Using support chat

Support chat (sometimes called Live chat) allows customer care departments to provide help to their website visitors and answer their questions in real time.

Setting up support chat

  1. Enable support chat in Settings -> Community -> Chat.
  2. Open the Permissions application and provide some roles with the Enter support permission for Chat.
  3. Place one of the following web parts on a page. We recommend to place the web part on the master page to make support chat available on all pages.
    • The Chat support request web part displays a button that the visitors can use to initiate chat with support personnel.
    • The Initiated chat web part provides a way for support personnel to start chatting with on-line visitors from the On-line users interface in the Users application.
    • The Automatically initiated chat web part automatically sends the visitor a message after a specified period of time. If the visitor replies, a notification appears in the administration interface.

You can now go on-line using the support chat toolbar. The toolbar notifies you about new messages and allows you to switch between active conversations.

Using support chat with SSL

If you’re using SSL on your websites, make sure you configure WCF for SSL.

Available support chat web parts

Chat support request

Displays a control that visitors click to start chatting with a support person. In this case, the site visitor initiates the chat and the support person receives a notification in the user interface.

You can set up forwarding support requests to email in Settings -> Community -> Chat -> Support chat. If you don’t enter any email address into the Send support messages to this email address setting and no support person is online, support chat is not available for site visitors.

Initiated chat

When you place this web part on a page, you can start chat with visitors who are on the page. Please note that you need to enable the on-line users feature first.

You can chat only with registered users who are logged on. To initiate chat with a user, navigate to Users -> On-line users and click Initiate chat.

Automatically initiated chat

This web part automatically displays a predefined message to visitors who spend a specified amount of time on a page. When the message appears, visitors have two options:

  • Reply – opens the support chat window. The visitor can now reply to the message, which in turn lights up a notification for support personnel in the administration interface.
  • Close – closes the message without replying. This prevents the message from appearing again for one hour.

The message doesn’t appear if no support person is on-line.

Going on-line

To go on-line in support chat, you must have the Enter support permission for Chat. When you have the Enter support permission, you access support chat from the system header at the top.

  1. Click the Support chat icon in the top right corner of the screen.
  2. Click Go on-line.

You are on-line in support chat. When a visitor sends their first message, the support chat icon shows a notification. Click the support chat icon to view active support chat requests.

You can use canned responses to quickly insert commonly used text into your messages.