Live support software
Live support software (also called live chat and live help) is another term for online chat applications designed specifically to provide immediate online assistance to website users. Chat is mainly used for text-based communication. However, software providers also bundle services including voice, video, helpdesk and CRM systems along with the text-based chat.
The system typically consists of 2 components:
- A text box on the website.
- An operator dashboard that allows the agent to respond to the chat and potentially access supporting resources.
The two types of chat are:
- ProActive chat - In this case, the text box pops up on its own and displays a message to the visitor. This message can be customized based on different criteria such as the amount of time the user has spent on the website, the pages they visited, etc. The visitor can then choose whether or not to respond to the message.
- Broadcast - In this case, the chat is initiated by the visitor.
Typically, live support applications open a window that connects the user to an agent. Some software queues users so that a staff member can automatically move to from one customer to the next. The customer's position in the queue may be displayed for the user.
Live support can be provided via voice communication. The customer enters their phone number and the application later initiates a connection between the client and representative.
Some live support applications are written in low-level languages (e.g., C++) and distributed as compiled software that must be installed on a server. Others are written in dynamic languages, such as PHP, that can be modified as desired.