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A Real-Time Paradigm Shift

What if you could interact with the viewer of your site

     
6:56 pm on Nov 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Now, I'm not talking about those balloon popup chat windows.
I'm talking about something slicker, slimmer, leaner.

Picture this:
You're looking at the Google “Real Time” Analytics and see the number of active visitors on the site, which page their browsing, and then one of them lands on the perfect page for you to gently jump in an ask “Hey, is there anything I can help you with or answer any questions which you might have about XYZ product/service/event."

Nothing invasive, just casual.
If someone made a plug-in or widget to do this soft selling, it would be a paradigm shift in online marketing.
This would be focused targeted marketing/selling.
If you don't ask, you don't get.

And you can take that one to the BANK………… unless it’s already been done, of course. ;)
7:00 pm on Nov 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

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"Hey, I can't help but notice that you're looking at the typical plumbing layout for a sprinkler system. Is there any way that I can be of assistance?"

Wait. Shut The Front Door.
What if it's a done via a webcam and you can interact with them. Of course, you would ask their permission first. Can You Say "Hang-Out"?
9:03 pm on Nov 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Potential customer (of site, not of proposed widget): "Uh, no, just looking" -- followed by rapid departure, deletion of all cookies, double-checking webcam barrier and wiping of browser history.

Unless, ahem, you're targeting the idea at the Internet equivalent of 900 numbers...

Sorry. But that was my immediate gut reaction.
9:10 pm on Nov 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Nothing invasive, ...

We apparently have vastly different definitions of "invasive".

Those "live support" windows are annoying enough as it is.

[edited by: ken_b at 9:16 pm (utc) on Nov 2, 2012]

9:12 pm on Nov 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Can you say ..creepy..
9:24 pm on Nov 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

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OMG NO, not 900 #'s. or anything like that.

I was thinking something more thing lines of a small text box coming in from screen side asking if they want to "Hang Out" and discuss anything on the site.

If they did, then it would open a Google Hang Out. I don't see that as pushy or anything else like that. I kinda see it like Google NOW.
9:29 pm on Nov 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

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As a user, I agree with the other comments- seems way too invasive.

As a site owner, I could definitely see the usefulness of this for some sites.

Have you seen/used Woopra? One of my clients uses it. It sounds like it may have the functionality you're discussing.
9:33 pm on Nov 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

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OT ... what are 900's? (i assume some kind of adult service)

i think the concept is perfect if the whole site was focused that way... eg like an online virtual shop with assistants, who would immediately answer questions if asked and would even chat about the product. but the visitor needs to ask first, rather that be jumped on.
i think a LOT of punters would like this, i've been pondering how to do it myself on my own very niche site.
10:40 pm on Nov 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

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OT ... what are 900's? (i assume some kind of adult service)

It's a premium-rate telephone number that's commonly, but not exclusively used by adult services.
7:48 pm on Nov 4, 2012 (gmt 0)

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topr8
I've given this some deeper thought after my Saturday mediatation and I think you're right in that we should DEFINATELY ask for permission.

I'm thinking of a nice "hook" on the site in which we state [on page] that if they would like further assistance a Hang-Out is possible.... or as always they can just call.

A large percentage of our customer's do end up calling us and getting to know us as a company prior to the sale.

I'm not sure how this will increase/decrease sales.
So, now we're going to look into strategically beta testing this in the site on some pages.

I'm just not sure the marketplace is mature enough for this yet. By mature I don't mean adolescent vs. elderly but as a society.
7:50 pm on Nov 4, 2012 (gmt 0)

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How is this going to effect the dress code in the office when we start hanging out?

Is Casual Friday Out the Door?
12:21 am on Nov 5, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Some sites do have a Live Help option, with a flag telling whether it's currently available or not. This of course is not much good if your human helpers are only there from 9-5 in your physical time zone, while your shoppers come from all over the world and/or do their online shopping in the middle of the night.