Live Chat Software Blog

News, articles, thoughts, and comments related to e-commerce web sites. Stay up-to-date with ideas that can help your online business, and let us know how we can help you. Request A Free Trial

Portuguese language added

July 15, 2015

Again, through the great support of our large client base, we've recently added Portuguese support for our live chat service. The operator console and chat windows will now display the Portuguese language to those users/visitors that have Portuguese set as their default browser language. Live chat's enormous growth shows the usefulness of offering a way for visitors to talk with site owners live. It's the next best thing to a brick-and-mortar store!

As we've mentioned before in our live chat blog, if you'd like our service translated into another language just ask us -- WE'LL DO IT FOR FREE!

:: Labels: Portuguese, language translation services, locale browser

Italian language added

January 20, 2015

Users of our service have asked for it and we're happy to say that we now have our service available in Italian! The operator console and chat windows will now display the Italian language to those users/visitors that have Italian set as their default browser language.

As the number of users and resellers of live chat service expand, it just makes sense to offer this service in multiple languages. Plus visitors to web sites using live chat feel more comfortable seeing their native language displayed to them.

As we've mentioned before in our live chat blog, if you'd like our service translated into another language just ask us -- WE'LL DO IT FOR FREE!

:: Labels: Italian, language translation services, locale browser

Swedish language added

October 23, 2014

Users of live chat are increasingly wanting the console and chat window languages to match their locale. Although English is one of the most popular languages in the world, it's not always spoken by everyone who accesses the Internet.

Today we added Swedish to the list of languages we support. Our console and chat windows will automatically detect the browser language and show the appropriate language translation.

If you'd like our service translated into another language just ask us -- WE'LL DO IT FOR FREE! We don't charge for improvements to our service, so please continue to let us know how to make it better.

:: Labels: Swedish, language translation, locale specific

Offline & Missed Live Chat Message Notifications

August 22, 2014

Often web site visitors will leave a message using our live chat application by completing the "leave a message" form. This can happen for two reasons -- 1) an operator didn't accept a chat request from a visitor; 2) a visitor clicked the offline "chat now" image.

When a visitor submits this form operators receive notifications in two places -- within the "Operator Console", and via email directly to the operator. The email feature is useful for operators that may not monitor their live chat constantly but still need instant notification of missed chat requests.

:: Labels: missed live chat, offline notifications, operator notification

Japanese and Arabic Language Support Added

January 27, 2014

The popularity of our live chat services continues to grow! Many of our customers have requested additional native languages to display within the chat and operator consoles, and we've listened -- now with support for Japanese and Arabic.

Adding support for languages (other than English) is easy to do on our end, and there is NO additional cost to the customer to implement this. If you'd like additional language support for our live chat client and operator console please let us know and we'll do it for free!

:: Labels: language translation, live chat language support

Customizing Chat Invites

August 1, 2013

By now you've noticed how useful it is to be able to view what visitors are viewing on your web site in real time. What you may want to consider is sending visitors customized chat invites based on what they're viewing.

For instance, within the 'Operator Console' you notice a visitor is going back and forth between your FAQ (frequently asked questions) and customer service web pages. Instead of sending a generic 'chat now' image to them, you could send them a custom invite -- something like 'Do you need help? I can assist you in helping you find an answer to your question'.

By addressing the visitor directly with a custom invite message, you increase the likelihood they'll stay on your web site vs. leaving in frustration. Result: conversion, sale, lead, or just a happy customer!

Send a customized invite to your visitors by clicking on their listing within the 'Operator Console', then "send invite". You'll be prompted to enter your customized invite message to display instantly on the visitor web browser. Good luck!

:: Labels: custom invite, customized, invite, chat now

The Power Of Pro-Active Invites

March 1, 2013

As spring nears (at least for those of us located in distinctive-weather climates) and the global economy improves, our thoughts consider the important of pro-active live chat invites. With buyers are comparison-shopping more than ever, providing professional and prompt customer service becomes critical in increasing online sales.

If you haven't already, experiment with sending pro-active invites within our 'Operator Console'. Just set the timing and enable the check-box. New and existing visitors to your site will now see an invite to chat.

While we recommend setting the timing no shorter than 30 seconds, we suggest you experiment with different settings to see how your visitors react. Too short and you risk annoying them before they've had a chance to look over your products/services. Too long and they might leave!

Pro-active chat invites are a useful feature to get customer attention. They often don't see (or ignore) the chat links you have on your web site, but with the chat invite you just might get them to chat with you. Enable it today and see if it helps increase your sales.

:: Labels: proactive, pro-active, invite, chat, live chat software

The Importance Of Customer/Client Feedback

December 14, 2012

Due to the useful feedback received from our clients, we've implemented many new features into our live chat service this past year. Increased ability to customize the chat window and operator console, language translation, and performance improvements were just some of the upgrades completed recently.

Businesses often forget the importance of really 'analyzing' feedback, and putting forth a plan of action. We've all received those (post) sales or support 'feedback forms' asking how the staff had performed; yet never receive any follow-up to the feedback. It's almost as if the feedback disappeared into oblivion.

All businesses need a way to receive feedback - whether via live chat, email, or web form. Feedback is especially important if it contains a common request or complaint. Think of it this way -- if a few customers are taking the time to fill out a feedback form, how many more don't bother (and yet have the same request)?

Consider using live chat software for more than just making a sale. Listening to customer input, asking what would improve their experience with your business, and accepting feature requests all will improve the relationship (and return rate) of your customers. Happy Holidays!

:: Labels: customer feedback, input, features, translation, live chat software

Holiday E-commerce Sites - Get Your Chat On!

October 31, 2012

Fall is a busy time of year for e-commerce sites as many shoppers make online purchases for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. It's also a very busy time for us due to the thousands of web site owners expressing interest in offering live chat support on their sites.

How does live chat software help? Easy... by providing a quick and anonymous way for web site visitors to ask live questions regarding products/services. The chat is 100% web based, one-on-one, and instant. The sooner you can answer visitor questions, the less likely they'll abandon their shopping cart.

If you haven't already, try our live chat software. It's easy to implement, and our staff will offer free assistance if you run into any problems. Just click on the FREE TRIAL link at the top of this web page and you'll instantly receive information on using live chat services.

:: Labels: Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, E-commerce, live chat software

Live Chat Service - Supporting Multiple Languages

September 18, 2012

We're often asked if the pre-chat questions (for web site visitors) can be customized. The answer is yes!

We've also developed our live support system to automatically detect the primary language of the visitor web browser. The appropriate translation of the pre-chat questions occurs instantly. We've done this with the help of visitors and customers who fluently speak the language and were helpful in appropriate translation.

If you don't see that your language is supported, contact us and we'll implement the changes in our system to make it work.

:: Labels: language, translation, support, questions, pre-chat, survey

Massive Open Online Course (MOOCs) Can Benefit

September 18, 2012

What an interesting thought... to earn your college degree via online courses! While technical (and credibility) issues still need to be hammered out, it certainly shows the continued power of the Internet.

MOOCs can benefit from using live chat services due to the one-on-one nature of the chat conversations. One "professor" can have multiple interactions with online "students" to discuss course material. Each chat is private, web-based, and accessible via computer or smartphone.

Those of you looking at MOOCs should consider using live chat software. See what it can do for you today!

:: Labels: MOOC, MOOCs, distance learning, massive, open, online, course

Operator Console Make-Over Complete

August 10, 2012

Today we've released the latest version of our web-based operator (customer service) console. It was developed with the help of our customers through the useful feedback they've always provided us.

The features of this updated control panel are the same, but the layout has been improved significantly. The layout is more crisp, easier to read, and layout is simplified.

If you have any suggestions or feedback regarding this latest operator console release please let us know.

:: Labels: operator, customer, console, control panel, dashboard

Travel Industry Starts To Embrace Live Chat

May 22, 2012

With spring in the air and summer around the corner, web site visitors are increasingly using the Internet for their vacation plans. As with any e-commerce site, travelers often have questions regarding flights, hotels, and excursions.

While the uptake in live customer support had been slow for many travel sites, it has been picking up speed lately. We're frankly surprised more sites haven't implemented live support on web sites and mobile apps (Android, IPhone) due to the personal (and confusing) nature of scheduling flights and hotels.

We're always happy to provide personalized live chat for travel agencies. If you're in the travel industry, and would like to learn more about how live chat can increase vacation package sales, contact us today!

:: Labels: travel sites, industry, vacation, flights

Live Chat Software Usage Increases

February 14, 2012

Hi and Happy Valentine's Day! Today we researched "search engine" trends (via Google) to see how live chat software was faring. Not surprisingly, the popularity of offering chat services on web sites is still increasing.

2004 marked the time period where live chat services were starting to appear. Early versions were developed using installable "desktop" versions for operators - for Mac & Windows systems. But as the diversity of operating systems has proliferated, web-based console software has become the interface of choice for customer service representatives. Going into 2012, we're not seeing any slow-down in the use of our service; and we thank all our new customers!

We're often asked why web site owners should use live chat software. Without getting into fancy web site jargon, the easiest answer is it adds another opportunity for customers to ask questions about products/services. The fact that almost every major e-commerce shop online today offers some type of live chat should highlight the importance of having it on a web site. If you haven't tested our service yet, please do -- and give us feedback...

:: Labels: live chat trending, history, console

What Is The Best Live Chat Software?

December 1, 2011

Within the more popular web developer forums, a question often asked is "what is the best live chat software"? While every provider of live chat services wants to think it's their own product, the truth is that it depends on web site owners' needs.

Web site owners can implement live chat software in one of two ways -- by having their own chat "server" with the software installed on it, or by using "cloud" services (where the software is remotely hosted by the software developer). Method one provides more control, but also more management as a separate server and network will need to be provisioned -- requiring extensive technical skills. Method two - using "cloud" services - is the easiest as it only requires the owner to add a few lines of HTML to implement live chat on a web site.

We always recommend web developers/owners to "trial" live chat software before purchasing. That way the software can be extensively tested to see if it meets the needs of the site owner. If you're interested in evaluating our easily-implemented live chat services you can click on the FREE TRIAL link at the top of this blog.

:: Labels: Best live chat software, review, comparison

North Carolina Bar OK's Live Chat Services

August 19, 2011

North Carolina bar's ethics committee advised on July 15, 2011 that Firms May Deploy Live Chat Service To Talk With Visitors on Firm's Website (source: ABA/BNA Lawyers' Manual on Professional Conduct™)

It did caution lawyers not to "exploit" the information gathered through the use of live chat. This is true since much can be seen about a web site visitor as soon as they enter a web site (who referred them, what city/state they're from, computer and browser type, etc.). It probably makes sense for lawyer web sites to mention this gathering of "live" information in their terms of services (so "chatting" visitors aren't surprised by how much they know about them).

When you think about it, having live chat on a legal web site makes sense. What better way to add clients than to have the ability to answer questions (somewhat) anonymously for web visitors. Customers want to feel comfortable with the knowledge of the business before providing more personal information.

If you're a legal professional considering using live chat software on your lawyer web site, contact us and see how we can help improve your business, or sign up for a free trial on our web site to test the services instantly.

:: Labels: North Carolina, bar, lawyers, chat, conflict

"White Label" Reseller Services Update

August 8, 2011

VARs (value-added reseller) are seeing a growing demand for live chat services and due to popular demand we've made several improvements to our white label reseller program. If you're an online service provider, web host, or ISP read on!

We've made it even easier to add web sites, operators, and departments through a web-based reseller portal. Now resellers can easily manage their customer sites and determine the appropriate pricing to charge for services.

If you're an online service provider interested in reselling live chat software, visit our white label reseller page for more information.

:: Labels: reseller, white label, lable, resell, affiliate

Refresh Your Real Estate Web Site

February 10, 2011

Now that the real estate market is starting to show signs of life after struggling since 2007, realtors should consider re-vamping their web sites to ensure information & articles are current, helpful, and professional-looking. It's too easy to have a site built only to let it languish with dated information. Web visitors use the Internet as their 1st source of reference when doing research for homes so it's important to have a useful site.

Web site real estate search functionality should be easy to use, allowing mixing of different sets of criteria (price, location, bedrooms, baths, lot size, price change, etc.). Coupled with detailed listing information and clear/bright interior/exterior images get buyers interested. Limited or complicated search applications will only frustrate prospective buyers - don't let it happen.

Real estate professionals may even be able to benefit from social channels like Twitter and Facebook. What better way to alert your followers of new listings! And these updates can easily be sent to customer smartphones (which recently exceeded PC sales worldwide). These applications are easily linked to from any web site, and allow customers to leave helpful feedback.

:: Labels: real estate, realtor, twitter, facebook, listings

Chat Software Customization

January 25, 2011

The best thing about our live chat software is it's easily customized to meet customer needs. We're often asked for feature enhancements and we're happy to implement changes that improve our chat service.

Even requests for customized chat images are done by us for free. Need a new image for your chat icon? Just ask and we'll work to develop one that fits your site. Don't get stuck using template images -- design your own or have us design one for you. All absolutely free!

We want your feedback -- even for the smallest of features. Size of HTML input and text-area fields, reporting features, etc. We want this to be the best live chat service but can only do so with your help. Thank you again...

:: Labels: feedback, best chat, template, images, custom

2010 Was Busy - Looking Forward To 2011

January 13, 2011

November and December are typically the largest sales months for e-commerce retailers. The holiday season brings out shoppers in droves, and the Internet only facilitates the ease of purchasing goods and services. Various media outlets reported strong online sales during fall/winter 2010 and 2011 is shaping up to be another strong year.

2010 was a busy year for us. We spent the year building relationships with customers interested in increasing online sales and customer service. Although we market live chat software services for e-commerce businesses, we provide much more than just software. Sharing live chat best practices (sending invites, accepting chats, responding to questions) helps our customers succeed and is one of many free services we're happy to provide.

For 2011 we'll continue developing relationships with new and existing customers, as well as develop/implement the feedback we've received to improve our live chat services. If you're not already a customer and want to learn more about live support and how it can improve your web site business, contact us any time.

:: Labels: e-commerce, relationships, building, feedback, chat

Top 3 Holiday Season Tips For E-Commerce Sites

November 2, 2010

Now that the leaves have fallen off the trees (at least up here in New York), it's time for E-commerce sites to prepare the gradual increase of online shoppers. Although many early visitors to web sites are likely "just browsing" to get ideas for gifts, merchants should do everything they can to ensure the customer comes back to complete the purchase.

E-commerce shopping site owners often ask what can be done to prepare for the busier times of year. Today we'll share a few tips to help make the holiday season a joyous (and profitable) one :-)

Easy navigation

Customers want to find their product quickly and easily. Internal site search capabilities should be implemented and clearly accessible on the home page. The keywords used within the search should be monitored (either by reading the web server logs, or by back-end web site scripting) so an understanding of popular keywords can be capitalized upon.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC)

Start advertising on PPC networks, or if you already do, consider increasing your bids. Google Adwords and Microsoft Adcenter will be where you want to focus, as they will have the majority of web traffic (especially since Yahoo now uses Microsoft's ad network to display ads). If you're listing specific products, ensure the "landing page" for the ad links directly to your product page (and not your home page). This will increase the change of making a sale.

It's about the customer (no, really!)

It can't be stressed enough how important customer service is, especially for any fledgling site. Although large companies often provide terrible service (yet somehow still stay in business) small business owners can't afford to make the same mistakes. Simple *and clearly visible* information like phone number (toll-free or not), sales/support email links, and live chat software build trust and inspire confidence for prospective buyers. With email, ensure they are responded to within hours (consider using live chat as it can prevent losing the customer (and resulting sale)).

With these top 3 e-commerce tips in hand, take a hard look at your layout, products, and customer service processes to ensure you're ready for business!

:: Labels: holiday, sales, ppc, trust, adwords, adcenter

Automotive Industry Finds New Ways To Increase Customer Loyalty

November 1, 2010

Media outlets are reporting used car prices have been steadily climbing over the last year or so. Most experts blame the economy on the trend -- customers are more interested in buying "used" than "new". While this is great for individual car owners, the same can't be said for auto dealers with new car inventories.

For anyone who has experienced the new car buying process, it can be frustrating (we've certainly had our share of experiences buying cars through dealers). Fortunately car dealers have been looking for ways to increase customer service and loyalty through the dealership, and over the Internet. Some improvements:

* reduced "haggling" over pricing
* addressing customer issues quickly
* follow-up surveys

Auto dealers are improving their "online" customer service as well. The photos of inside and outside the cars are easy to view and really help with the car searching experience. Detailed options, mileage, CARFAX, and VIN information also help in the buying process. Additional auto dealer web site customer-friendly options:

* easily-accessible contact information (email and phone)
* live chat software allowing site visitors to ask questions anonymously
* online forms to request service appointments

Prospective buyers use the Internet as the first place to look when researching new and used cars. This underscores how important it is to have a professional-looking web site, easy-to-find contact information, and detailed information regarding inventory.

:: Labels: car, auto, dealers, customer, service

Why are some website visitors on my webpages for hours (as viewed through the operator console)?

October 29, 2010

Over time we've started to notice a few things when using live support software. Within the operator console (accessed via the 'Member's Page'), one occurrence we're seeing more often is web visitors who've been viewing a web page for hours! Unless your web page is REALLY long, it doesn't make sense for a visitor to be viewing a page for hours (unless they've fallen asleep :-). As we've tracked this intermittent occurrence, we're starting to believe what is occurring is the page is being viewed in a "tabbed browser".

Tabbed windows were introduced back in the last 1980s and increased in popularity (for web browsers) in the decades that followed. Before tabbed browsers were available, we were always left with having to open new browser windows if we didn't want to lose what previous page we viewed. For anyone who's used tabbed browsing, they know how easy is it to open dozens of tabs. It's also just as easy is to forget to close them. We suspect that's why some web page visitors are showing as currently viewing a web page for hours -- they've left the page open in a tab.

:: Labels: tabbed, browsing, website, visitor, tracking

Use Canned Responses During Live Chat

October 29, 2010

Definition of 'Canned': "Used repeatedly with little or no change."

Due to popular demand we've implemented the ability to allow operators to create 'canned responses'. Canned responses are a great way to speed up responses during a live chat session. Once you've signed up to get the live chat software you'll log into the operator (agent) console, select "settings", then "canned responses". On that screen you can enter common responses you might use during a live chat. Addition and deletion of canned responses are easily managed.

Your canned responses will then appear in an easily-accessible drop-down list that, when selected, will automatically copy the text into the input field (where you'll then submit to the visitor sees your chat message). If you monitor/manage multiple websites you can set it up so that canned responses are only available to operators on a site-by-site basis.

:: Labels: canned, chat, pre-typed, entered, keyed

Knowing When To Invite A Visitor To Live Chat

October 29, 2010

Using live help software can help owners of e-commerce sites increase sales and strengthen customer loyalty with website visitors. A feature such as "proactive chat invite" can be used to facilitate the assistance of website visitors (a chat invite is where the website visitor receives a popup message asking if they need live help/customer assistance)..

But knowing when to invite your website visitors to chat can be difficult for those e-commerce owners new to using live support software. Their first instinct may be to try and invite every visitor that enters the website; especially the instant they arrive. But for those of us who have encountered 'chat now' requests from other e-commerce websites, we've come to understand that constantly being asked to chat with a representative can be annoying.

Over time, and through various customer reviews/tests, it seems proactive invites to chat should be sent on a per-visitor-basis. As you watch the website visitor traverse your website, you'll get a feel of what they're interested in and/or looking for (the reason they're on your site). With that information in mind, a decision can be made when/if to send a proactive chat.

Sending proactive chat invites with live support software is useful in connecting with your customers. Using your best judgment, and a lot of testing, will help you best determine what works best for your e-commerce site.

:: Labels: invite, chat, ask, sales

How to do a 301 Redirect

October 29, 2010

While cleaning up the chat software service website we realized the need to use 301 redirects for the pages moved recently. Normally we would make the changes to page names/folders and move them around as necessary, but through the use of Google Webmaster Tools we've noticed the removal of pages is causing Google's spider to report several pages as 'not found'.

We assumed their spider would notice the changes and make the appropriate updates in their database but Webmaster Tools continued to report the pages as 404 (not found). At that point it made sense to implement 301 redirects (as suggested by Google) to let all search engines know about the changes. We've included some examples below for anyone else that needs them:

301 Redirect for (Classic) ASP

<%@ Language=VBScript %>
Response.Status="301 Moved Permanently"
Response.AddHeader "Location",""
' Below is used if just local page name change
' Response.AddHeader "Location","/somenewpage.asp"

301 Redirect for PHP

Header( "HTTP/1.1 301 Moved Permanently" );
Header( "Location:" );

301 Redirect for ASP.NET

<script runat="server">
private void Page_Load(object sender, System.EventArgs e)
Response.Status = "301 Moved Permanently";

301 Redirect for JSP

response.setHeader( "Location", "" );
response.setHeader( "Connection", "close" );

301 Redirects are also beneficial in that they can reduce the chance of being penalized by Google for "duplicate content". HTTP code 301 tells the bots/spiders the page has moved permanently. In contrast HTTP code 302 indicates the page has moved temporarily.

Now that we've implemented 301 redirects we'll be interested in seeing if this resolves the spidered-pages problem. If not we'll have to go through page removal next...

:: Labels: 301, 302, redirect, http, codes, server, response

Website fraudsters - what can be done to stop them?

October 29, 2010

We manage several different e-commerce websites and it never ceases to amaze us the number of "shoppers" entering a website for one purpose -- to perpetrate a fraud. It's usually 1 of 2 types:

  1. Visitor wanting to fraudulently purchase goods/services, usually through the use of stolen payment information.
  2. Visitor is on the site to test credit/debit card numbers for validity; with no intention of purchasing or finishing purchasing process on website. They may go on to purchase goods at another site or sell the card information to other criminals.

Fraud #1 is usually easier to spot -- high-priced checkout items, going to a shipping address that (surprise!) doesn't jive with the billing address. It goes without saying the IP, billing, and shipping address should always be checked carefully for each and every order.

Fraud #2 seems to be on the rise. We can only assume the card numbers "validity" are worth more just using it to purchase goods (which aren't likely to arrive anyways). When we were first witnessing this type of website fraud, we thought it was automated bots submitting the payment information. But after testing CAPTCHA scripts on the payment pages, and watching the site with real-time monitoring, we noticed the submissions were being hand-typed in by visitors.

For either type of fraud monitoring the IP addresses is essential. What you'll notice: fraudster addresses are coming from popular "proxy servers" hosted at commercial dedicated server providers. When this occurs you're best bet is to block the IP of the proxy, but you may find that you'll need to block the entire "dedicated server provider's" IP block instead (why would your visitors be coming from dedicated servers anyways? :-)

:: Labels: fraud, credit, card, bots, address, proxy

Get your free trial use of live chat software today.

Who Uses Our Live Chat Service

E-commerce Web Sites

Automotive Dealerships

Technical Support Web Sites

Web Hosting Companies

Web Design Companies

Search Engine Optimization Companies

Call Center Businesses

Live chat is an excellent way to convert browsing web site visitors into buyers. See what it can do for your business today!

We are committed to providing top-quality hosted (and white label) live chat services to our customers. If you're not happy with our live chat service get in touch with us and we'll provide an added month of free use or give you your money back. It's your choice.