Live Chat for Customer Support: Benefits and Best Platforms

updated March 26, 2024
Reading time12 minutes
Jaqueline Corradi
Jaqueline Corradi
Content Manager

Live chat for customer support can enhance customer experience and straighten your relationship with your target audience. This happens because when you implement a live chat, you can solve customer problems faster and more efficiently.

Instead of having to call your company, all it takes is to enter your website, access the live chat, and send a message. Your customer support team takes charge of answering them immediately, optimizing the service, and helping with customer satisfaction. Keep reading to learn more about it.

What Is Live Chat?

Live chat is an application that you can install on your website, so everyone who visits it will be able to send a message to your sales or customer support team and receive an answer in real-time from a human, not a chatbot.

Probably, you have already noticed a window that pops up on the corner of your screen with a personalized message, such as "What can I help you with?", and an answer box so you can start chatting. The best live chat for customer support allows you to personalize the message based on trigger actions and the page the user is on.

This part is similar to what a chatbot would do, as the message is automatic. The difference is that, with live chat for customer support, the customer has the opportunity to talk with someone from your team, instead of just receiving bot messages.

Your team can keep track of customer interactions and will be notified once someone sends a message. It will be redirected to the employee in charge of answering them, and you can have access to important metrics such as lead response time, and conversion rate that are usually provided by the live chat for customer support through analytic features.

How Live Chat Support Works

Usually, the live chat code is embedded in the website's code, then the widget will appear on the pages of your choice. Many live chats for customer support, including JivoChat, allow you to personalize the widget design and message to match your brand's identity. You can set up multiple messages and define triggers to when they should pop up on the visitor's screen.

You and your team must install the live chat for customer support on your computers and mobile devices to keep track of the interactions. It's possible to integrate the live chat app with other management and communication platforms, such as CRM (customer relationship management), Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Email, and much more.

This way, you can manage all the messages in a single place, and create customer profiles based on them. When a message is sent through the live chat, your team receives a notification, and they can see all the previous interactions from this same person.

6 Live Chat for Customer Support Benefits

1. Easy to Use for Agents and Customers

A live chat for customer support is easy to use for both sides. Customers will find an intuitive interface in the format of a pop-up window where they just need to write their questions and press send to start a conversation. They can receive their answer in a few seconds, and the live chat app will redirect them to talk to an agent, if necessary.

Agents, on the other hand, can manage all customer interactions in a centralized dashboard where it's possible to create customer profiles, analyze data to get useful insights, create and assign tasks, and automate repetitive tasks.

2. Quick Problem Resolution

Having to solve problems with customer support is already a task that most people want to avoid dealing with. Losing hours because of that is frustrating, but you can prevent that by offering an efficient live chat for customer support.

With a well-prepared customer support team, customers can easily contact your company and solve their demands. This has a positive impact on how your brand is perceived and encourages customers to buy again on your website and even recommend it to their friends and family.

3. Reduce Costs

Keeping a call center is much more expensive than using a live chat, and you can reduce the number of calls significantly. Besides, by aligning the live chat with a chatbot, it's possible to offer 24/7 customer support without spending more.

4. Enhance Customer Experience

User experience refers to how someone feels when visiting a web page, while customer experience is about the buying journey. Both of them are fundamental when it comes to how people perceive your brand.

If you have a live chat, you can enhance both customer and user experience. When navigating through your website, the visitors can count on immediate support.

5. Increase Sales

You can close more sales by solving customer questions right away. Instead of waiting for an email response or calling your company, for instance, the customer can just send a message about what is preventing him from completing a purchase and receive appropriate help immediately.

Your sales team must be able to identify the best solution and offer it to the customer, preventing you from losing deals. Besides, receiving personalized help adds credibility to your company, and improves customer satisfaction.

6. Increase Customer Loyalty

The use of live chat software helps to straighten the relationship with your customers. Talking directly to them enables you to get to know them better and have insights about how to improve services and products to solve their demands.

On the other hand, customers know they can count on efficient and quick support when they need it, through live chat, which encourages them to keep buying from your business. It's possible to nurture a long relationship with them.

How to Offer Good Customer Service through Live Chat

1. Be Proactive

Instead of waiting for website visitors to notice the live chat window on the screen, you can send a personalized message to catch their attention. Trigger messages based on customer behavior and engage with your audience,

2. Show Customers Live Agents Are Available

You can add a message in the live chat widget emphasizing that the messages sent will be answered by a real agent and not a chatbot. This encourages people to engage in a conversation.

3. Train Your Live Agents

Your team needs to be prepared to offer the best service possible. Before installing the live chat software, train them how to use the software and create guidelines for customer support. Your team needs to know how to deal with customer issues and keep the communication aligned with your brand's values.

4. Don't Leave Your Customers Waiting

Response time matters. Customers don't have the patience to wait for an answer, therefore organize your team to check the live chat messages and answer them as fast as possible.

if customers have to wait too long to be answered they are likely to feel frustrated, and this can damage your brand's image.

12 Best Live Chat for Customer Support

1. JivoChat

JivoChat live chat example

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.

It allows your users to 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 lots of sales and service chat use cases.

Key features:

  • 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
  • It 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

2. LiveChat

LiveChat home page

Beyond enabling customers to interact in real-time via messages on your website, LiveChat integrates multiple communication channels in one platform. You and your team can manage every interaction from one place. You can have as many customized chat widgets as you need on different websites.

Key features:

  • Chat widget
  • Chat ratings
  • Integrate multiple messaging channels
  • Customization tools
  • Chat and agent reports
  • Ecommerce integration
  • Work scheduler
  • Encryption

3. Zendesk

Zendesk website

Zendesk allows you to personalize the live chat experience on your website, and in other communication channels too. Enjoy AI solutions to solve customer problems faster, and use the agent workspace to access every customer interaction in one place. Another benefit is receiving reports with important metrics to evaluate performance.

Key features:

  • Personalize conversations across channels
  • Ticketing system
  • Modify Zendesk to meet your needs
  • Data privacy and protection
  • Agent workspace
  • Integrations
  • Workforce management

4. LiveAgent

LiveAgent website

LiveAgent offers you an all-in-one customer care solution. You can connect with your customers on multiple channels and manage everything from one platform. It provides a fast chat widget that can help you increase your earnings by 48%. Use the ticketing system to organize customer support and save up to 95% time and money.

Key features:

  • All-in-one customer care solution
  • Connect with customers on multiple channels
  • Fast chat widget
  • Personalized customer service
  • Call recordings
  • Ticketing system
  • Integrations
  • Proactive chat invitations

5. ProProfs

ProProfs home page

ProProfs can be seamlessly integrated into the most popular ecommerce platforms and CMS (content management systems), such as Shopify, Magento, and WordPress. Your customer support and sales team will be able to reach clients instantly, solve their demands faster, and increase the chance of closing more sales.

Instead of waiting for a response via email, which takes time, your customers can interact in real-time with your team. The operators can use features such as canned responses, and send self-help articles.

Key features:

  • Easily transfer chats
  • Answer faster with canned responses
  • Anticipate customer questions
  • Add self-help articles
  • Set chat invitation pop-up
  • Set individual operator greetings
  • Add announcement
  • Send personalized greetings

6. Tidio

Tidio home page

With more than 300.000 users, Tidio enables you to talk to customers in real-time and boost customer satisfaction. You can manage all your channels with one tool, speed up replies by creating canned responses, and use the Tidio app on computers or mobile devices. It's also possible to track the pages each customer visited on your website and see what your customers are typing before they hit send.

Key features:

  • Manage all your channels with one tool
  • Canned responses
  • Viewed pages
  • Live visitor list
  • Live typing
  • Pre-chat surveys
  • Customer database

7. Olark

Olark home page

Olark is a live chat software developed to include people with disabilities, making your website more accessible. It was tested to comply with WCAG (web content accessibility guidelines) 2.1 AA standards. You can enable not only live chat but also a chatbot powered by AI. You will find many automation tools to help you save time and improve customer experience.

Key features:

  • Accessible live chat
  • AI-powered chatbot
  • 100+ plugins and integrations
  • Live chat transcripts
  • Analytics
  • Custom chatbox forms

8. HubSpot

HubSpot live chat page

The HubSpot live chat software lets you add a customizable live chat widget to your website and brings all your website conversations to a universal inbox. HubSpot's live chat solution works best when combined with HubSpot's free CRM solution.

Key features:

  • Customizable chat window
  • Central inbox automatically saves all web conversations
  • Chatbot builder
  • Rich contextual information via HubSpot's CRM

9. Social Intents

Social Intents website

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.

Key features:

  • Branded chat widget
  • Supports unlimited agents
  • Supports proactive chats
  • Custom chatbots
  • Respond to chat messages directly from Slack and Microsoft Teams

10. Chaport

Chaport home page

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 salespeople 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).

Key features:

  • Multi-channel support
  • 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
  • Productivity tools to facilitate conversations
  • Highly customizable chat window
  • Supports auto-replies (if agents are busy or unavailable)

11. Podium

Podium website

Unlike the other live chat software options on this list, Podium — a powering service for 100,000+ businesses — focuses exclusively on local providers and 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.


Key features:

  • Unified inbox to streamline all customer conversations
  • Online reputation management allows users to collect and respond to reviews
  • Invoicing functionality
  • 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
  • It comes with autoresponders and smart responses

12. Heymarket

Heymarket live chat

Heymarket is a "business text messaging" solution that enables the SMS text channel on your website. 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.

Key features:

  • 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

Start Implementing Live Chat for Customer Support in Your Company

Now that you have learned the benefits of live chat for customer support, it's time to choose the best live chat platform for your business and implement it. It's an opportunity to develop an omnichannel marketing strategy, strengthen your brand, conquer more loyal customers, and improve customer satisfaction.

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