Since communication online is fast becoming one of the most popular points of B2C and B2B contact, it’s essential for companies to provide their clients with solid and reliable mean of engaging in and maintaining such interactions. In terms of online customer service and corporate-level communication, LiveChat – with all its powerful live support and help desk functionalities – seems like the perfect solution. But is it? Find out in our review!
A Little Bit of History
Developed in Wrocław, Poland, LiveChat was first launched in 2002. Since 2009, it is offered in a software as a service (SaaS) model of distribution, meaning that it’s licensed on a subscription basis, while all the data is stored in the cloud online. It was also in 2009 when LiveChat began to gain popularity in the rest of Europe. With over 16,000 users in more than 140 countries as of now, LiveChat is one of the most popular e-commerce live support and help desk tools worldwide, making its parent studio one of the most successful Polish startups to have ever launched.
The General User-Friendliness
Among its multiple pros, the single most important one is LiveChat’s simple and intuitive interface. The amount of work that went into balancing its UX/UI seems awesome indeed. The software’s overall user-friendliness is one of the top, one of a kind. You can begin using it right after it’s installed: it requires no additional know-how, no training, no explanation. And, since training Your staff to use certain software does often consume a lot of resources, this comes as a serious advantage, there’s a lot to gain from it. Don’t get me wrong: LiveChat is a complicated eCommerce tool. Still, it’s one that reveals it’s more complicated side in a series of gradual steps, rather than throwing You on the deep from the start – an optimal mix of high initial customizability and overall user-friendliness.
All the additional functions, like the automated greetings, canned responses, monitoring website traffic, or pre-made messages, are available from the get-go, making LiveChat ideal for those who want to focus on the customer service aspect of their duties. Experienced users will find out that there’s also a more nuanced side to LiveChat’s interface. In fact, the deeper You dive into it, the more sophisticated it gets. As an Administrator, for example, You’ll be able to monitor all the ongoing conversations. You’ll be able to use functions like “Supervision” to help Your colleagues. The Agents will be able to see Your feedback directly in their chat window, while the customer will still remain unaware. You’ll also be able to limit Your Agents’ access to various information on their clients (which can be a useful management option at times, especially when there’s no time to micro-manage.)
The last thing that’s worth the mention in terms of the general software’s user-friendliness is that LiveChat is also available on iOS and Android, making it possible to use it on Your phone after hours (which, as we all know, can come in handy when the day was long and busy.)
The Company-Side Usefulness vs. the Customer-Side Usefulness
The companies will sure find LiveChat useful, but will their customers? The answer is positive! Customers can initiate the conversation at will. The connection itself is immediate and reliable. The same moment the conversation is initiated the Agent is informed that there’s an incoming question and can proceed to find the answer.
The customer-side interface is also customizable. Administrators can change it at will to make sure it’s suitable, as well as to make it – both in terms of UX and UI – look like an integral part of the page. Although it’s quite a common thing these times, this feature comes as a welcome addition nonetheless, allowing You to blend LiveChat seamlessly into the rest of Your site.
Pros and Cons of SaaS Model Distribution
There are pros and cons to using a software as a service model of distribution. The pros are a much-needed simplification of the installation process and lesser dependence on local infrastructure. The cons, per analogiam, include higher dependence on the provider’s infrastructure. Furthermore, LiveChat’s subscription isn’t the cheapest one there. Still, the software’s usefulness – not to mention its plethora of features – makes up for it. (Besides, there are multiple subscription options there, some of them coming with interesting bonuses – it’s worth at least checking them out on LiveChat’s page.)
Also. Take note that LiveChat’s updates are frequent and regular. These updates are not simple bug patches, though. The real point to them is – most of the times – introducing new features, like the automated greetings mentioned above. And since it’s these features that set LiveChat apart from the competition, this subscription model – and, in part, its price – seems a little bit more appropriate.
On the plus side there’s also the customer service. When it comes to LiveChat, it’s a to-notch one. Which, in fact, seems appropriate, too, considered that LiveChat is all about customer service.
All in All
So. To sum it all up.
LiveChat is not cheap, but it’s worth the investment. Its functionalities are numerous and varied, its updates frequent and in no sense invasive, coming with new features and making the old ones work better. I’d absolutely recommend LiveChat to those wishing to improve their customers’ experience: the improvement is noticeable, it’s plain to see. The Agents will also find it attractive: using it will allow them to focus on the customer service part of their job, which, in turn, will result in more satisfied clients. All in all, an investment to consider – and a great product, one of the best (if not the best) of its kind.