A Walk Through Tour of Live Assist for Dynamics 365

CafeX Communications has launched a public preview of Live Assist for Microsoft Dynamics 365, a personalised customer assistance solution for sales and service teams.

Live Assist for Dynamics 365 is the result of a joint development between Microsoft and CafeX to bring this technology to Azure, integrate it with Dynamics 365 sales and service apps, and support deployment with Office 365 to support a single sign on.

For call agents, Live Assist is accessible from the main Dynamics 365 web interface as well as the Unified Service Desk (USD).  

This enables sales and service agents to: 

  • Engage in text conversations with website visitors and mobile app users
  • Gain screen visibility, initiate co-browse sessions and share documents
  • Have a unified view of web chat and other interactions in Dynamics 365 and USD
  • Provide customers with immediate and personalized support within a company’s website and mobile apps.

From within Dynamics 365, users can answer questions, share information across web chat and help visitors navigate sites and apps to quickly resolve issues and maximise online conversion rates.

The recent launch of customer self-service web portals for Dynamics 365 is one example of how Microsoft technology is helping organisations deliver outstanding service across multiple channels. In addition to corporate websites, Live Assist works with these integrated portals to enhance the customer experience.

Live Assist by CafeX requires an additional add-on subscription for Dynamics 365 Enterprise Edition and is licensed per named chat agent. Please get in touch if you want to receive a quotation.

In this post we will take a high level look at Live Assist, and its integration with Dynamics 365.

From the Live Assist portal the first step will be to create a campaign.

This can be open ended or this can be more targeted by defining locations, search terms, referral sources and other criteria. If required, a campaign can also have an expiry date.

In many instances an open-ended campaign would be used, as shown below, but more for a more personalised chat experience individually targeted campaigns can be configured:

Within a campaign, the next step is to configure chat button and other engagement settings.

The Engagement Studio will be used to define states for displaying online chat availability, this will also include busy and unavailable statuses.

These settings include the branded colour and positioning of the chat button.

Several chat button styles are available and bespoke designs can also be uploaded.

The design of the pop-up chat box is controlled within the Engagement Window. 

As well as further colour settings, this will control the default image that appears in the chat window header. This could be an agent picture or a company logo / icon. 

A further chat window option is a pre-chat survey. These can be used to collect additional data from web visitors before the chat is started, this could include their name and email address. If appropriate these questions can be set as mandatory. 

Question types include radio buttons, drop down lists, check boxes as well as free format fields. 

A post-chat survey can also be configured, for example to deliver a transcript of the conversation and there is a separate survey option to collect feedback about the performance of the agent.

A further setting can be made to determine which location the Click to Chat button will be displayed.

By default, this would be shown on every web page where the click to chat code is applied but this can be more tightly defined using keywords and URLs with 'Contains' and 'Exact Match' rules that include to 'Exclude' criteria.

More advanced controls can be applied to personalise this even further. 

For example, these might prompt the chat button to appear if a defined page flow is abandoned, or if a visitor moves back a stage and if a defined amount of time has been spent on the website or a specific location. Furture options exist for ecommerce sites including cart value and products selection rules.

By using a combination of targeting and/or behaviour controls, it enables chat campaigns can be more personalised through prompts and surveys are contextual to individual online experiences.

Once these options are defined, grab the relevant code snippet(s) and add to the relevant portal, domain or web pages.

Live Assist can also be configured with external data sources. 

This can include Google Analytics to enhance targeting that could include age, geo location and gender. Further options are available to configure external ecommerce information and define attributes that include cart updates. 

Once the Live Assist for Dynamics 365 solution is enabled from the Administration Center this is managed within the settings area. 

For named users, this will add a vertical Cafe X / Live Assist component in the Dynamics 365 UI that alerts individuals when when visitors want to initiate chat sessions. Live Assist can also be shown in the Unified Service Desk for Dynamics 365, or in a separate browser window.

In this example, the panel is expanded to manage a chat session within Dynamics 365:

Chat sessions can be expanded in a new window that will show more detail including the visitor navigation history and answers to pre-survey questions:

During the chat it may be helpful to see a web visitor's screen in order to resolve issues or answer questions. To do this initiate a co-browse session:

This can be used to provide direction by pointing to on-screen areas that will help individuals find information using a highlighted pen...

...or using pulse to demonstrate before clicking the appropriate item to help visitors get to where they want:

A co-browse session can also be used to share file attachments and guide individuals by directly making clicks.

Back to the chat window, there are a series of useful controls that appear at the foot of this panel including several items that are integrated with Dynamics 365:

Canned Messages

Quickly provide a response to frequently asked questions by selecting one of the predefined canned messages.

Knowledge Base

Bring up the Dynamics 365 knowledge base search in a single click to quickly find and share answers.

Open Chat Activity Record

A Dynamics 365 chat record will automatically be created when a new chat session is started. Click this icon to instantly bring up the record to add more information and link it to an existing contact:

When the chat session has been closed the record will display the accompanying chat transcript:

By linking chat records to Dynamics 365 contacts, details of these sessions will be listed in the Chat Activities page from each contact record:

Transfer Chat

Forward the online chat to another Dynamics 365 / Live Assist user to continue the conversation.

Create Case

Click this icon to open a new Dynamics 365 case record directly from the web chat and the link the case to an existing customer, if appropriate:

Private Chat

Toggle private chat to remove any comments from the recorded chat transcript

For use with Dynamics 365 integrated web portals, Live Assist can be configured so that agents know who they are talking to. Jesper Osgaard has shared information about this process on his blog

Live Assist is another great addition to the service capabilities of Microsoft Dynamics 365, to read more detail and access the Live Assist knowledge base visit: https://liveassistfor365.com. A free 30 day trial can be registered from here, or from Dynamics 365 AppSource.

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