Enable Voice Messaging Through a Website with SpeakPipe
Every once in a while I run across a web tool with functionality I have never considered. SpeakPipe, which I found from Heather Moorefield’s tweet, is one such tool. It allows users to accept voice messages via an embedded widget on their website. While this seems like it would be a complicated process, using SpeakPipe actually makes it very straightforward. Currently in open beta, SpeakPipe walks users through the process of embedding the widget on a variety of types of websites, including WordPress blogs, Tumblrs, Blogger and Joomla to name just a few. If you want to further customize your widget, the settings page offers the ability to alter the look and feel of the widget to fit in with your website’s branding. For those who either can’t install the widget on their website or who wish to share the functionality more widely, the SpeakPipe widget can also be added to Facebook pages to help you connect with your Facebook friends and fans or you can generate a separate, personalized voicemail page. With the widget live on your webpage, visitors will be able to leave messages by clicking on the widget and enabling their computer’s microphone. Messages can be up to 10 minutes long and users have an opportunity to review their message before finalizing it and sending it to your inbox. Once you start receiving messages, they are collected in your SpeakPipe inbox where you can either listen to them in the browser or download them for your records. From your inbox, you can also send voice messages via email to anyone with an email address.
SpeakPipe is extremely easy to install on your website and provides tutorials for those who have trouble with the process. Installing the widget on a website only took me a couple of minutes, at which point it was immediately fully functional. I also found it to be easy for website visitors to use. The widget is well-designed to make the process of recording a message self-explanatory and once a message is sent it arrives almost instantly in your inbox. I could definitely see libraries and others embedding this widget on webpages as another way of reaching out to web visitors. If SpeakPipe sounds interesting, I would recommend trying it out now while it is in beta and completely free (while SpeakPipe promises to permanently continue to offer a free version, they have said that premium features will require a subscription in the future). It is a very promising new tool!