Shopify Chat Apps
If you’re a Shopify merchant, you know that there are many great apps out there to help you run your business. But with so many options, it can be hard to know which ones are worth your time and money. In this post, we’ll take a look at some of the best chat apps for Shopify merchants. We’ll discuss what each app does and how it can help you streamline your operations. So if you’re looking for some new tools to help you boost your business, read on. You’re sure to find something useful here.
Shopping by chat is booming. People are getting comfortable with effortlessly talking to their devices, and businesses are leveraging this trend to provide better customer service. Shopify, one of the market leaders in ecommerce platforms, has taken this possibility a step further by adding Facebook Messenger integration to its platform. This allows any Shopify store to add a fully functional Facebook chat app for customers right on their shop’s front page.
The basic premise of a chat app is that it allows two-way communication between third-party companies and consumers via a website’s instant messaging service. If you’ve heard about them or seen one before, then you know how popular they are already; if not, then let us go into further detail as to why everyone relies on Shopify Chat Apps.
Best Shopify Chat Apps:
After focusing on just Shopify Payments for a while, I decided to dive into the world of chat apps. Chat apps allow your customers to contact you directly from your store.
The most prominent players in this space are Conversio, Olark, and Kayako.
Let’s discuss them briefly:
Conversio only offers the widget which requires the customer to have already messaged your store or be logged in to see it. When they reply, their message is auto-forwarded to an email address (you need to set that up separately). Conversio then sends you an email every time someone replies which can get annoying fast. There’s no way of sending automated messages back (yet) either, even though there’s integration with MailChimp. You can’t prevent customers from sending you emails outside of Conversio either, so it’s not a one-stop shop.
Olark is more advanced than Conversio but still lacks some key features that I wanted, like suppression list and welcome message customization. With Olark, customers cannot send messages to your store without messaging you or being logged in. That means there’s no way for them to contact you if they haven’t heard of you or already bought something (I think it makes sense to include the option to contact stores that don’t allow chat on their site). It’s free up to 25 chats per day which aren’t enough for my needs (especially since the volume I get is really low), but paying $15/mo for unlimited chats is definitely within my budget, so I decided to give it a try.
Kayako is what Conversio should have been — chat-based only, no emails. It also has some nice features like a suppression list, autoresponders, and most importantly, an option for website visitors to send you messages even if they haven’t messaged you before. The feature that makes Shopify integration possible is creating a message queue that stores previous conversations with your customers in case you’re offline or out of the office when they reply. You can then easily view your conversation history with that customer by clicking on their name wherever it appears next to an automatically generated email address (this is done using Olark’s API). It doesn’t have a welcome message option, though.
Kayako doesn’t have a free plan, so I initially wanted to go with Olark, but for some reason, Shopify’s official app store won’t let me install it unless I pay the monthly fee. After browsing through Shopify’s app store forums, I realized that there were other ways of installing apps, like uploading an HTML file as a Liquid snippet. Since both Conversio and Olark use open-source code, which you can easily access on GitHub, I tried my luck by writing a one-line Liquid snippet that would download the latest containing all necessary files from their repository and serve them as if they were hosted locally on my server. It worked.
Chat apps are a great new way for customers to connect with you and find the information they need. They can also help you keep up with customer service requests and provide more personalized interactions on social media. If this sounds like something that would be useful for your business, we recommend checking out Shopify’s chat app offerings today.