December 29, 2006 in Feedback
I think it would be a good idea for IPS to implement a live chat system for support. It could also be used for pre-purchase questions. It would be like the telephone but without the cost for people who live outside the US. Also the Support Team could handle 2 - 3 Chats at once, unlike the telephone.Maybe it could even be built as a feature in Nexus when it is more developed, but thats another thing.
There was a chat system (one that is configured to work with IP.Board) here, but it has seemed to of been removed.I read that the system was being mis-used/abused.
:lol: misused/abused is an understatementWe did have live chat for a while but it was just totally not worth it for anyone. I mean, I kid you not, people would come into chat several times a day. Sometimes we swear they were just making things up so they could chat to the staff.
"I have a personal problem..." Yes, the joy of live chat. I always say, if it's really important, they'll phone.
I honestly think that the ticket system is a good method as it is. The phone really isn't as effective for technical issues because you can't really stay on the phone with them while you're fixing the issue, especially if it's complex. If you do you end up listing to each other breath, or one will make another comment which takes away from the focus of the problem anyway. Eventually you end up logging a ticket anyway, so you're better off starting a ticket in the first place (saves time). I've seen this with several tech companies, my host included. Those that want to stay on the phone just want to know it's being taken care of, which I can't blame them for that... I've been there myself! But as far as efficiency goes.. support tickets are the way to go.As far as sales and billing, the phone can be very effective. A big factor in selling the product can come from just the tone in the support reps voice, etc... I know when I've bought something attitude and clear communication was a big thing for me. I like to compare GoDaddy and 1&1 (domains). GoDaddy is completely awesome, and 1&1... well.. they aren't as good...A chat is more in the middle... It's like a support ticket, but it's live like a phone. With a technical issue, as I've said, you have to be focused on what you're doing to solve the problem as quickly and efficiently as possible to the customers satisfaction. With sales you really have to be focusing on the customer making sure they are happy with what they're getting... The advantage of a chat that was mentioned is that you can have more than one chat open at a time.... But with that attention is split... And when I think about that I think about my little brother trying to watch tv and do his homework at the same time while eating. I don't think he's doing his homework very well, nor is he getting the most out of the show he's watching. If anything the only thing he could be benefiting the most from is eating. So.. my point is the more focus you have on a single thing the more efficient you are at doing it, and the faster you're able to do it. The more efficient you are at helping the customer you are the more happy they are. As soon as you're done helping them you're able to more on to the next customer.And with previous experience I've found that business people would rather call you than bother with a chat. When I worked at an insurance company I had to setup a chat... 99% of the people we got called and very very few used the chat. Those that used the chat never turned into actual leads, whereas those that called half of them at least turned into actual business.
My new host has live chat support... it's very, very nifty -- if it weren't for that I would have had to wait over 2 days for something so simple. I'm all for live support, but I do understand the draw backs :(
I know it was an issue when I worked for IPS. I always thought there were just too many avenues for support (hear me out).At the time, we offered support via: Tickets, Forums, Phone, and LiveChat. As Charles stated, some customers lived in LiveChat for the sake of using it as was intended - but many other folks just wouldn't stop. "Hey Watty, how's it going today? Just wanted to stop by and see how things are going". BLAH!So while I'm providing support via LC, now my phone is ringing for support. I can't answer the phone and provide support while at the same time doing LC - so a ticket is/was generated by the answering service who really has no clue about the verbiage used by IPB users/support folks... and OOPS, they forgot to include the customers email address - or they typed the contact phone number wrong, or this, or that, etc.And all the while doing LC and phone support, questions for support are piling up in the forums as well as tickets in the client area.I feel that the way IPS has it now for OFFICIAL support is perfect and highly manageable: Phone support and/or ticket support. It's more than a lot of companies offer. And some (not all) tell you up front that it can take up to 10 business days to reply to a support query. IPS, I believe, offers ticket support generally within 24 hours. GENERALLY.They've learned from the past and continue to learn for the future. :thumbsup:
We would need a whole seperate support team just to cover the amount of people (and how times) come into the chat daily.We had it in the past, it did not work out well.
:lol: misused/abused is an understatement
We did have live chat for a while but it was just totally not worth it for anyone. I mean, I kid you not, people would come into chat several times a day. Sometimes we swear they were just making things up so they could chat to the staff.
It really did :)
If people abuse it, can't you just stop them from using the Live Chat Support?
Makes sense as to why you got rid of it. :D To be honest I'm happy with the fast ticket responses at the moment, I've never had a ticket waiting longer than 24 hours.
speaking of live chat, are there any mods/hacks/components/modules for IPB that integrate IRC chat into the board?
Yes there is, you can purchase it through your Admin CP.
they key word in my post was IRC.
Due to the overwhelming security issues posed by IRC clients, ParaChat ceased to develop IRC-compatible software in 1999.
I know your were discussing IRC. But seen as I didn't know any IRC applications I thought Chat would be good enough.
I've tried those and it was a total disaster. members hated it, it's impossible to set up an eggy with useful services or a BNC. besides, the presence of a web site channel in an IRC network adds some respectability to the site. the problem is actually finding an integrated chat solution...the best web IRC chat I've ever seen is deviantArt's dAmn. it's completely mind-blowing. it's hard to even believe it's an AJAX-powered IRC chat.
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