We would like to offer our customer the choice between starting a chat and leaving a message.
One reason is we'd like the customer to decide on the preferred contact method, but our main reason is that we often have a high load on the live chat, with many customers waiting to be served, which is not a good customer experience.
Instead let's give the customers the option to do something else by showing them they can leave a message if they want and go about their day.
ATM, when live chat is enabled, we have no option in the web widget to hint to the user he can submit a request by contact form as well.
Customer is 'blocked' by the chat instead (unless he finds a link to our form page).
It's crazy a customer would have to return to our website at an indeterminate point in the future to get support because the chat has a queue, and there's no (immediately obvious) contact alternatives.
Right now we feel Chat is doing both good and harm when we have high loads.
Conceptually something like this, although any way to redirect/show a form/link to form option in the widget would do it.
Now, how would the customer know there's a waiting queue for the chat? Well, for our use case, we think it would make sense to present the options as above, and if the customer chooses the live chat, he should get the queue position (currently possible in Zendesk Chat), and also be able to 'return' to the contact form option.
If anyone have other suggestions I'd be glad to hear them (other than 'hire more staff' :P ). We feel it's weird we cannot offer the customer the choice, though, and downright bad in our case.
Automatically disabling the chat on set load thresholds would be good if it was possible, which I don't know about. Even if it were though, we have customers who really want to get a direct contact with us, so just toggling of the live chat is not the best solution we'd like.