Best live chat options for startups

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Best live chat options for startups
July 24, 2020

The best live chat software for startups can fundamentally assist a business with conversions. Especially in times as digital as today, virtual options for customer service, such as chatbot assistance and live chat support, are crucial for a business to stay competitive. 

In this article, we’ll define what a chatbot is and how to build one, as well as list the 10 best live chat software for startups to give you a great sense of the best options in live chat currently out there. 

What is a chatbot?

The term chatbot comes from the unison of chat and a reduced version of the word robot. As you probably know, bots are automated programs designed for a network, most commonly the internet. Coined to describe a robot that can handle digital chat interaction through artificial intelligence (or AI), chatbots are frequently used to deal with the first contact with external parties. Their goal is to speed up virtual assistance while solving or filtering customer needs for a company. You’ve probably come in contact with chatbots in the past. In those cases, you resort to a business’ live chatbox. And an automated responder most probably gives you a welcoming message.

Chatbots typically greet customers, categorize the areas in which consumers need assistance and provide selected material as replies. Through the use of keywords and commonly asked queries, chatbots currently handle close to 40% of all chat conversations. They successfully complete a conversation, start to finish, in close to 70% of those cases, too. 

The benefits of a chatbot are: 

  • unparalleled abilities to handle an unlimited number of contacts at once
  • 24/7 availability
  • functional despite geographical location
  • amount of data storage
  • efficient routing for human interaction
  • their potential for ROI with minimal effort for a business

However, we’re trying to get to a list of the 10 best live chat software for startups. We’ll speed up our pause on chatbots to quickly summarize how to build one before giving you a list of highly-recommended live chat options. 

How do you build a chatbot?

To build a chatbot from scratch, we recommend you resort to a chatbot builder. Some sites offer chatbot templates for beginners to help you out even more. In a few steps, you’ll need to:

1: Choose a chatbot building website

2: Add a chat plugin to your business website

3: Look for the “+Add another bot” feature on your chatbot builder

4: Define where your chatbot will be triggered on your website

5: Create and relate action nodes to customize chatbot questions and answers

3: Test your chatbot 

Along with testing should come a steadier step in creating a chatbot, which is to monitor its performance. Stay close to your chatbot’s results to measure how many sales it closes, how well it finalizes contacts, and what you can do to improve. Do so consistently and continuously. 

Now, for the juice of our article, let’s get to the best live chat software for startups:

1. LiveChat

Here’s an evident name with flexible pricing and appealing chatbox design. With over 130 integrations and experts who can set up your chatbox, you can even include file-sharing to it. The tool is actually quite easy to use. And transcripts, timelines, and customization with logo and social media buttons are part of its features. 

Being one of the most popular options out there, this company can work on a budget-friendly aspect, which makes it an excellent catch for starting companies. 

2. Olark

Here’s a YCombinator baby for you. Improvement is undoubtedly part of the big area Olark facilitates. They do so with real-time dashboards on chat metrics and customer feedback, different period email reports, and Google Analytics integration. The software delivers a rich perspective of a startup’s conversion funnels. It doesn’t just focus on excellent reporting for leverage and optimization. The tool is also highly customizable to fit customer needs in terms of live chat options to the fullest. 

3. Drift

What’s worthy about Drift is how it filters the most valuable customers for a more hands-on conversion by people in your Sales Team. The updates might be a bit too many and too frequent for most users. Yet, the return on your investment by cutting through general queries to those more likely to convert makes it a great asset. 

As heads-up and a bit of a con, there’s a big jump from a free personal account to their paid version. Especially if your chat volumes aren’t quite that high yet, this option might not be the go-to-point this far. 

4. Intercom

If you’re looking for a tool where customer communication can happen all-in-one, Intercom is a safe bet. This platform integrates marketing and messaging to ease lead conversion as much as customer support, engagement, and onboarding. 

Its strength is also its weakness, however. Intercom might not be the most ideal resource for a business that already s most processes stored in one platform. Not if they’re just looking to add chat functionalities to their pack. 

5. Zendesk Chat

Similar to Intercom, a tool used for many other business functions here integrates chat with its offer. If you’re already on Zendesk for different goals, then taking a look at this chat options might be well worth it. 

The plus to it is how it builds custom reports. The platform’s got dashboards that feed off chat metrics for better visibility of your performance across all your support channels. It measures customer satisfaction levels, problem resolutions, and statistics per agent or full teams. Some features, however, are only offered in costlier paid versions. Those include real-time metrics, advanced encryption & security, and multilingual content.

Image contains a person using a laptop

6. Tidio

With mailing features for micro & small businesses in its free plan and 3 allowed users, Tidio’s strong point is the number of integrations it enables. We mean that for eCommerce, especially. Abandoned cart focus is a big one in this last sense, as well. 

There’s an offline message availability along with mobile device compatibility. And the kind of customer care it offers comes with a promise of over 140 supported languages.

7. Bold360

This AI-powered software comes with functional visual quality. On a single screen, you can view customer details, deal with live chats, can messages as needed, and check the number of conversations you’re running in full. The software is quite user-friendly, allowing the most inexperienced to handle it without much problem. 

A firm reliance with little tech trouble makes this a viable option in terms of pricing, as well. And think of it as an inter-departmental or internal team communication tool, too, especially if you need to cut back on the distance between off-shore or long-distance locations. 

8. ChatBot

Since we include a bit of information on chatbots in this article, we also add a live chatbot platform for businesses. This tool’s strong area is how easy it is to set up a chatbot. You can build a custom AI chatbot in minutes without a need for any technical skills. With a drag and drop functionality, creating an interface is smoothed considerably for new learners. They also give users access to helpful templates. And, beyond websites, it also works on Facebook pages and messaging applications.

9. PureChat

This one comes with real-time visitor analytics and contact history. On an easy setup and an intuitive platform, the promise is to install a code on your website to start chatting in minutes. An editor gives you the option to edit your chat widget for desktop and mobile devices. PureChat has a free 30-day trial, and, as usual, whatever plan you choose will require an account sign-up. We highlight appointment scheduling as part of its features. 

10. ClickDesk

We don’t want to wrap up without including a video and voice chat option such as ClickDesk. Think about your product demo options here! Moreover, the voice chat and video chats are based on browser use, for which there’s no need for any sort of an install. You can also take your conversations and manage tickets on the go through your mobile. Think you’ll have more than 2 people on a call? 3-way calling is available as much as call forwarding for any internal assistance needs.  

We consider ClickDesk quite worthy of finalizing our 10 best live chat software for startups list now. Let us know if we can help in any way, as usual. We always look forward to hearing from you.

Best live chat options for startups
Angelica A.
Freelance and Remote Web Content Writer is the current hat under which Ang keeps on the global move. Writing blogs, website content and (especially) Facebook ads for diverse small businesses, entrepreneurs and international parties is part of the common work under Ang's belt. Otherwise, you'll see Ang riding a motorcycle on their vegan way out of theater rehearsal.
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