How to Know When to Use Chatbots vs. Live Chat

By Published On: April 28th, 2020Categories: chatbots, live chat

Guest post by Ashley Lipman, content marketing specialist. 

There are many things that go into a successful business. You need a quality product or service, good marketing, and intelligent team of employees and a strong brand. However, one of the most underrated parts of most successful businesses is customer service.

There is no doubt how important customer service can be to an organization. How you treat customers (or potential customers) can have a direct impact on how loyal they are to your brand. If you treat them badly, there is a good chance they will take their business elsewhere, and also tell their friends how they were treated.

All types of customer service are important, but this is especially true when it comes to answering customer questions and concerns. Two of the most popular methods of helping customer concerns are live chat and live answering service. But which is the better option for your company to use?

With that in mind, this article is going to look at how to know when to use chatbots vs. live chat.


Live Chat

A live chat is when a customer can speak directly with a customer service rep in real-time within a chat box. It allows for instant responses instead of waiting on the phone or waiting to hear back from an email. Many companies will use a piece of software to manage these chats and ensure everyone gets the help they need. If you want to learn more about live chat software, check this blog post by AccuWeb Hosting.

Onlim also offers a Live Chat tool, which you can test 14 days for free here. 

Now that you know a bit about live chat and why it’s used, how does it stack up against chatbots? Where live chat thrives is that it is much better at dealing with complex situations or questions. It also offers human touch. Customers often feel at ease when they are speaking with a real person who can understand and relate to their issue.

However, there are also some weaknesses and drawbacks to choosing live chat.

One is that it is not always scalable. As you grow and get more customers, you will need more and more customer service reps to keep up. Also, if the questions and concerns you receive are all very simple and repetitive, having people dedicated to answering them can be a waste of their time. Also, many customer service reps can only handle a few live chats at once, limiting how effective they can be at times.


A chatbot is a type of AI that is able to simulate conversations with humans. They can offer a human-like customer service experience and are capable of handling many simple questions and inquiries without the need for human intervention. 

Download our free e-book to learn everything you need to know about chatbots for your business.



A chatbot is often the right choice if most of your questions are quite simple and basic. These programs are also incredibly scalable, so no matter how many inquiries you get, the program will be able to handle it. Also, they are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Chatbots don’t need breaks or sleep, so they can quickly deal with customer concerns, no matter when they come in.

However, there are some drawbacks. For example, if the questions your company gets are complex and require detailed responses, some chatbots will fail to be as articulate as required. They may not be able to offer satisfactory responses in these cases, so all highly-technical or detailed questions should be answered by humans. Some chatbots also lack the authentic feel of talking with a person, but they are improving.

The way you ultimately decide which is best for you is by looking at the data and numbers. If you test both for a set period of time, looking at the results can be beneficial. You should look at response times, customer satisfaction, the accuracy of the assistance and the costs associated with each.

You could even opt to combine a chatbot with live chat. Having customer service reps working the live chat for a few hours a day, followed by a chatbot handling the rest can be a good way to go about doing things. The choice is yours! In conclusion, hopefully, this article has shown you all you need to know about the live chat vs. chatbot debate.

Author bio:

Ashley Lipman is an award-winning writer at Study clerk who discovered her passion for providing knowledge to readers worldwide on topics closest to her heart – all things digital. Since her first high school award in Creative Writing, she continues to deliver awesome content through various niches touching the digital sphere.


How to Know When to Use Chatbots vs. Live Chat
How to Know When to Use Chatbots vs. Live Chat