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Drive leads and enhance customer support with 24/7 live chat for your website. Engage visitors in real-time and convert more with Berkshire Receptionists.

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Live Chat For Your Website

24/7. 5000+ Integrations. Screening. Lead intake. Berkshire's live chat for your website will increase leads and improve customer support

The Value of a Virtual Receptionist

Live chat revolutionizes the way websites engage with visitors, providing real-time support, addressing questions, and ensuring unparalleled customer satisfaction. It allows businesses to boost their online presence and elevate the website’s customer experience.

The appeal of live chat on websites is the aspect of offering 24/7 customer support. Whether it’s the weekend, a holiday, or after hours, your customers will have access to exceptional customer service agents who can assist them. Not only will your customers have 24-hour live chat service, but they’ll also experience the benefits that live chat offers over traditional customer support channels.

With the market constantly evolving, there are many live chat providers offering live chat solutions with varying features, pricing, and levels of customization. It can be quite difficult to find the best live chat for your website, so Berkshire Receptionists is here to help! This article will explore live chat and provide you with answers to these common questions:

  • What is live chat on a website?
  • What can live chat do?
  • How do you use live chat?
  • Are live chats on websites real people?
  • What are the pros and cons of live chat?
  • Why should I add live chat to my website?
  • Which live chat is best for websites?

What Is Live Chat on a Website?

Live chat is a powerful tool that many emerging businesses are utilizing to cater to their customer’s needs around the clock on their website. By clicking on a website’s chat box, a customer is able to conveniently communicate with a knowledgeable support agent in real-time. Through this fast-paced method of communication, live chat support agents are able to provide assistance to customers by answering questions and resolving issues.

According to VentureBeat, 51% of customers want businesses to be available 24/7. Considering that customers are in different time zones and geographical locations, businesses should expect customers to contact them after hours.

What Can Live Chat Do? 

Live chat acts as a direct channel for website owners to interact with their audience, answer questions, and provide a convenient line of support for customers. 

What Live Chat Can Do For Business Websites

Online businesses may use live chat as an opportunity to enhance the customer experience on their website while saving time and money. The two-way communication channel gives customers direct access to your brand, making it easier for your business to build relationships with new and existing customers.

Many online businesses have integrated live chat into their website because it gives them access to features that generic customer communication methods wouldn’t provide. Some basic features of live chat include: 

  • A customizable chat widget that appears on the website as a pop-up and allows visitors to initiate a conversation.
  • Instant messaging that enables visitors and support agents to communicate and exchange messages in real-time.
  • A canned response functionality that allows agents to respond promptly with predefined responses to frequently asked questions.
  • Typing indicators that show when a visitor or agent is typing, providing real-time feedback for both the visitor and the agent.
  • Chat routing and distribution tools that route incoming chats to the appropriate agents/departments based on predefined rules, availability, and expertise.
  • Visitor tracking tools that display visitor information, such as location, current page, referral source, and previous interactions.
  • Access to chat history and transcripts for future reference, analysis, or follow-up.

What Live Chat Can Do for Customers

Live chat offers a convenient way for customers to get online support and guidance from a real person. According to Forrester, 53% of customers are likely to abandon their online purchases if they can’t find quick answers to their questions. This is why it’s vital to offer fast responses to customers who are browsing your website.

The most beneficial aspect for customers is convenience. As they are browsing your website, they can simply click a button and receive an immediate response. It takes lower effort and creates a more streamlined process for your customers, as opposed to navigating through phone menus or waiting for email responses. 

In addition to these benefits, your customers will value the personalized approach of the support agent, while also having the freedom to multitask while chatting with the agent. Overall, it aligns with their expectations for quick and accessible customer service, enhancing their satisfaction and loyalty towards a business.

What Is The Difference Between Live Chat and Web Chat?

Live chat and web chat are terms often used interchangeably, but there can be some subtle differences in their usage. Live chat is a specific subset of web chat that specifically refers to real-time, instant messaging interactions between website visitors and live agents. In contrast, web chat can encompass a broader range of chat features and options on a website.

  • Live Chat – Live chat typically refers to a real-time communication tool that allows website visitors or customers to engage in instant messaging with a live support agent or customer service representative. Live chat is commonly used for providing customer support, answering inquiries, and assisting customers in real time. It often involves a chat widget embedded in a website or app, enabling visitors to initiate a chat session and receive immediate responses.
  • Web Chat – Web chat is a broader term that encompasses various forms of online communication or chat features on a website or app. It can include both real-time live chat functionality as well as asynchronous messaging options. Web chat can include live chat, chatbots, contact forms, or other messaging tools on a website. While live chat is a specific type of web chat that focuses on immediate interactions with a live agent, web chat can refer to any form of chat functionality on a website, whether real-time or not.

How Do You Use Live Chat?

To use live chat, businesses integrate the live chat software into their website, allowing visitors to initiate chat sessions. When a chat request is received, it is directed to an available support agent who engages in a conversation with the visitor. 

The chat window provides features like typing indicators and file sharing to enhance the chat experience. Using their expertise, agents guide customers by addressing their queries and resolving issues. Once the chat is concluded and the customer’s concerns are resolved, the chat can be closed, and relevant information can be documented for future reference.

Are Live Chats on Websites from Real People?

Live chat on websites can involve both real people and automated chatbots, depending on how a business chooses to implement it. Ultimately, the choice of using real people, chatbots, or a combination of both in live chat depends on the business’s resources, objectives, and customer support requirements.

Automated Chatbots

Some businesses choose to implement chatbots as part of their live chat functionality. Chatbots are computer programs designed to simulate human-like conversations. They can handle basic inquiries, provide predefined responses, and assist with common customer queries. Chatbots are especially useful for handling repetitive or routine tasks, freeing up human agents’ time to focus on more complex or specialized customer needs. 

However, it’s important to note that chatbots may not always be able to provide the same level of nuanced or customized support as real people. In fact, Statista states that 47.5% of US internet users feel the greatest challenge with chatbots is they provide too many unhelpful responses. Because of this, it is important to not rely too heavily on automation when choosing the best live chat software for your website.

Live Chat Support Agents

In many cases, live chat on websites involves real people, typically support agents or customer service representatives. These individuals are available to engage in real-time conversations with website visitors, answer their questions, provide assistance, and address any concerns or issues they may have. Real people offer a personalized and human touch to the live chat experience, allowing for a more interactive and empathetic conversation.

The primary role of a live chat support agent is to offer timely and personalized assistance to customers using the live chat software or platform. They interact with customers through text-based chats, either on a company’s website or a dedicated chat interface, to ensure a seamless and positive customer experience. Here are some key skills of a live chat support agent:

  • Providing 24/7 live chat support
  • Assisting customers with product and service knowledge
  • Troubleshooting issues with a customer-centric approach
  • Displaying empathy and professionalism
  • Multitasking and time management
  • Resolving technical issues
  • Documenting interactions and following up

Although these responsibilities are common amongst support agents, it’s important to note that different providers may offer other advanced tools to meet specific business needs. A high-quality live chat software provides features and solutions for businesses to create a seamless experience for their customers. These more established providers employ experienced live chat agents who can message customers offline, trigger chat invitations based on visitor criteria or behavior, integrate with other systems (such as CRMs), and provide insights related to key performance indicators to improve chat effectiveness.

Overall, human support agents play a crucial role in delivering high-quality customer service and ensuring positive customer experiences through real-time text-based communication. At Berkshire Receptionists, we understand the importance of using human agents, so our agents are able to handle more complex issues with personalized responses while adding an empathetic touch.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Live Chat?

Cons

Limited Availability

Live chat may not be available 24/7, depending on the business’s operating hours or staffing limitations. If customers reach out during non-business hours or when live chat agents are offline, they may not receive immediate support, leading to potential frustration.

Fortunately, Berkshire Receptionists offers 24/7 live chat support, whether it’s after-hours, on the weekend, or on a holiday. Our support agents are dedicated to providing prompt and professional customer service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Potential Delays

Although live chat aims to provide instant responses, there can still be delays in receiving replies. Agents may be handling multiple chats simultaneously, leading to slower response times. Technical issues or high chat volumes can also cause delays in providing timely assistance.

Thankfully, Berkshire Receptionists has been in business for decades, serving over 500+ clients, and continues to deliver exceptional customer service. We understand the importance of delivering accurate and timely information to customers, which is why we invest in continuous training and development programs for our support agents.

Need for Skilled Agents

Live chat requires competent and knowledgeable agents to provide effective support. Insufficient training or lack of expertise can result in inaccurate or inadequate responses, potentially leading to customer dissatisfaction or misunderstandings.

While it is true that live chat requires competent and knowledgeable agents to deliver effective support, Berkshire Receptionists addresses this concern by providing highly skilled agents who are specifically trained in various industries. Our team undergoes comprehensive training to ensure they possess the expertise and knowledge necessary to handle inquiries with accuracy and professionalism.

Language Barriers

Live chat can pose challenges when dealing with customers from diverse backgrounds. Language barriers or cultural differences may affect the quality of communication and understanding, potentially leading to misinterpretations or customer frustration.

Berkshire Receptionists overcomes language barriers by providing a team of bilingual and diverse agents. Our agents are proficient in multiple languages, ensuring effective communication and understanding with customers from diverse backgrounds.

Technical Issues

Live chat relies on stable internet connections and functional software. Technical glitches, server downtime, or software malfunctions can disrupt the live chat experience, causing inconvenience for both customers and agents.

At Berkshire Receptionist, we prioritize reliability. With a 99.99% uptime guarantee, we minimize technical issues, ensuring a seamless live chat experience for both customers and agents. Trust us for uninterrupted communication and exceptional customer service.

Overdependence on Automation

While chatbots can handle routine inquiries, they may lack the ability to handle complex or nuanced customer issues. Over-reliance on automation without a seamless transition to human agents, when needed, can result in frustrated customers who feel their concerns are not adequately addressed.

Businesses need to be aware of these potential cons and implement strategies to mitigate them. Providing clear communication about live chat availability, training agents effectively, and continuously monitoring and improving the live chat experience can help address these challenges and maximize the benefits of live chat. 

Luckily, Berkshire Receptionists combats all of these drawbacks by providing 24/7 support agents that are bilingual and trained in different industries. Our support agents provide exceptional customer service to website visitors in less than a minute, providing support and solutions for the customer.

Live chat offers several benefits for businesses and website visitors. These benefits make live chat a valuable tool for businesses to improve customer support, increase sales, and enhance the overall customer experience. Here are some key advantages:

Pros

Real-Time Support for Customers

Live chat allows customers to type their questions, concerns, or issues directly into the chat window. The messages are sent instantly to the live chat agent, who can read and respond to them in real-time. Unlike traditional support channels like email or phone, there is no waiting period or queue.

In addition, live chat agents can handle multiple chat sessions simultaneously. They can manage ongoing conversations with different customers simultaneously, maximizing their efficiency and ensuring prompt responses to customers’ inquiries.

Cost-Effective

In general, live chat provides a more efficient and streamlined support process, reducing costs compared to traditional support channels. By providing live chat as an alternative support channel, businesses can deflect customer inquiries from phone calls and emails.

Many live chat providers offer cloud-based solutions, eliminating the need for on-premises hardware or software. This reduces upfront costs and ongoing maintenance expenses. Your business will be able to handle a higher volume of chats while using fewer support agents, which reduces labor costs. There are even cheap live chat options that cater to businesses with lower chat volume.

Tailored Engagement for Customers

Live chat allows for a more personalized and satisfying experience for the customer. According to Insider Intelligence, 52% of consumers say they view companies more favorably when the customer service is more personalized to them and their interests. By leveraging the capabilities of live chat, businesses can deliver tailored engagement to customers, making them feel valued and understood.

Customers will also enjoy speaking with a live person–rather than a robot–who can address them by name and cater to their unique needs. This personalized approach enhances the customer experience, fosters loyalty, and increases the likelihood of repeat business.

Sales and Lead Generation

By asking questions and understanding customer preferences, agents can suggest relevant products or services that meet the customer’s requirements. Additionally, agents can identify upselling opportunities and recommend complementary products or services that enhance the customer’s experience and increase sales revenue.

By establishing a human connection and demonstrating expertise and empathy, agents can instill confidence in customers, fostering trust and increasing the likelihood of sales. Live chat agents can use their product knowledge and understanding of customer needs to make personalized product recommendations. Through the use of live chat on websites, businesses can boost customer satisfaction by building relationships with website visitors.

Competitive Advantage

Only 9% of companies use live chat on their websites effectively (Super Office). Implementing live chat can set a business apart from competitors that may not offer the same level of real-time support. Having a 24-hour live chat feature prominently displayed on a website can signal a commitment to customer service and accessibility. This can attract customers who value instant support and give the business an edge over competitors who may rely on slower support methods. 

While live chat can bring numerous benefits, it’s important to be aware of potential drawbacks or limitations:

Why Should I Add Live Chat to My Website?

In short, you should consider adding live chat to your website because it provides tangible benefits for businesses and customers. A study found that businesses using live chat experience a 48% increase in revenue per chat hour and a 40% increase in conversion rates. This statistic highlights the significant benefits that businesses can reap from implementing live chat as a customer service channel.

Live chat is a cost-effective tool that businesses can use to improve their customer service, increase sales, and make data-driven decisions. Due to its effectiveness, live chat is very beneficial for businesses trying to meet their customers’ growing needs and gain a deeper understanding of their target audience. Small businesses can especially benefit from live chat to gain a better competitive advantage by providing a 24-hour live chat service.

Implementing live chat for your business can enhance customer service, provide a competitive advantage, increase sales and conversions, and offer cost-effective support. It’s an effective way to engage with customers, build relationships, and deliver a positive customer experience, all of which are crucial for the success and growth of your business.

Can I Add Live Chat to My Website?

In general, live chat can be added to any website, regardless of the platform or content management system (CMS) used. Live chat providers typically offer different integration options to accommodate various website setups. Here are some common ways to add live chat to a website:

  • Embedding a Code Snippet: Live chat providers typically provide a code snippet that needs to be added to the website’s HTML or CMS template. This code snippet enables the live chat functionality on the website. Website owners or administrators can usually access the code snippet from the live chat provider’s dashboard or settings.
  • Plugin or Extension Integration: If you’re using a CMS or website builder platform, there might be specific plugins or extensions available that allow for easy integration of live chat. These plugins or extensions can simplify the process by providing a user-friendly interface to configure and activate live chat on your website.
  • Custom Development: For more advanced websites or custom-built platforms, you may need to work with a developer to integrate live chat. The live chat provider may offer API documentation and resources for developers to implement the necessary functionality.

Before adding live chat to your website, consider the following steps:

  1. Research and select a live chat provider that aligns with your business needs and requirements. Consider factors such as pricing, features, customization options, scalability, and customer support.
  2. Create an account with the chosen live chat provider and configure the settings based on your preferences. This includes customizing chat greetings, agent availability, chat routing rules, and other relevant settings.
  3. Once you have set up the live chat account, you will typically receive a code snippet or a plugin that needs to be implemented on your website.
  4. Depending on your website setup, follow the specific instructions provided by the live chat provider to integrate the code snippet or plugin. This may involve adding the code to your website’s HTML, installing and activating a plugin, or working with a developer to implement the necessary changes.
  5. After integrating live chat, thoroughly test its functionality to ensure it is working as intended. Monitor its performance and make any necessary adjustments to optimize its effectiveness in supporting your website visitors.
 

Remember to regularly review your live chat implementation, gather feedback from customers, and make improvements as needed to provide the best possible live chat experience on your website.

Which Live Chat Is Best for Websites?

The best live chat for a website is one that works for your business and provides the features you need to stay successful. But with so many options to choose from, it can be hard to tell what service is right for you. Here are a few key questions to ask before you select a live chat software.

  • Is this service established and experienced? Berkshire Receptionists has a proven reputation in the customer service industry, serving hundreds of businesses for 80+ years.
  • Does this service hire quality people? Our support agents are industry-specialized, experienced, and tech-savvy. They possess a wide range of web skills and a high level of proficiency with commonly used applications. Our agents continue to receive ongoing training to further their knowledge base on customer service skills, modern technologies, and specific businesses and industries. Additionally, our team is consistently engaging in real-life call scenario simulations to enhance their problem-solving abilities backed up by cutting-edge technology.
  • Does this service offer 24/7 coverage? Our live chat support agents are available 24 hours a day, for all 7 days of the week. We also offer disaster recovery, meaning our agents are available even in the event of a disaster.
  • Does this service offer useful features? Berkshire Receptionists offers the most important features for a live chat service: real-time messaging, omnichannel communication, integration, customization, and analytics.
  • Are bilingual agents provided? Whether your website visitors speak English or Spanish, our bilingual support agents will be able to assist your customers with anything they need.
 

Live chat can revolutionize your customer service strategy, increase sales, and deliver exceptional experiences. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to take your business to the next level. Discover the power of live chat for your business and get started today!