Integrating Intercom into a Production Meteor App

The project I’ve been working on for the last few months is Sightline Maps, an easy interface for 3D printing topographical maps. It’s mostly marketed towards the U.S. Military, but anyone can use it to print a map.

We launched it August 1st and it’s been going well! Our traction is reasonable for a product launched just over two weeks ago, averaging 150–200 sessions per day (peak of 44 simultaneous connections). But there’s a problem… Our bounce rate is around 80%.

Sessions v. Bounce Rate

Our solution? The same one that everyone else uses: Intercom.io. Our goal is to get ahold of these potential customers to answer their questions before they leave — perfect for the new Acquire package, currently in beta.

We also want to know more about who they are. After looking over our existing customers, there doesn’t seem to be a pattern among non-military customers. If we could find out who they are and what they’re using the maps for, we could better target our marketing.

Step 1

The first step is to go to Intercom.io and sign up. Then select the relevant details (web app if you’re using Meteor) and copy-paste the code block into the template of the page in which you would like to use Intercom. I’m using it on my home page with Blaze, so it will look something like this:

<template name="home">
<script>
window.intercomSettings = {
app_id: "..."
};
</script>
<script>(function()...)</script>

</template>

Since I’m just doing this for visitors, I don’t need the chat feature for logged in users. Intercom will have you validate that it worked, and then you’re brought to the tutorial.

Step 2

The next step is to add Acquire. You can do this by clicking on the Intercom icon in the top left and adding it.

Then we’re going to make a few slight alterations to the styling to make the icons match our theme. For that we click on the gear in the top right, then “Settings for <company name>”, in our case “Settings for Sightline Maps”. Click on “Appearance” on the left and change the color.

And now you’re done! That was much easier than expected. Everything else is handled within the Intercom app. I’ll go into greater detail about how this works and how we’ve used it in a later post.

Additional

I’m really impressed with Intercom’s onboarding process and their docs. It’s not a coincidence that nearly every startup is using their tech!

I’ll write a followup post in the coming weeks about whether we found success with this endeavor. Hopefully, we can convert a few of these visitors into customers and reduce our bounce rate. If we get it below 50%, I’ll know we have Intercom to thank.

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