This is an example early draft product spec/notes, written as part of this blog post.


  • Conversion sucks. 18% but should be able to do 30% (need source).
  • What else have we tried here, and why is this worth trying? Need to look up our past support case summary and survey results.


  • Prove live chat is worth it. Be ok with scrapping if the results stink.
  • Ideally have an answer by start of Dec so we can ask for support resources in Q1.

Chat vendor?

  • Look at the top few and pick one: Olark, SnapEngage, etc.
  • What does the UX look like and how much customization is needed and possible?
  • We need cust ops to manage setting their hours, and agents, without a code push!
  • What is the integration cost? Just drop in a Javascript snippet, or…?
  • How much reporting do we get from the tool vs. what do we need to build in house?
  • Can we pass in some variables for our own custom reporting? Like user_id?
  • Can we ignore integrating with our support ticketing ZenDesk instance right now?

Success criteria:

  • Need to model out cost of one chat person, vs. how many chats they can do vs. how many new conversions those chats can bring.
  • If we can’t make this work in Excel, no point in trying the test.
  • Must get early feedback from cust ops manager and finance.

Running the test

  • How much traffic to send? It’s a function of: number of people who click to chat, average time per chat, number of simultaneous chats we’ll allow, wait time, etc.
  • We can model this, but it’s not worth it given we have no data and lots of assumptions.
  • Instead, let’s roll with a guess, like 20% of traffic, and slowly dial up a knob till we know.
  • How many days do we need to run this? Do we need to worry about traffic seasonality?

What reports do we need?

  • I want to know conversion, revenue, and total orders in the test and control.
  • Also how many people in the test actually engaged (initiated a chat).

Anything else?

  • What about international? I’d say skip it for now.
  • Mobile? Fer sure. 30% are checking out on their phones.
  • Page load times? Make sure this chat widget doesn’t slow down the page!

Anyways, hope this makes sense to you.  The more planning you can do on the front end the more rich you’re going to get.

I call that, “The King David Method”

King David
“Messiah Ben David, King Of Israel…”

P.S.  What’s that got to do with my Presidential Campaign?  Everything.  How would you like to see me planning the “Hostile Takeover” of the Presidency, LIVE, totally demolishing the likes of people like Bernie Sanders (who I GREATLY APPRECIATE AND IS VERY, VERY WISE IN MANY, MANY WAYS)?

Bernie Sanders (AKA... BATMAN)

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