Shoppers need help

A study by Econsultancy from 2013 of 5,700+ online consumers revealed that 83% of online shoppers need support to complete a purchase. 

They also found that 31% of shoppers expect an immediate response, and 40% expect a response within 5 min. To be more precise:

Yet, 21% of companies fail to respond to Live Chat requests (source)


What’s the impact of having a Live Chat?



Shoppers who chat are much more like to convert

This is according to Intercom (source).


And the more the customer replies, the more likely they are to convert:


Some other stats and insights:




Some nuance

From one of the members of my Ecom Convert group:

Live chat does not work the same way across all niches, industries, and product lines.

So, if your product offering is simple, low priced, and your target market are spontaneous buyers, then live chat is a waste of resources.

The more complex your product offering and the longer the buying process and related decision-making is for your target market buyer, the more you need to have a live chat feature on your site.

Live chat is a resource-involved feature that becomes a must for high-end and complex product offerings, and not just a conversion piece. recommends…

They recommend to use a scroll map to figure out where visitors usually pause on the page. That is likely when they need additional support. Trigger (open) your live chat popup at that point. (source

Of course, if the user closes it, you should not insist by opening it again (ever). That would only annoy them. Let them open it if they want to message you. 


NN Group’s thoughts on live chats



Availability hours

I would add that your chat availability hours should match your audience’s behavior. So if they are active on your site and asking questions mostly between let’s say 7AM and 10PM Eastern, then match your ‘open hours’ to that.


Give a personal feel to your chat:

  • A real person
  • Show a photo of the agent



Shopify apps

Here’s the list of Live Chat Shopify appsYou can quickly see which ones are free, and their ratings. I’d recommend just going through the list and finding one that suits your needs.



If you add a live chat to your store, you should also consider adding a chatbot to it to provide instantaneous responses, offer discounts, and capture emails. See best practice #40.