In a fully online world, mediocre user experiences no longer cut it.
Let’s say you are hosting a virtual event or Q&A. Or you have a group of dedicated users of your product or service. You want to wow your audience with a great interactive experience because let’s face it – zoom and online fatigue are real.
As great as your event or your product is, if the associated group chat is clunky, it reflects badly on your brand.
Robust online chat can help you connect to your audience, ask and answer questions, and provide real-time feedback and value. But not all online chat software services are built equally. And there is a lot out there to research.
To help you understand what to look for when it comes to a chat software service, we put together a list of seven must-haves when it comes to online chat.
Everything you offer online needs to reflect your brand – up to and including your chat software! A customizable chat feature that allows you to stick to your brand guidelines is a must. It allows you to elevate your brand, build brand awareness or monetize and highlight a sponsor brand. Look for vendors who offer many different themes, color settings, and fonts. Including the functionality to company logos or other avatars to identify key contributors easily.
2. Ease of Use
The last thing you want is your attendees or users distracted by chat pop-ups that take them outside of your event or onto a new browser. We all live online and probably have 15 other browser windows open, and navigating back to where you were is an irritant that takes your audience out of the moment. Your chat needs to be contained and easy to navigate.
If you are going to invest in group chat, you need something that will grow with you. Whether your event is a small gathering of bird enthusiasts or a huge gaming community of thousands of users, you need a chat feature that can handle the volume. And for different topics and threads, private and public breakout rooms of any size are a must.
4. Ability to Pin Messages
If you have ever seen a popular Instagram Live, you know how quickly chats can disappear when thousands of people are chiming in at once. During your event or in your user groups, you need the ability to pin messages to the top, whether it’s an announcement or a great question from an audience member. In a virtual event, for example, you could pin a message like “Starting soon at 10 am EST, join us for Gaming Marketing Strategies on the Main Stage.”
5. Comprehensive Admin Capabilities and Security
Managing your online chat on the fly is important because trolls can strike at any time to disrupt your event or space. We have all seen this happen! Look for a chat product that has a feature that enables your team to manage messages, moderate comments, and ban users. For added security look for a product that allows you to download transcripts of messages in case you need to review them after the fact or find bad actors.
6. Images and Emojis
Memes and emojis are a big part of the way everyone communicates. Even your Great Aunt Nancy knows how to send a heart and seven smiley faces. You need a chat platform where your audience can communicate how they want – and that includes images, emojis, reaction buttons within chats, and avatars and logos to attach to a profile and create unique identities.
As many chat platforms as there are out there, there are even more options when it comes to building websites or events. Whatever you are working with, you need online chat software that integrates easily and is a breeze to install and set up whether integrated into your website or as a standalone product.
While these features may seem basic, they are important features that lead to excellent user experiences. I hope this blog was helpful to you in your search to find online chat service software.
If you have any questions about Digital Joy Chat and how we compare, please message us anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org.