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Cobrowsing vs Screen Sharing: Which is a Better Visual Engagement Tool?

Laduram Vishnoi
6 min read
Cobrowsing vs Screen Sharing: Which is a Better Visual Engagement Tool?

Companies like Apple and Amazon are integrating visual engagement solutions into their businesses, allowing the creation of stronger, deeper customer relationships and taking their customer experience to another level. These solutions include the likes of cobrowsing and video chat, amongst others. 

“Adding a human touch to your customer’s experience can help you distinguish your brand. Visual engagement tools, such as co-browsing and video chat can help build an emotional bond with customers.” – Venesha Brooks

Visual engagement solutions create richer interactions, allowing customer service agents to guide customers through online processes in real-time, reducing response times and boosting engagement. With the help of cobrowsing or screen sharing software, you can deliver top-notch customer service and improve your customers’ experience.

But what exactly is cobrowsing? And how does it differ from screen sharing?

Many users are confused by this issue.

So, let’s take a look at how both technologies can be used in the workplace to best serve your business needs.


What is cobrowsing?

Cobrowsing, a.k.a collaborative browsing, brings customers and agents together on the same page. With the click of a button, customer service agents can instantly connect to customers’ web browsers.

Through viewing and interacting with their browsers, agents are able to handle complex queries and provide live, personalized guidance. Cobrowsing is incredibly useful software when it comes to delivering the best customer experience possible. 

The advantages:

    • The ability to live share a web page is one of the great features of a visual engagement tool like cobrowsing. This means demonstrations can be made on a real-time basis across both screens.
    • Customers and agents can mouse over the other party’s browser page to pinpoint and highlight particular areas, making it easier to understand each other.
    • As far as privacy is concerned, agents can only see the browser page in question. They cannot see, nor gain access to, other tabs, pages or even applications — unlike with screen sharing.
    • Most users report cobrowsing to be user-friendly, and to top it off, a user doesn’t have to download an application and install it before using it, saving time and mitigating malware threats.

Check out some more advantages here.

The disadvantages

    • Since cobrowsing tools are totally dependent on streaming, a strong internet connection speed at both ends is a must. Without this, the feed quality becomes poor, impeding communication.

Perfect for:

Cobrowsing is great for companies interacting with both potential clients and existing customers. It is particularly useful for:

    • Agents
    • Consultants
    • Online retailers
    • Customer relationship executives
    • Sales or technical consultants

Why should you select cobrowsing?

According to a recent report by Forbes interactions including cobrowsing have much higher satisfaction rates — close to 89.3%.

Visual engagement tools like cobrowsing bridge the gap between two parties without compromising privacy and security.

Along with live video chatting, cobrowsing is already used by many companies as a highly capable troubleshooting technology.

Use Case

Cobrowsing for Insurance Company

Let's have a look at one of the practical applications of cobrowsing in the insurance industry.

Problem area

Claiming insurance is by no means hassle-free. First, customers have to go through reams of documents and forms, figure out where they need to sign, attach the required proof, and verify it with the insurance agent.

Without a visual engagement tool, agents cannot see exactly where customers are stuck and therefore cannot address customer queries in a single session. As a result, multiple back and forths create a seemingly endless loop of communication between insurance agents and customers.


Using cobrowsing, agents can access customers’ screens whilst simultaneously interacting with them over a call. Because agents can instantly access customers’ documents, they can easily answer questions, spot data fields, fill the necessary details or give instructions with visual cues.

Any concerns around security are alleviated by data masking. Customers can hide confidential details from agents by obscuring particular data fields from view. Such is the power of using cobrowsing in this context, it takes care of 70% of an insurance agent’s workload.


Streamline processes - Cobrowsing not only speeds up approval, but customers troubled by cumbersome claims processes can have their assessment completed in one sitting.

Quick turnaround - The insurance claims process, often taking up to 4 days, can be finished in as little as 1 hour.

Complete transparency - Due to the inclusion of visual engagement, the experience is enriched, becoming more stimulating and aiding comprehension between the two parties.

First contact resolution -  Most service desk agents are able to resolve complex customer queries during the first interaction.

Screen Share:

What is screen sharing?

By installing screen share, a user can see and gain access to the entire screen of another party. The user can easily control and make changes to the other screen as they want. Both parties just have to install the 3rd party application beforehand.

The user — in this case, the agent — can even show the customer things outside of the browser. With this technology, users can show and share, or give demos on their screen.

screen sharing

Screen sharing allows a user and another party to interact seamlessly with each other through their computer screens.


    • Users can solve any type of issue right there on the computer, problem-solving in real-time. 
    • The application allows for sharing across several monitors, enabling presenters to share across multiple users.
    • The most important feature of screen share is the ‘view’ and ‘show’ mode, with users able to shift from one to the other instantly.


    • Since screen sharing requires installation by all parties involved, it can lead to spamming. But screen sharing’s main drawback is that your screen can be controlled by someone else, hence compromising security and putting your data at risk.
    • Different people accessing the application on different browsers has the potential to create issues as the software ergonomics can change.
    • The application is limited to only one user sharing their screen at any given time.

Perfect for:

The screen share software is most beneficial for:

    • Sales executives
    • Tech support executives
    • Other professionals

Screen share is useful when you need to guide customers through various topics or information. 

For instance, sales representatives can use it to showcase their company’s warranty policy file on a PDF to their customer.

Why should you choose it?

If your company is particularly involved in presenting live demos then the application could prove useful to you.

Multiple sharing is also available if you want to share screens or thoughts across multiple viewers.

Use Case

Screen sharing for internal collaboration

Screen share is mainly used for internal collaboration. Teams using screen share can discuss product upgrades, review a customer case, and discuss the solution for bugs, errors, and more. Screen share also ensures every team member stays on the same page while working within a spreadsheet or blueprint.

Screen sharing technology is used to:

    • Pitch solutions
    • Present case studies
    • Present reports and statistics
    • Present company goals
    • Receive real-time feedback from team members
    • Present creative campaigns

Screen sharing or cobrowsing — which one to pick?

Whenever you select an application for your company, always make sure you are getting a sustainable long-term solution. Your application should have the capacity to grow along with your company.

Both the technologies have their own merits, however, the market leans slightly towards cobrowsing as it provides such a simple user-interface. Moreover, cobrowsing solutions don’t require installation or configuration, running on all browsers.

This enables quick sharing, extremely helpful when you have multiple clients, especially in sales and customer care domains.

Cobrowsing when combined with live video chatting can become one of the most powerful communication tools in your arsenal.

However, screen sharing does have its benefits too, particularly the multiple screen sharing option, ‘show’ or ‘view’ mode and its ability to go outside the browser.

Your choice depends on your business requirements and what you are most comfortable with. As it stands, more and more companies are implementing cobrowsing solutions, because of its increased security and ease of use.

Cobrowsing vs. Screen Sharing

            Cobrowsing                Screen Sharing
What agents can controlCobrowsing, a.k.a collaborative browsing, allows agents to access customers’ browsers or the active tab of the customers' screens.Screen sharing allows agents to see and control customers’ screens in their entirety.
Scope of accessibilityAgents can give visual instructions, navigate across the web or mobile pages, and perform actions on behalf of customers.Agents can gain access to customers’ devices to guide them through fixing a problem, however, agents cannot perform tasks on behalf of customers.
Working on the same pageOffers collaborative browsing - this feature enables agents and customers to simultaneously work on the same web browser (resource) using dual cursors.Does not offer collaborative browsing - with screen share, agents and customers cannot work simultaneously on the same web resource.
Control over customer resources Agents can only see tabs customers have opened for them. They cannot access other tabs or pages.Agents can see other opened tabs and pages.
Access to Confidential DataCustomers can restrict agents from accessing any confidential or sensitive information.Agents can see confidential data and access sensitive customer details.
Third-Party downloadsNo need for third-party installations and external downloads.Traditional screen sharing channels typically require an application download and installation.

Bottom line

Live visual engagement has become popular in recent years and the stats prove the validity of the role it plays in helping companies enhance and enrich their customers’ experience. 

These technologies comprehensively reduce:

    • Handling times, hence facilitating quicker resolutions
    • The need for multiple calls to resolve an issue
    • Potential future calls from customers

These technologies can also be useful:

    • For your support and sales teams
    • To facilitate real-time interaction and troubleshooting
    • To enhance customer experience

So, don’t miss out on the opportunity to supercharge your customer interactions. Integrate visual engagement solutions into your company and connect better with your customers.

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