When it comes to self-hosted chat, the most recognisable benefit is ownership. If you’re hosting a solution on your own company server, you can keep all your data in-house. This degree of privacy leads to obvious upshots for regulated companies handling sensitive information.
But there are other, quieter benefits of self-hosted chat that slip under the radar. While third-party independence and full security control will always be the headline benefits of self-hosted chat, it also has less obvious advantages to offer.
Here are five of them.
1. A branded chat URL
When visitors launch a chat window from your website, they see a URL in the browser title bar. With a hosted service, the URL automatically shows the live chat provider.
This means two things. First, you don’t have control of your chat domain name. Second, you inadvertently advertise another brand in your URL.
URL customisation isn’t a problem with an on-premise solution. By hosting chat on your own server, you can create your own branded chat URL – ‘livechat.yourcompanyname.com’, for example. In doing so, you create a more streamlined chat experience, with increased user confidence.
2. Your own SSL certificate
An SSL certificate authenticates the identity of a website. It contains key organisational details, serving as an “e-passport” that establishes a company’s credentials when doing business online.
With an installable live chat solution, you’ll get your own SSL certificate. This means that the certificate registered to your chat URL will show your own company details. (Not those of the live chat provider.)
Not only does this boost trust for any visitors who view your certificate, it’s also powerful reassurance for customers using chat on your secure web pages.
3. Full customisation control
When hosting chat yourself, you have full customisation control. So, the chat window themes, style sheets and data graphics that come with your solution can take any appearance you prefer.
Plus, increased customisation options also mean more opportunities to integrate. An on-premise deployment offers much more scope to align chat with your existing tech ecosystem and processes.
4. Instant database access
Your data is immediately accessible with an installable chat solution. Rather than using a public cloud service, you’re storing data in your own secure MS SQL database. You’ve got full access, full rights.
All that data on chat sessions, usage and web analytics is self-contained. It can be extracted at any time, used to create custom reports, linked to your systems, or hooked to existing corporate database servers.
And of course, you set the security policies and access permissions. It’s simple: you’re the data owner, and you can do things that wouldn’t be possible with a hosted service.
5. Reduced bandwidth
Using cloud resources means using more bandwidth. Due to these bandwidth constraints, access to your public cloud provider can be problematic – particularly if you’re operating an international company with multiple remote sites.
By installing your chat solution, you avoid these issues. Accessibility using private WAN connections to private data centres can be more reliable and consistent. (Compared to using public cloud offerings and relying on the internet as your primary access method.)
When your chat servers are self-hosted, your only limits are your internal network’s infrastructure.
Explore the benefits of self-hosted chat
None of this is to downplay the convenience and security of cloud-based chat. For highly regulated verticals, however, an on-premise option is often the easiest route to compliance.
Plus, these oft-forgotten points highlight that on-premise chat has advantages far beyond regulatory compliance. Keen to learn more? The best way to explore the benefits of self-hosted chat is to explore it for yourself.
Get in touch today to request your own on-premises trial of WhosOn.