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I’ll ask you once again. Are you STILL using live text chat?

In the past few weeks, I have talked about the different types of live chat software available for businesses. In this blog, I’ve even spoken about the six best live chat software for startups. Why then am I asking this question? Because the emphasis largely lies on the word ‘text’.

You could say that I am asking this question because I am part of a video conferencing company. So, in the interest of fairness to the Live Text Chat companies, let’s first list out the pro’s of a live text chat software like Instant Messenger, AOL or Tokbox.

ADVANTAGES OF LIVE TEXT CHAT

1. CONSTANT COMMUNICATION WITH CUSTOMERS AND EMPLOYEES

The main function of any live chat software is to enable businesses to be in constant contact with customers and clients. And a live text chat software companies like Messenger and Yahoo provide businesses with just that. No matter where they are located, with the help of live text chat software, businesses can contact their customers in real time, anytime.

A live text chat software also enables employees to communicate within the company. Within the company, colleagues can send and receive messages in real time without any direct communication.

2. CREATES A VIRTUAL CONFERENCE MEETING

A live text chat software allows real time communication and sharing of work reports or documents, creating a virtual conference meeting. With the help of these software, companies can save time and energy by conducting virtual conference chats. This saves money as well as employees don’t have to travel to further away places for meetings.

These are just two of the main advantages of using a live text chat software in businesses. There are a lot more advantages of a live text chat software, but the point is, that all of these functions are fulfilled by a live video chat software as well.

A live video chat software too enables businesses to communicate with their customers in real time. It too allows employees to communicate within the company without any direct contact. And a live video chat software allows businesses to create a virtual conference call as well.

Now, let us discuss the disadvantages of a live text chat software and how a live video chat software overcomes all of these disadvantages.

DISADVANTAGES OF LIVE TEXT CHAT SOFTWARE

1. ABSENCE OF A PERSONAL TOUCH

Though live text chat software enable constant communication over the chat window, these software take away the face-to-face value of communication. It removes the personal touch a one-on-one communication provides. Real time communication is an amazing advantage, but losing the emotional attachment with your customer because of the lack of face-to-face communication is a huge disadvantage for the company.

2. LACK OF CREDIBILITY

Customers use text chat software to talk to the employees. They type out their queries, suggestions and compliments to the so-called employee. But how certain can you be that the person you are talking to is an employee of the company itself?

Because of the lack of face-to-face communication, not knowing who you are talking to through the instant messaging service can be extremely dangerous if you are not careful. Uncertainty about if the person you are talking to is the person you are talking to is especially dangerous when you are not very familiar with the things and risks of the Internet.

3. SECURITY LAPSES IN LIVE TEXT CHAT SOFTWARE

Employees can share documents and related files with each other during a virtual conference meetings. As it is, you might be unsure if the person you are talking really is who he says he is. Above it all, you will be sharing confidential and official documents with him.

Due to the lack of face-to-face communication, there are a lot of security risks involved in live text chat software.

4. TEXT CHAT IS INCOMPREHENSIBLE, AND WASTES TIME

Most of the time, live text chat software have a word limit.

This could be extremely annoying when employees have to explain detailed procedures to the customers. It is not just inconvenient for the employee to type out the entire thing, it also challenging for the customer to understand the concept in so many messages. It would also be a huge waste of time.

When I mentioned the advantages of live text chat software I also mentioned that a live video chat software provides all of the advantages mentioned. However, the beauty of a live video chat software is that it has taken all the disadvantages of a live text chat software and overcome all of those disadvantages.

And the best part is that all of those disadvantages is solely due to one feature – the lack of face-to-face communication. With a live video chat software, obviously, this disadvantage is overcome.

Now, lets discuss the advantages of a live video chat software.

ADVANTAGES OF LIVE VIDEO CHAT SOFTWARE OVER LIVE TEXT CHAT SOFTWARE

live-chat-software

1. PROVIDES A PERSONAL TOUCH TO CONVERSATIONS

In the disadvantages of a live text chat software, we mentioned that constant instant messaging took away the personal and human touch from conversations. However, with a live video chat software, businesses can not only keep in constant touch with their customers in real time, they can also provide them with the human touch they would get if they were shopping in person.

Reports have shown that, despite the comfort of e-commerce websites, people still prefer shopping in a retail shop than over the internet. One possible reason for this could be the personal touch one gets from a retail store. If e-commerce websites can provide this personal touch through a live video chat why wouldn’t they use it?

A study report showed, nearly 7% of the population prefer using a live video chat over other chat software. This would probably be a small number when compared to others, but the live video chat industry is still at its initial stages. And if we have got a 7% in its starting stages, it is definitely worth mentioning. For more details on how and why a live video chat software is a better tool to improve customer loyalty and support go through this article.

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2. CREDIBLE AND SECURED CONVERSATIONS

With face to face communication, half the battle is won. When you can see who you are talking to, you can identify and be sure of who you are conversing with and sharing your confidential documents. With live video chat software, you can speak and share documents, without worrying about security and whom you are sharing it with. With live video chat there is absolutely no space or word constraint.

Employees can talk to their customers, and vice versa, until all of their problems are cleared. No matter how long or short the issue is, employees are sure to explain every issue in detail until the customer is fully thorough with the product.

3. A PROACTIVE LIVE VIDEO CHAT SOFTWARE

According to a research done by Forrester, 27% of online consumers prefer having an online chat box appear and ask if they need help with an online purchase. For example, employees figure that a particular customer is roaming around the FAQ page for a long time, your online video chat pops up and you ask the customer if they need help with their purchase. Wouldn’t it be amazing to receive help even before you ask for it?

This is called a proactive chat software and researches have shown that customers prefer a proactive chat software rather than having to ask for the help. Incorporating with proactive live video chat not just satisfies your customers but also improves sales and management relationships.

And for those customers who do not prefer being visible to a stranger, our video calling software provides an audio chat option as well.

However, here is a warning to all video chat software companies. Another research by Forrester has shown that as concurrency increases, agent satisfaction decreases.

Concurrency is the process of multitasking. In live video chat language, it is the process of multi-point communication, i.e, talking to several people at a time.

However, according to the research, there is a limit up to which people can multitask. And beyond this point, people tend to get irritated and frustrated. So limit the number os multi-point chats your live video chat software allows.

So I shall repeat my question one last time. Are you still using live text chat?

Because if you are it is high time you switched to an audio or video live chat software.

This post was originally posted on August 8, 2014. It has since been updated to improve accuracy and comprehensiveness. 

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