Do you remember your company website some five years ago? If you had one, I’m sure you had “Contact us” page on it, where you had your email address and your phone number only. Something like info- or contact- @companyname.com , right? Users had to click on the email address link to open new message in the mail client, or even worse – copy-paste the address to contact you. “Contact us“ page later received contact form, that allowed user instantly compose message and send it.
We still have it on our web site.
But the main drawback of this communication method is time. Users spend time composing and sending the email, don’t know if the message was received and when they can expect the response.
At the same time it’s hard to be proactive with email as the only contact method. What can you do to involve your website visitor into conversation, except making you email address easy to notice?
That is why, nowadays more and more customer-oriented companies implement live chats on their web pages. Instant messages, quick live conversations with customers\users are more suitable for the modern world speed. You and your customers don’t need to wait any more. Question-answer-question-answer-deal.
Our team recently decided to implement a chat on our web-site and it turned out that choosing a chat is not an easy task itself. The market is full of solutions – free of charge, paid, expensive, with multiple features or basic functionality. Hundreds of brands. You can easily find tons of different ratings and charts intended to help you with the choice, but only trying a few of those chats you can find one that is the best for your needs.
We have prepared our own review of the chat that was chosen by our team after several try-outs.
So the HitechServiceprize goes to… Tawk.to
A very helpful parrot that was surprisingly omitted by many charts we went through while doing the market research.
Anyways, we found it and want to share our user experience with you.
Part 1. Set up.
It is super easy to get started – says Tawk.to advertisement and we should agree.
The look of the app on your website is customizable, you can change the color of the chat pop-up, text on it and in it.
You might think that I skipped a payment part, but I didn’t.
“You never have to pay for live chat software again” – says Tawk.to web site. I don’t know about “never” but so far it’s free and we think we know why, but will share our ideas later.
So long story short – the chat is free and you don’t need to pay neither for installation nor for agents.
Part 2. Agents.
Agent creation is also a very simple procedure, just enter email of the agents and they will have an email with the link to set the password and display name.
Number of the agents per account is not limited, so if you have a big team – it’s not a problem. Tawk.to keeps their promise to have the chat free in this part as well. Other companies often limit you up to 5-10 accounts if you are using free version. It’s not the case. In addition you can separate your agents into multiple departments and set the rules to make an agent\department responsible for specific part of the chat.
According to the stats on tawk.to web-site they have already hit a number of 100000 agents using their system that is actually amazing considering the fact that production version of the application was released just a year ago.
Part 3. Application.
Application was the key word in the previous sentence. Your agents can use all kinds of devices – Windows, Mac OS, Android, IOS (I wasn’t surprised there’s no Windows Mobile, do you use it?), there is Tawk.to app for any of these systems. Of course the functionality for mobile devices is a bit limited, if you are an administrator but totally enough for agents. What is also important is a ability to be logged in on several devices simultaneously, so in case you’re going to the next room for coffee, chat will not be lost.
Part 4. Chat. (Yes, we finally move to the main part!)
Tawk.to allows both – internal and external communications.
Internal chat allows agents to communicate to each other, you can add several people to the conversation if you want. Can be very useful if you have several offices and your team is not sitting in one room. Unfortunately we did not find a way to message all agents at once or some kind of public chat room. Also there is no way to save a chat room, so you will have to invite agents every time if there is a need. But again, you are choosing chat for communication with customers\clients, not to each other.
External chat allows you to communicate with the website visitors and that’s what you are paying for (I mean not paying:-) ). The functionality here is nearly perfect. Tawk.to provides functionality to set automated messages to the visitor when one appears on site or to set more complicated rules based on time and actions performed by this user on site. This can be really useful for agents in both sales and support departments.
You can also start chat manually as soon as you see visitor on the page. And Tawk.to allows you to see if you have a visitor on your website and what page he or she is reading, It allows you to not only chat but also exchange files that can be helpful (for example if you need to get log files or transfer anything to the visitor).
Agents can also join and take over the chat from the other agent or even join the chat under the name of one of the agents who already joined it, so that the users do not even notice they are chatting with another person. Unlike with the internal chats you can’t invite other agent to join the chat with the client, and your colleague will have to find you in the list of active chats and join manually. This is not a very comfortable procedure especially if you have dozens of currently active chats.
Another valuable feature is Details section. You can enter name and email of the customer, see customer’s visit statistics and general detail – country, IP address of the user, browser and OS and put some notes. The last one is very valuable if you don’t use any kind of CRM, you can leave the details about the visitor for the next agent talking to the same person.
Part 5. Stats and Analytics. (The part with our assumptions).
In case you are using desktop app or accessing chat through browser, Tawk.to will provide you with a basic analytics on the dashboard.
Chat history, missed chats, live visitors, visitors per day – all this information is available.
As we mentioned in the previous part active visitors section provides more diverse information -, where the visitor came from and page he is on, IP and visitors location, OS and browser. Visitors are labeled with generic names, but visitor himself or agent can rename it. Visitor’s name is displayed with additional information: number of visits, duration of previous visits, and a number of chats visitor participated in.
However there is no way to run a custom statistics, let’s say visitors per region, or the list of the source pages – and that is, we thought, the part that Tawk.to was planning to charge for in future. Once we have released the review, Tawk.to team contacted us (via chat :)) and assured that despite the plans to improve their analytics, the app will remain 100% free.
There is a strong feeling that Tawk.to can return much more data than it displays on the dashboard and other parts of interface, but at this point developer is hiding it.
Since tawk.to shows the number of visitors it would be a big plus for this application to show more information (pages viewed, time spent, source, etc.) for each single IP visited, not just for those who started chat.
Telling the truth, we can’t wait for Tawk.to to implement this feature.
This is the part for those, who didn’t want to read all the numerous words above. As we said in the beginning, Tawk.to wasn’t our first choice and before switching to it we tried several other chats.
At this moment we see no reason to make any changes as we are happy with the current functionality, but as always we want MORE, and we have a feeling that in future we will get what we want, but in paid version. Here are the pros and cons of the Tawk.to chat according to HitechServicesupport team.
- not limited to a number of agents
- shows visitors live – source page, site browsing history, customization
- You don’t need to wait for a visitor to initiate the chat and start conversation yourself.
- Ability to join the existing chats of other agents
- file transfer
- general statistics for site visitors (visitors, page views, chats)
- free of charge
- Analytics for the offline user is not shown
- You can’t automate the chat initiation on behalf of free agent, only bot message is available.
- Analytics is very limited, you can only see the number of visitors, number of chats and the pages viewed. Be we can see that it’s stored on Tawk.to servers when comeback-user is online. According to Tawk.to team the analytics will be improved in the next versions and it will also be free of charge. We can’t wait for that!
Thank you for reading this review, if you find some mistakes, or something was described incorrectly, please let us know. We would appreciate any feedback and comments, and hope it helps you with your choice of chat.
- Posted by Author
- On November 9, 2015
- 0 Comments