: Your best and brightest support people may have foreign accents.  Unfortunately, there is a unjustified, subconscious feeling customers/clients assume have when talking with someone with an accent.  There is no accents in chat.

No long distance: If your customer/client base is global, chat avoids long distance fees.  

Data Passing:  Many chat services allow you to forward files in real time during the chat session.

Analytics: You get real time insights into the performance of your agent/operators.

You Can Initiate:  You can politely initiate a chat if you see someone struggling rather than hoping they reach out to you first.  

On/Off Switch: When you are unavailable, you just click a button and the chat initiation button goes away or is replaced by a web form.

 

Cons

Cost: There is a paid subscription associated with the best Live Chat platforms.  While there are free live chat options (you get what you pay for), you still need to pay someone to implement it correctly.

Chat Disdain:  Some people just do not like online chatting.  They are more comfortable using more traditional means.

Elegant Implementation: The chat feature needs to appear to be a seamless part of your web site.  Make sure you can customize the chat windows with your brand’s colors and fonts for a consistent experience.

Salesy: Some people feel online chat is too salesy or cheesy.

Mobile Finger Fumblers: Mobile visitors may not be able to support live chat or may find it frustrating to use the mobile keyboard.   

Prank Chatters: Spammers or visitors with mischievous agendas will prank chat you.  Frankly, the same issue exists for traditional customer support options.

Fast Response:  You must make the commitment to always respond quickly.  Otherwise, you should not implement chat as more harm will be done than good.

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