The Live Chat Software UK market is expanding rapidly in the UK today. There are an ever increasing number of live chat software providers, from new start-ups to established software providers, all chasing a slice of this new and expanding market.

But what is live chat software and why should SMEs be interested in it? Is it just another of those fads dreamed up by clever software companies and business gurus to extract money from large companies with deep pockets? Or is it something that SMEs should be taking seriously?

Well the big boys certainly think it is something to be taken seriously. Go onto many major company’s website these days such as Vodafone UK and after not very long that little box pops up or appears at the side of the screen asking “Want to Chat?” or “Can I help you today?”

Research has shown that 82% of Internet users feel that they have had a great on-line experience if they can have their issue resolved or find what they are looking for quickly. That’s why the big boys are investing in this software and applying in their contact centres.

But what about SMEs. Are we being left out of the offering from the providers in the live chat software UK market? Well of course we are.

We don’t have the money to buy in expensive software. Nor do we have a contact centre with 50 or 100 agents available 24 hours a day just waiting to take calls and provide information to website browsers. Let alone the IT expertise to get it all installed and up and working.

So is there a better way? As an SME what do you usually do when you really need something but either do not know how to do it, or simply don’t have the time to do it yourself? You outsource it of course.

But that’s expensive. So you only do that with things you really, really need (unless it’s cheap as chips of course!).

Well as SME owners ourselves, we made a decision that wanted to test a live chat service on our own website, to see if it was worth investing in the software and people to staff it.

So we looked around for an outsourced provider to use for a test first. But there wasn’t anyone out there in the UK doing it at all. In fact there were very few doing it with real people, not just an automated system, anywhere in the world.

So we decided there and then to start just such a service provider and be its first clients ourselves.

We have been amazed at its success for us, delivering 15 – 20 leads every month in just one of our offices and answering questions on a very wide variety of topics posed by our website.

Live Chat Software UK

This series of posts on my blog looks at how we established a new concept for SME service provision in the Live Chat Software UK market, a market which is expanding rapidly in the UK today. There are an ever increasing number of live chat software providers, from new start-ups to established software providers, all chasing a slice of this new and expanding market.

But what is live chat software and why should SMEs be interested in it? Is it just another of those fads dreamed up by clever software companies and business gurus to extract money from large companies with deep pockets? Or is it something that SMEs should be taking seriously?

In starting of this post we looked at why we set up Rapid Live Chat, because we wanted to test live chat as a possible opportunity for our company. But when we looked around the Live Chat Software UK market, we couldn’t find an outsourced provider to use for a test first.

There wasn’t anyone out there in the UK doing it at all. In fact there was only one other company doing it with real people rather than just an automated system anywhere in the world.

So we decided there and then to start just such a service provider and be its first clients ourselves.

It’s called Rapid Live Chat and you can find out more at FREE LIVE CHAT SOFTWARE where you will experience it for yourself.

Of course we priced it to be suitable for SMEs like ourselves, who don’t have endless budgets to pay for things. We too live in the real world of daily cash flow to pay the bills.

As an SME as well as an outsourcer, we understand that we have be cheap as chips to get SMEs like us to even consider live chat software, at least at the entry level.

But the trouble with cheap as chips products is how can you be sure it is a high quality and reliable provider that won’t let you down and damage your reputation? At that price isn’t it bound to be a bunch of cowboys with a slick front end and sales team?

Fair comment and just what I would be thinking. So we had to develop something that would not only be reliable and trustworthy, but be designed to show that from the ground up.

But it also had to be flexible and able to respond to a wide range of client types and needs, without needing large amounts of expensive redevelopment every time a new need arises.

Our solution tuned out to be very simple. We bought the best software we could find and then made the whole thing totally customer responsive.

By keeping things simple, we were able to ensure that whatever questions our clients need answering for their website visitors, our systems can not only handle that totally reliably, but can also adapt and develop as our clients’ website visitors change their questions and needs.

In my next post We will look at how we arrived at that solution and how we operate it today