When you launch a website that offers a determined service to people, it’s imperative to establish different ways to be in permanent communication with your audience and one to do this is of course the chat. While some people prefer to communicate via email, filling the contact form, leaving comments or even the telephone, it’s certain that the chat is probably the most immediate way to contact the webmaster.
On this roundup we will be studying some of the essential chat services (free and not) that can be implemented in your web page, we will consider different aspects, including price, quality and difficulty of use, we hope you enjoy this article.
1. Crafty Syntax
The Crafty Syntax powered chat is a PHP programmed service that at no cost can be installed in an external website. The software offers a good customization levels that lets you adjust many aspects of it, you can also monitor the visitors and chat sessions while chatting with more than one person, which can be done in a single tab. You can execute a complete traffic analysis to determine the exact origin of your site’s traffic.
Another good service is the fact that you can see what the visitors are typing as they’re typing their message to you, in general this is a nice chat software.
You can check this out at http://www.craftysyntax.com/.
This site provides a top quality chat service that goes from a lite version at no cost to a business subscription with all the features included. Among the benefits of using Zopim is the end of pop-up windows, create automated messages, get complete traffic analysis of your live visitors, rank your costumers so you can always assist the most important clients and finally, trigger-based chats.
The lite version is free and can be upgraded to different versions [solo (9 USD/month), solo plus (15 USD/month), team (39 USD/month) and business(99 USD/month)].
The direct link to Zopim is http://www.zopim.com/.
One of the top chat services because it covers mostly all the functions of paid services at no cost, you can insert a live chat application inside your website to start getting in touch with your visitors. It also has a fully customizable capacity, you can edit things such as the chat button, chat window, pre-chat, offline message, etc.
This service currently offers an English, Spanish, German and Japanese support. Also you can customize your different chat styles from one site to another. Finally it’s important to notice that this is a hosted and open-source service.
Check out this chat service at http://www.comm100.com/livechat/
BoldChat is a software technology made for increasing website sales and improving customer service. Its price range goes from 29 to 199 USD per month, which may seem expensive if you’re not familiar with the features that you receive after subscribing, including proactive chat invitations, full customization, visitors monitoring, email management and much more.
You can look for the original source at http://www.boldchat.com/
Founded by a group of people from Palo Alto, CA. Olark is a paid live chat service whose prices oscillate from 15 to 149 USD per month. Among the services that they provide we can find the capacity of using multiple operators, compatibility with digital devices such as laptops, iPhone and Blackberry.
Other services include sending offline messages and hiding, complete visual customization, easy integration with your website, international support and analyze your visitors’ statistics in real time.
See more information about Olark at http://www.olark.com/portal/tour
Chatterous is live chat software that can be used from the web, IM, email or even the phone. Some of the features provided by this service are well integration with popular communications tools and no registration required. In general terms, a helpful chat implementation for your website.
Create your own chat room now at http://www.chatterous.com/.
7. Live Chat Now
With 19.50 USD per month you can access to this service, which includes and extended list of services, such as group conversations, preset library, auto answer, cha history, visitor’s transferring, live spelling / auto correction, auto invitations customized buttons and more.
Find the original web page on http://www.livechatnow.com/
Volusion is a web company that offers a lot of services included of course live chat, which comes in two different presentations, the Basic Live Chat (free) and the Premium Live Chat (29.95 USD / operator).
Some of the features of the Volusion chat are incoming alerts of new chat requests, “other person is typing” indicator, tabbed windows for multiple chats, online/offline status message, customers can email when you’re offline, customizable chat icons, Volusion branding below Click-To-Chat Icon and more.
Volusion website can be reached at http://www.volusion.com/live-chat/software.asp
With CustomerReach, you can choose the live chat service or run your own live chat server. You can start with a free account and upgrade up to a one time license fee starting at $399.00 USD.
This live chat software gives people the opportunity to chat with their customers while they’re visiting the website in order to provide help and support; it also allows companies to track, monitor and communicate with their website visitors in real-time, another service is that you can check the origin of the visitor and the keywords they had used to arrive to your website. Many other websites are waiting for you to discover them.
Download this live chat service at http://www.customerreach.com/default.aspx
PHPOpenChat is a high performance PHP-based free chat server software for a live chat-room or -module on every PHP-based site. At this time you can integrate this chat software into postnuke, phpbb, yabbse, etc. as a module.
Once in a while the developers of this chat provider release new bugs and updates that are designed to improve the capacity of the implementation. Recommendable for all webmasters and PHP users.
For more information about this live chat service, you can go to http://www.phpopenchat.org/.
Powerful tool, the OCC chat provider offers a free version of its chat that perfectly covers every company’s needs, making it a top choice to support your business, although you can upgrade to the premium version paying the amount of 29.95 dollars per year.
Among the free account complements we can mention multiple operators, handle multiple websites, chat invitations, web and desktop apps, stored messages, customizable chat request form, email signature, operator rating system, real time mouse tracking for co-browsing and much more, some included only on the Premium version.
Check out this powerful chat service only on http://www.onlinechatcenters.com/.
12. Website Alive
One of the most famous chat services on the interne, WebsiteAlive is a powerful tool that you can try by registering to the 10 days free-trial, after that the subscription prices oscillate from 29.95 USD to 97.95 USD per month.
Among the essential features of this provider we can list the dynamic buttons, which means that depending on the online status of your Operators, your “Live Chat Support Button” will change and your visitors will know immediately if you’re available for chatting. You can also send a chat transcript to any email address, capture leads when you’re offline, search and filter previous chat transcripts and plenty more ready for you to check.
Register for a free trial at http://www.websitealive.com/.
13. Ogg Chat
Ogg Chat is a unique live chat software that integrates with Gmail and Gtalk. If you feel good after the 14 days free-trial, you can go ahead and register to one of their plans, whose prices can go from 9.95 USD to more than 39.95 USD per month.
This is an unique among live chat software services as it incorporates features such as live visitor monitoring, live chat history, IP tracking, and customizable chat windows, but routes all chats directly to each operator’s Google Talk account. This means operators don’t need some special software or training, they just have to access their Gmail account or their IM client of choice and start accepting and answering to customer chat requests.
See more of Ogg Chat only on http://oggchat.com/.
Help Center Live is an open-source live chat system. You may easily provide live support on your website just like large companies do with few work. With Help Center Live, you can provide a real-time live support to costumers.
Because of its open-source nature, this chat service provider is being constantly updated and the potential errors are fixed. Good selection that deserves to be reviewed.
The HelpCenter website can be find it at http://www.helpcenterlive.com/.
This is certainly one of the best chat services of this countdown. LiveZilla is a free chat service featuring many nice complements, including an integrated real-time visitor monitoring feature that allows you to see instantly who is on your site, fully customizable chat elements.
LiveZilla also runs on your own web server, with no subsequent payments and 100% control over your data; the software is also able to resolute the Geo Location (based on IP-to-location) for the visitors on your website, another aspect is that it comes with a webcam support for more personalized chats. Make sure to check this out, we highly recommend it.
The original source for downloading LiveZilla is http://livehelp.livezilla.net/home/en/
16. LiveChat Volusion for Joomla
We found this chat service for the Joomla users, a non-commercial Joomla extension that will setup a chat inside your website so you can start chatting with your visitors.
This chat extension is perfect for anyone who wants to start providing live support for their visitors. You can also have multiple operator if you buy their Premium Edition.
Direct link to this website at http://extensions.joomla.org/extensions/communication/live-support-hosted/7755.
OneClickChat offers a timely and cost-effective solution to communicate live with your web site visitors; you can choose either the Personal Edition which has zero cost or the Professional that costs 9.99 USD per month.
Some of the features that this service offers are: Live interaction with your site visitors using a powerful rich-text chat application, transfer calls from one operator to another to improve your service, customize and use multiple configurations and languages for the button images and chat window, determine and use your own canned answers to save time when chatting with the visitors, see in real-time comprehensive information about your web site visitors, like the current web page and the time spend on each page, these and more services can be look for within the site.
One Click Chat is hosted at http://www.oneclickchat.com/.
Plupper is an integrated single point of contact software which makes the communication with customers or web page visitors simple. The price rates goes from a free account to a 1999 USD Dedicated service.
Plupper Widget is currently available in more than 10 different languages, including English, Spanish and French. Plupper talks to your GTalk client, you only need to set your Google account name in the operator settings page, all chats with operators are being saved and stored so you can search and browse your chat history whenever you like. With the Geo-location service you can locate any website visitor on the map with sufficient accuracy. These are just some of the services featured on Plupper, feel free to check all the rest.
Check out the Plupper web page at http://plupper.com/index.xhtml.
19. Shine Live Help
This is an improved version of Crafty Syntax, Shine Live Help is an open source chat software for website sales and support. It works as a standalone chat and integrates with Sugar Open Source CRM.
Source code for this project may be available as downloads or through one of the SCM repositories used by the project, as accessible from the project develop page.
The original website is featured at http://shinelivehelp.sourceforge.net/.
Live Chat software by UZoom focuses on combining cutting edge technology and powerful customer service to provide the best possible professional live chat services
You can find a useful data field where some of the most relevant live chat providers are analyzed and will help you to execute a thoughtful analysis. Their live chat service can be downloaded by simply copying and pasting a HTML code into your website.
Uzoom web page is hosted at http://www.uzoom.com/.
Hopefully you find at least one of this chat software accurate to cover your website’s needs, we tried to include both free and paid services, so you can make a conscious decision, take your time to review each one of this sites and let us know what do you think about them.