Having a site with many visitors is important. However it is useless if the visitor does not contact you. Without contacts you don’t sell! In this article I will explain how I managed to quadruple the contacts.
I bet you know how many visitors your business site has every day. And maybe you also know other details: country of origin, language or referer. I’m not sure instead that you know how many of these visitors actually get in touch with you, asking you to contact you, asking questions about your products and services, or maybe asking for an offer!
“If you can’t measure something, you can’t improve it.” [ William Thomson Kelvin ]
Well, if you haven’t done it yet, I suggest you to ask the question and make a little effort to answer it. If you want to improve, you must first know where you are. So count the number of daily contacts coming from the company website, taking into consideration only the classic “contact us” form that each site has.
Done? well, now ask yourself: how can I increase this number?
It is not always possible to measure exactly how manu of the customers that come in contact with us every day (in any way: phone, e-mail, etc.), have us knowed from the websites, rather than other channels: social media, word of mouth, specialized paper magazines, reference from other sites, etc.
That’s why for my statistics I decided to consider only visits coming directly and certainly from the site as a starting point, in our case from the “Contact us” form.
And this is what I did.
From the beginning of the year I counted all the daily e-mails received from the “contact us” form, thus excluding the “work with us” form which is specifically dedicated to job applications, and I inserted them in an excel sheet.
A number has emerged. And then the daily average.
The question: what can I do to improve?
Then I asked myself: what can I do simple to improve the situation? how can, with the same number of visits, entice the visitor to contact us? How can I increase the number of average daily contacts?
First of all, I’ll show you the result and then I’ll explain how I did it
The experiment began on May 17, 2019.
The Blue line represents the accumulated contacts from the beginning of the year arrived from the classic static form.
The green line is instead the trend of contacts with the new system, from May 17th to today, therefore in just over 3 weeks.
The slope of the green line says it all. The daily average has quadrupled.
The answer: Livezilla!
I remembered a product I had used years ago, but without evaluating its effectiveness in a scientific way. It’s called Livezilla and is a system of chatting and ticketing to support the customer. A sort of chat that can be installed on any site, which allows you to communicate with the visitor in a textual way, but which also allows you to implement the classic contact form to fill out (if the operator is offline or not there!).
I said to myself: ok, let’s try the simplest and cheapest thing: no chat, so no operator on the company side who has to answer, I just put the contact form.
The product is free for an operator, that’s why in the title I said at no cost.
Livezilla needs two pieces.
- The engine installs on your own domain (not necessarily the domain in which it is the site to serve), and it is very simple for those who knows a bit of internet sites. Just download the “LiveZilla Server” package from here, unzip it and upload it via FTP to your hosting. I recommend uploading it to a folder called “livezilla” in the root of the site. The setup file is then launched from the browser (for example https://www.miodomonio.it/livezilla) in which step by step you are asked what you need to configure it, including the connection parameters to a MySQL database.
There would then be a possible third party which is that of the client operator, that is to say of whom the company side answers to the questions, chat or tickets they are. The operator has 3 possible alternatives to operate
- using a web interface (I prefer this)
- using an application installed on your PC (windows, mac or linux)
- using an app on your mobile phone or tablet (Android or Apple). This last point is really fabulous because it allows you to work anywhere and at any time.
The installation steps are very well explained here
Once installed, the product must be configured. The basic configuration is really simple, and in half an hour it is done. But the real results are obtained by sweating a little, making tuning.
It starts with access to the Livezilla control panel: https://www.mysite.com/livezilla
Some information appears between which the code to be inserted in the body of your site appears to activate the service. From here click on the Operator Console and the classic form for the logn appears.
Log in with the administrator user created during installation …. and voila:
For a site seen throughout the world, it is mandatory to provide language translations. If I didn’t want to handle multiple languages I would at least have to think of doing everything in English, a language that is good or bad for everyone. But then if you think about it …. Italians are not very comfortable with foreign languages and maybe it is a general rule for the whole world. So I decided to manage multiple languages. A form with the fields in your own language certainly invites the visitor more, making him feel more at ease. Therefore all the languages that you decide to manage must be installed. In my case they were 7.
Go to the gears icon in the lower left and then the Translation Editor and then Server (visitor)
from here you can install the languages that Livezilla makes available (and they are really many). It does everything with just a few clicks.
Creating the contact form
Now you can create the form that the visitor should fill out to contact us. You do it from here. Gears icon -> Server Configuration -> Input Fields
La parte in alto mostra i campi standard disponibili:
The top part shows the standard fields available:
- first name
- company name (company)
- free text message (question)
I then created one customized with the list of countries. I made almost all the fields mandatory. I have also created a custom validation rule (I won’t talk about it for the sake of brevity)
At the end the form looks like this:
If we have configured the languages, Livezilla automatically displays the form in the correct language based on the language of the device’s browser.
The Office Field is the department you want to contact. I created Sales Department and Service.
In this way requests can be diverted to different operators and / or different emails based on whether they are commercial or technical / service requests. For my statistics I have deliberately not taken this distinction into account even if the requests were more of a “Sales” type. The experiment however wanted to test the increase of the interactions, of whatever nature they were.
To configure the Office field, go to the Group Management under the gear icon -> User Management -> Group
Here are important settings that concern:
- E-mail address to which the ticket must arrive (e.mail operator or generic business email address). I opted for the generic address.
- Messages in the various languages that will arrive to the operator but also to the visitor as confirmation of the receipt of the ticket with the content of the visitor’s request and with all the fields established
- Messages in various languages with transcripts of a possible chat
Installation on your site (base, without invitations)
The script to activate the module and the chat can be installed on the site by pasting a standard code which, as we have seen, appears on the login screen of the administration panel.
This standard code, however, makes an icon appear like this at the bottom right of the site:
These icons are not very visible. There is little desire to click on it. How to do it then? Fortunately it is possible to create “comics” in poup that invite you to interact.
The result can be seen here www.firex.it
Invitations configuration (Events)
Keep in mind the same concept as before. A “comic book” in the client’s language is more effective than one in a foreign language. So we need to find ways to make it appear in the visitor’s language.
it can be done by “gear icon” -> Events
From here, an Event must be added for each of the languages you want to manage.
Click on “Add” in the lower right corner to add:
- the condition (s) at which the event must occur
- the event that must be unleashed
At the event: “The user is Spanish speaking”
What must happen: an invitation message must appear in Spanish
How does this translate? Simple:
Same thing for all other languages. For English the condition is somewhat different: if it is not Italian, and it is not Spanish, and it is not English, and it is not German, and it is not French … then it is English:
In the advanced settings then you can decide whether to display the invitation only once per visitor, or at each visit, every few minutes
Advanced Installation on your site (with invitations)
Now that we’ve created the invitations, the last step is missing. Create the script to be included in the site to activate Livezilla with invitations (Events) in enabled language.
It is done soing this: “gear icon” -> Link Generator
And an “Graphic Button” type object is added
the preview is already displayed in the lower right corner. To finally generate the code to insert in the site, click on “Get code” at the bottom right
At this point, just paste the code into the body of the site and you’re done
Extension with API
Livezilla also has APIs (Application Programming Interface) that allow you to write your own programs to interact with the system, and to extend or automate some features. I used them to create a webservice to automatically insert the Leads (new contacts) in our Salesforce crm at the arrival of each ticket.
The documentation of the API is quite meager and incomplete, and this could discourage novice programmers, but a good user forum (knowledge base) provides some ideas.
The numbers speak for themselves: with the same number of visits, the number of contacts had quadrupled! And the result was seen from the first day of installation.
The tool is really very valid and complete, although I used it only as a ticketing system, it can do many more things than the ones I discussed in this article.
It has a wonderful integrated ticket management that I haven’t talked about. That is, it is possible to manage the various tickets directly from the operator panel, without necessarily sending e-mails to the company. You can respond to a ticker, redirect it to another operator, put them in various states), work, closed, etc.), see the question and answer related to a ticket.
You can create several users, and decide if they are chat operators or ticket managers, all tickets or just those of a department.
And then there’s the chat, a great tool that I use a lot when I’m a visitor to other sites. It was not the subject of my article. The question you will have asked yourself: what if we introduced a operator always online what would happen to interactions? if instead of the module there was an operator in chat, that would increase the average of contacts, decrease or remain constant?
If you want to know, come back in a few weeks.