Website chat is viewed by many dealers to be an alternative method of communication, as it should be. There are some who view it as a lead generation tool and they can look at numbers to show that they're getting more leads, but to truly test their results that must take a closer look.
Properly positioned and managed chat on dealer websites can definitely be great for getting more leads. However, there are passive services out there, the ones that are pretty much contact forms with different branding, that are not generating more leads. They're simply capturing the leads from people who would have used a different method of contact whether there was chat on the website or not.
As we detailed on a post we titled, "A Great Automotive Chat Solution Will Increase Leads", one of the primary goals of website chat should be to give more of your website visitors a reason to make contact with you and become a lead as a result.
Reports from any chat provider will show you how many leads they're able to capture. You then have to compare that to the other lead-generating tools on your website. Are you getting more leads or are you simply replacing leads from other sources with chat leads? If your total number of leads is not going up, as is the case so often when we're talking to potential customers, then your chat is not positioned properly.
Analyze all of your reports together. Don't simply take what your chat provider shows in their report and assume that things are going well. What you may find is that your chat leads are present but that your other lead sources from your website went down once you installed chat. The goal is to get more, not replace pre-existing ones.