I have a success story that I want to share. I use a service called MeeboMe that allows prospective clients to chat (instant message) with me from my website. I have found this works well— people who might not have taken the time to e-mail me seem to prefer this medium. I like it too. Why? Quick resolutions. They tell me their needs, I ask for whatever information they left out, they shoot back answers, and I tell them if I can help them or not. With instant messaging, there is no waiting around for replies. Every time customers have to wait for a reply, the chance that they will lose interest in the effort increases. MeeboMe can be inserted, free of charge, into any website with just a few lines of code and is rendered as chat box widget. As long as you are online, messages are routed to your Meebo instant-messaging account. Meebo itself is a cool service because it allows you to instant message from multiple accounts/providers from a single web-based interface. From any computer you can log into all your accounts and see your contacts in a single buddy list.

The catch of course is that you need to be at your computer and able to respond quickly to questions, but since my job is to sit at the computer, that is hardly a problem. The other night (late) three prospective customers messaged me all within the same hour! I don’t think they would have bothered to contact me if the chat box wasn’t right there on the front page of my website.


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