In the pursuit of more buyers, customer service is the key element.
The way you interact with the customers will furthermore determine the customers’ journey. That’s why businesses put so much effort into finding the best solution for communicating with customers.
In this pursuit, two options often arise as possible solutions – Facebook Messanger and live chats. They both have their advantages and disadvantages so how can you make a decision? Not to mention that you have to account for your business’s needs. In the following lines, we will revise these communication channels and based on that information you can decide which one would be the best solution for your business.
Facebook Messenger vs. Live Chat
First of all, let’s get to know the two chat options. Only after we have the information about both rivals can we get into details about their use in business.
Facebook Messenger is wildly popular among people so businesses saw an opportunity in that and started to use it for interaction with customers. Over 1.3 billion people use Messenger and that audience plays a big role in businesses’ decision to use it for communication purposes.
When Facebook enabled messaging for business pages the show has begun. Businesses can now decide whether they want to answer the customers’ questions on Facebook publicly or via Messenger. Also, the customers who found the page on Facebook can interact with the business through private messages.
As the popularity of business communication through Facebook Messenger continually grew, Facebook introduced Messenger integration with websites that enables companies to provide even better customer service. This feature allows website visitors to sign up to connect with your business in Messenger.
Live chat powers real-time conversation. It usually appears as a pop-up window on a business’ website and customers can type in a question whenever they want. The chat agent on the other side of the line then provides an instant response.
With time, live chat has proved to be a profitable addition to businesses’ customer service. A case study with Virgin Airlines showed that companies that use live chat have a 3.5 times higher conversion rate than with people who had emailed the company. Moreover, the research also found that companies with live chats had a 15% higher average order value compared to those who didn’t use the chat.
Marie Fincher, a customer service expert at Supreme Dissertations, says: “The factors that make live chats helpful in customer service is eliminating uncertainty, easy to reach support and humanized version of customer support. What you get with live chat is a digital sales agent.”
Now, let’s revise what Facebook Messenger and live chat bring to the table and how they perform in different essential categories.
1. Instant Communication
Both communication channels offer instant communication with one difference. In live chats, you have to present during the chat. On the other hand, you can send a message to a customer in Messenger and then back to them later. This option is both an advantage and a disadvantage. While you’ll be able to come back to the conversation whenever you want, customers can wait for the response much longer as you don’t have to answer them right away.
Being a traditional method of customer service, people could feel more comfortable with communicating with a business through live chat. Even those who don’t have social media can contact you. Not to mention that the live chat option is on your website so they don’t have to leave the page to get help. Facebook is a suitable method for businesses that have strong social media marketing. They will have another approach to customers through Messenger.
Now, here’s a feature that both chat methods have in common. You can add an automated response option to Messenger as well as live chat. Facebook provides you with this option with its Page messaging tool and you can find a live chat software provider that includes automated responses. The responses can be customized with the help of TrustMyPaper writers and edited with Grammarly so that they are error-free and ready for consistent use.
When it comes to the functionality of these two chat options, Facebook Messenger has an upper hand. There is a useful feature that a live chat doesn’t have and Facebook offers and that is Facebook Messenger Ads. They can be used in a form of sponsored messages in people’s inbox, Messenger Stories Ads that appear between Stories, Messenger ads that appear between conversations in the inbox. This functionality adds another promotional opportunity that live chats don’t offer.
Facebook’s downside is that they can drop the website app whenever they find it not to be profitable. The proof of that is that Facebook discontinued its mobile app development platform in just three years because it wasn’t as profitable as they expected. This leaves some businesses with a lack of trust in this social media company. With live chats, you don’t have to worry about that. They exist for a decade at least and they have no plan to disappear any time soon.
6. Privacy & Security
All the talk about exploiting personal information that people share on the internet leaves many people concerned about their privacy. Using Messenger for communication with customers means that Facebook will be in possession of all the information they share on that platform. There are no worries about this with live chats. Considering that you purchase the live chat software the contacts that reach out to you via that chat are all yours.
And the winner is…
…the one that consists of features that are more suitable for your business. You have all the basic information that can help you decide on the communication channel that will cater to the needs of your customers.
Ultimately, it all depends on your target audience and your business’s goals. You now know what Messenger and live chats have to offer so you and your team can make a decision. What’s it going to be?
Nicole Garrison is a content strategist, writer, and contributor at a number of platforms for marketing specialists. Moreover, she runs her own blog LiveInspiredMagazine. She is a dedicated and experienced author who pays particular attention to quality research.