The live chat channel serves many “touches” along the increasingly multi-touchpoint B2B and B2C buying journeys.
Shoppers use it to find answers to their pre-sales queries. Forrester’s research shows that site visitors who use web chat are about three times more likely to buy from you than those who don’t.
People also use it to access post-sales support and make service requests once they become customers. According to Gartner, the live chat channel is the second most preferred channel for customer service. When combined with other self-service channels, it can decrease your live support request volume by up to 40% — resulting in significant savings in the cost of delivering support, while ensuring speedier resolutions.
B2C and B2B businesses alike rely on live chat. But a lot of your success with the live chat channel depends on the software you use to power it. Among everything else, your live chat software should help you deliver a seamless sales and support experience across the entire buying journey.
The 15 best live chat software for sales and support teams
JivoChat for a full-featured all-in-one web messenger
Chaport for a plug-and-play website live chat solution
Podium for a complete local user engagement and business chat app
Heymarket for using the text (SMS) channel for driving conversations
Nexa for a done-for-you live chat service
Amity Chat for building 100% custom chat solutions
Dixa for delivering more seamless customer experiences
Social Intents for bringing live chat to Slack and Microsoft Teams
Genesys for robust enterprise-grade web messaging
HubSpot for businesses already using the HubSpot ecosystem
Inbenta for bringing advanced AI to live chats
Pure Chat for basic live chat
Acquire for delivering better customer experiences
SnapEngage for intelligent enterprise-grade chatbot and live chatting
AvoChat for combining live chat and text messaging
Key Considerations When Choosing a Live Chat Software
A live chat software — just like any other business software you use — is a significant business investment. So before you make a final decision, evaluate each option using the following criteria.
Price point. Most live chat solutions come with multiple premium plans, with the highest tier plan offering the most value. So review what’s included in each plan carefully as you might end up having to upgrade if you settle for a slimmed-down entry-level plan.
Onboarding. About 63% of people review a brand’s onboarding program when making a purchasing decision. Why? Because the sooner you onboard a solution and learn your way around it, the sooner you can start seeing the value from your investment. Ensure that your live chat solution is easy to onboard.
Scalability. Before signing up for a contract, think about what your solution will cost you when you go from five users to fifteen, and so on. Also, evaluate how different live chat pricing scales as your message volume grows.
Features. In addition to the core functionality of adding a live chat channel to your website (or app), your live chat solution should offer all the features that you need. For example, if you’re an eCommerce business active on Instagram, your live chat software should support Instagram’s messenger. Likewise, if you’re a B2B business, your chat solution should support proactive chats using triggers (like a visitor’s or lead’s visit to the pricing page).
Security. Brands use the live channel to facilitate all kinds of conversations. Naturally, it should be safe to use. Not only should your chat solution offer end-to-end encryption for the chats — the same safety standards that leading messengers use — but also secure its own infrastructure.
Customization. Ensure that your live chat software solution lets you customize your chat experience. You should be able to add custom styling to make your chat widget match your brand.
Omnichannel functionality. An omnichannel live chat solution is simply one that lets your users connect with you everywhere. So look for a solution that fields chats via channels like WhatsApp, Facebook, Telegram, and Apple Business Chat.
15 Best Live Chat Software for Sales and Support Teams
The live chat software market is pretty crowded. Some solutions (like JivoChat) are a good fit for almost any business looking to get started with the live chat channel, while others target very specific user segments. So let’s look at 15 of the best live chat software out there, along with the businesses they serve best.
Powering the live chat channel for 250,562 businesses (and counting), JivoChat brings to your business a unified inbox that fields every message your users send you. It’s an “all-in-one” business messenger that lets your users connect with your business from their favorite communication channels (phone, email, social media messengers like WhatsApp, Facebook, Telegram, Instagram, and more). This live chat software offers a mix of features to support a host of sales and service chat use cases.
All-in-one business messenger software that works on every major platform - Facebook, Instagram, Telegram, WhatsApp, among many others.
Sales and service chatbots
Canned messages to make your agents more productive
Comes with a one-click call and a callback feature allowing phone support
Event-based chat triggers
Real-time visitor monitoring and chat analytics
Sync omnichannel messaging to your CRM
This live chat software is best suited for: Any business looking to enable omnichannel web messaging for its customers.
Jivochat’s free plan supports five agents and offers unlimited chat interactions; its premium plan unlocks every feature of the solution and costs $19/user/month, when billed annually. | Free Trial
Trusted by over 30,000 businesses for their live chat channel, Chaport offers a “better way to talk to your customers” with its live chat widget that works 24/7 for you (even when your agents or sales people are offline). Chaport also comes with custom chatbots and a centralized inbox to power your conversations happening both on your website and over other channels (including social media messaging apps).
Custom chatbots for sales and support
Doubles up as a knowledge base tool (requires at least the business plan)
Detailed visitor analytics brings context to conversations
Suite of productivity tools to facilitate conversations
Highly customizable chat window
Supports auto-replies (if agents are busy or unavailable)
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking for a dedicated web chat software.
Chaport offers a free plan; premium plans start at $15/user/month (when billed annually). | Free Trial
Unlike the other live chat software options on this list, Podium — powering service for 100,000+ businesses — focuses exclusively on local providers and offers everything they “need to win.” Podium offers three key functionalities. In addition to being a live web chat solution that’s built exclusively around the needs of single- and multi-location local businesses, Podium supports collecting payments (via multiple gateways) and running SMS campaigns.
Unified inbox to streamline all customer conversations
Online reputation management allowing users to collect and respond to reviews
Offers physical card readers to facilitate payments at local outlets
Supports video chats for face-to-face interactions
Lets you create personalized text marketing campaigns at scale
Works as a survey tool for collecting feedback
Comes with autoresponders and smart responses
This live chat software is best suited for: Local businesses looking for an all-in-one growth management and customer engagement solution.
Pricing is available upon request. | Contact for pricing
Heymarket is a “business text messaging” solution that enables the SMS text channel on your website using which your users can text you. In addition to enabling one-on-one texting with customers, Heymarket also lets you build your contact base and launch personalized text campaigns at scale.
Shared inbox to streamline conversations across multiple channels
Targeted SMS/MMS campaigns
Supports texting messaging
Integrations with popular CRM and help desk platforms
Hassle-free message routing, assignment, and collaboration
Shared inbox for Facebook Pages and Google My Business listings
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses heavily leveraging the text/CMS channel.
Premium plans start at $49/month (when billed annually) and support 12,000-60,000 messages per year (depending on the plan). | Free Trial
Nexa offers you a “people-powered live chat” solution. In addition to the live chat software, you get access to a team of expert agents to handle the channel on your behalf. Essentially, Nexa’s chat agents engage with your visitors and offer them the answers or service they seek, and route the conversations to you when it makes sense.
Virtual receptionist answering all chat queries
Nexa executives answer your phone calls
Local toll-free number for phone support
Services are available in English and Spanish
Appointment scheduling — looping you in only when it’s needed
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking for a done-for-you live chat service and software.
Nexa offers a range of voice and chat support plans; plans start at $140/month with support for up to 20 chats. | Explore Nexa
Unlike the other live chat software solutions on this list, Amity Chat isn’t a plug-and-play solution. Instead, it’s a development kit (SDK) that lets you build a robust chat channel for your web app or website. It’s essentially the backend of a great live chat solution and you’re expected to create the front end (chat window) and set up the required integrations.
Robust SDK to build a fully customized 1-1 chat channel
Supports group chatting
Supports event engagement tools such as facebook live streaming
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses that have very custom needs from their live chat channel and have the development bandwidth to invest in building it.
Amity charges @0.06/for every MAU (monthly active user) plus additional fees for things like file storage and bot messages. etc. | Free Trial
The live chat channel is one key solution that Dixa offers as part of its customer experience suite. With Dixa’s live chat software, you can avoid siloed service experiences by bringing all your customer conversations from different channels like email, social media messengers, and more to a single place. Dixa wants to put “Customer Friendship™” at the heart of all your brand-user communications.
Customizable chat widget to match your brand
Seamless transition between bot and live support
Real-time visitor analytics
AI-powered knowledge base software
Each customer gets a single searchable timeline plotting every touchpoint they’ve had with a business
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking to invest in a customer experience suite.
Pricing is available upon request. | Explore Dixa
Trusted by more than 65,000 users, Social Intents brings your live chat channel straight to your Slack or MS Teams account. With Social Intents, you can handle incoming chat messages right from inside your favorite daily work apps. All you need to do is set up a live chat channel in your communications app, put up the code for the live chat widget on your website, and set up the integration.
Branded chat widget
Supports unlimited agents
Supports proactive chats
Respond to chat messages directly from Slack and Microsoft Teams
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking for a solution that works natively in Slack or Microsoft Teams.
The entry-level premium plan costs $29/mo (when billed yearly) and supports 150 chats/month. | Explore SocialIntents
Powered with all the productivity tools a sales or service representative needs, the Genesys live chat software empowers your business to offer “in the moment” support to your users. It lets you engage with your customers on whatever channels they use (SMS, WhatsApp, social media messengers, etc.).
Multichannel web messaging
Event-based chat triggers
Visitor activity analytics
Supports both live chat and asynchronous web messaging
Screen sharing and co browsing
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking for a robust, enterprise-grade live chat software.
Pricing is available upon request. | Explore Genesys
The HubSpot live chat software lets you add a customizable live chat widget to your website and bring all your website conversations to a universal inbox. HubSpot’s live chat solution works best when combined with HubSpot’s free CRM solution.
Customizable chat window
Central inbox automatically saves all web conversations
Rich contextual information via HubSpot’s CRM
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses that work with or are exploring the HubSpot ecosystem.
HubSpot Live chat is free to use; advanced features need access to HubSpot’s sales and marketing hub plans. | Free Trial
Inbenta offers a mix of a ticketing system and a live chat software. Inbenta shines at escalating conversations from a chatbot to a live support agent using AI. Also, Inbenta fields incoming messages across multiple channels like email, social media platforms, and forums and converts them into tickets for your agents.
Fully-featured ticketing solution
Seamless routing between bot and human support
Omnichannel: picks comments, messages, and queries from any channel
Agent assignment and ticket routing
Leverages AI to explain ticket content and intent to agents
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking primarily for a ticketing solution but with a focus on enabling better conversations for resolving them.
Pricing is available upon request. | Free Trial
Backed by more than 14,000 customers, Pure Chat is a simple live chat software that does just one thing — help you add a live chat channel to your website — but does it well. It’s intentionally simple; the website copy says “Everything you need, nothing you don’t.”
Customizable chat widget
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking for a basic live chat software.
Pure Chat’s premium plans start at $49/mo; you can add more users at $15/mo. | Free Trial
Acquire offers an easy-to-use live chat software that your customers can use to launch text, voice, and video chats. By bringing all your customers’ interactions in one place and with its support for bots, Acquire lets you streamline your sales and service conversations and offer meaningful responses sooner.
Supports web, voice, and video chats
Supports co browsing sessions
Customizable chat widget
Translates to more than a hundred languages
All-in-one engagement dashboard to streamline customer interactions
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking to deliver better customer experiences.
Pricing is available upon request. | Explore Acquire
SnapEngage lets you add the live chat channel to your customer service and sales mix. Its superpowers lie in its bots (Info-Capture Bot, Guide Bot, Answer Bot, etc.) that result in more sales opportunities and faster (automated) support resolutions. Support for multi-channel conversations, a host of productivity tools, and integrations with CRM and help desk software solutions make SnapEngage a good fit for most businesses.
Bots for automating sales, operations, and service conversations
Collect visitor information and run surveys
Offers multi-channel support
Brandable chat widget
Canned responses and pre-chat forms
Click-to-call and text-to-chat functionalities
Supports co browsing
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking to use chatbots for their support and sales operations.
In addition to the platform fee, SnapEngage’s essentials premium plan charges $16/user/month (when billed annually). | Free Trial
AvoChat allows you to connect with leads and customers via two channels: web live chat and text. It brings all your conversations to a single dashboard and helps you streamline your sales and service delivery ops. AvoChat also works inside Salesforce.
Shared inbox brings all your web messages, texts, and call data into one place
Use the SMS channel to connect with your customers and leads
Integrate phone support
Auto responses based on knowledge base and FAQ content
Works seamlessly with Microsoft Teams and Salesforce
This live chat software is best suited for: Businesses looking for a hybrid solution for the live chat and text channels.
Avochat offers a free plan; its premium plans start at $19 per month per user. | Free Trial
Which Live Chat Software Is the Best for You?
Choosing the best live chat software for your business comes down to aligning features and functionality. In addition to the core functionality of adding live chat to your website, your live chat software should double up a web messaging solution — enabling customer conversations everywhere, from a single dashboard.
JivoChat brings this and a lot more to your business, and at an extremely affordable price. Plus, it comes with an intuitive dashboard that your support and sales staff will love to use every day.
Businesses report a positive impact on sales and service delivery within just days of adding JivoChat to their websites. Sign up for a free account and see for yourself!