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Professional Webmaster Business Issues Forum

Live Support
Is it worth it?

 2:12 am on Feb 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

We are opening a new website, and are considering adding a 24 hour live support. As we already offer 24 hour phone service, it won't incur much additional payroll expense.

At first it looks like a good idea, but I'm sure I'm not seeing some potential negative sides, and I like to argue both features and negatives before I implement anything.

Have you added live support, or used it on another site, and had a very positive or negative experience?

Thank you.



 4:13 am on Feb 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

It is a must for any ecommerce site. Can make a huge difference when going through the check out...


 8:56 am on Feb 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

Here's a thread from a week or so ago that addressed the pros and cons of offering LiveChat...



 1:47 pm on Feb 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

Seems when it rains it pours. I got a request last night from another site which is a nonprofit content site about live chat.

Can anyone recomend an open source program to be installed on server running freebsd for live chat?

Has anyone had experience with the paid solutions? Don't want to violate the TOS, but I noticed the market seems to be dominated by 3-5 companies who services which aren't hosted on your site, image swaping based on offline/online availabilty, message leaving, etc. If you recomend a product, please do so (here or sticky).

Thank you.


 1:53 pm on Feb 3, 2004 (gmt 0)


we are using HumanClick/LivePerson (www.liveperson.com) for many years now. We are still the only ones in our industry to use it. Visitors just LOVE it. However, it very quickly becomes rather expensive.

Over the last weeks, I found possible alternatives. However, I have not evaluated them so far. Here they are:

- Crafty Syntax Live Help (craftysyntax.com/CSLH/)
- phpOnline (www.dayanahost.com/phponline.cfm)

Both seem to be open source. Any reports on these two would be appreciated.


 4:12 pm on Feb 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

I use LivePerson.

While the chat is nice, it is expensive. There are other free scripts to do the same thing.

To me, the real benefit of LivePerson is that I have the ability to see who browses what, for how long, and where they come from.

This is of enormous value to me. It's like watching people browse shelves in my store in real time. We have implemented tweaks and changes to the site design and navigation from some of what we have learned watching people browse.

Chat isn't worth much. Real time monitoring and demographics is priceless.


 4:19 pm on Feb 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

Do any of these have the ability to block users based by IP or another reliable method?


 4:29 pm on Feb 3, 2004 (gmt 0)


If it's no additional payroll expense, do it. A 'Live Help' button it self will give a boost to the confidence of your customer.

However, you will be suprised to see how little it will be used by your customers. Our experince is less than 5% customer would use it.

We offer services from Sri Lanka and by the nature of our services the customers should have tons of questions to ask us. But rather than using the chat, they go through FAQs most the time.

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