Implementing Chat on Your WordPress Site

by | Feb 11, 2024 | WordPress, Plugin

One of the most common questions we get is, “Should I add chat functionality to my site?”

My answer is always the same:

Absolutely! And… No way!

First, Let’s Define Chat

Adding chat to your website allows visitors to instantly connect with you or your staff to get immediate results.  Chat is a two-way protocol that lets visitors on your website connect with your sales or support staff, and start a discussion. The topics are endless, and chats can be routed to the appropriate staff member based on topic, but the important part to know is that it is instant communication to your back office much like a text, SMS, or IM.

The Upside to Implementing Chat

Implementing Chat is an instant way to connect with your sales prospects or your existing clients.  If prospects or customers have questions there is no better way to show off your dedication to customer service than by providing them with answers or the information they need instantly through chat.

For that reason, we love chat!  In fact, at the bottom of the page, you may see our chat widget; that means we are online and available to take your chat. If the widget isn’t visible, it is after hours or we’re otherwise unavailable. We want to be accessible, but only when we’re actually accessible.

The Downside to Implementing Chat on Your Website

If you look above, you will notice the words instantly and immediately are italicized many times.  When you implement the chat widget on your site, you are establishing the expectation that you are instantly and immediately available to help your prospect or customer.  With a traditional contact form, the expectation is that you will reply via email sometime in the future, but with chat, the expectation is that the visitor will receive an instant response.

You have only a few seconds to connect to that user before they conclude that your company is inaccessible or unsupportive. Or both.

Do not implement chat if you are not able to staff it and respond instantly.

Implementing strategies such as designated chat response times, designated chat operators, and minimizing interruptions can help maintain the effectiveness of implementing chat services and provide a positive experience for website visitors. Here’s a list of our best practices when implementing chat on your website:

  • Instant Responses: Visitors expect quick responses when engaging in a chat service. Delayed responses can lead to frustration and potentially losing the visitor’s interest.
  • Minimize Distractions: It’s crucial to minimize distractions in the office environment to ensure full attention is given to the chat service. This includes avoiding phone calls, casual conversations with colleagues, or taking breaks such as getting tea or coffee.
  • Focus on the Conversation: Giving each conversation your full attention is essential. Visitors can quickly notice if they’re not receiving your complete focus, which may deter them from engaging further.
  • Coverage: It’s important to have adequate coverage to ensure someone is available to respond to chats consistently, even during breaks or when nature calls.

Unfiltered: How we feel about Chatbots

Let’s be honest here—chatbots?

They’re pretty terrible; actually, they suck.

Sure, artificial intelligence (AI) has come a long way in powering these bots, but let’s talk about the real issue: the user experience. Nothing kills the vibe more for a website visitor than expecting a live human to jump in, only to be hit with a canned response from a bot. It’s like a digital bait and switch, and visitors aren’t fooled. They came for personal assistance, not a robotic script.

And you know how this story goes. The visitor, feeling misled, either reluctantly picks up the phone or submits a support ticket, all while their trust in your brand takes a nosedive. And let’s face it, some of those prospects may not stick around—or worse, you might even lose a customer in the process.

At the end of the day, no chat at all is better than a bad chat experience.

Just Say No to Chat?

Actually, that’s not what I’m getting at. Let me clarify: Chat is an absolute game-changer. It can help you swiftly turn visitors into customers and provide stellar support for existing ones. Chat is downright awesome.

But—and it’s a big “but”—it only works its magic if there’s an instant response. Otherwise, it’s more of a liability, possibly driving prospects straight into the arms of your competitors or causing existing customers to call it quits.

Let Glimmernet Help You Implement Chat

If you’ve got the manpower to handle chat in-house, that’s the dream scenario! We’re all in to help you set it up and start turning those visitors into loyal customers!

So, if you’re thinking about implementing chat, let’s chat! We’d love to explore how to make it a seamless, efficient addition to your business without any hassle. Schedule a call with us today!



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