If you're looking to create a better presence for your brand online, then you're in the right place.
When customers shop online, they’re often exploring new products or buying things they know work. This helps well-established online retailers, but how can it help young brands & businesses that are just starting out?
That is exactly where conversational commerce comes in,
Conversational Commerce is a very effective tool that helps your regular customers and even your new customers to directly have a conversation with your brand and get to know each of your products.
What is conversational commerce?
Conversational commerce platforms are a different approach to e-commerce - one that’s more interactive and relies more on communicating with the customer through the entire buying journey. In other words, it’s all about transforming the buying journey into a conversation. You could compare conversational commerce to buying in stores with the exception of it being carried out through a digital medium - which is why conversational commerce has become the latest trend in e-commerce.
In an effort to provide the best possible shopping experience, e-commerce has turned towards adopting conversational commerce.
E-commerce, as a whole, refers to the buying and selling of goods over the internet. But there are a couple of ways of carrying out these purchases.
Usually, it’s done through a web or mobile app, where the customers browse through a website, click to buy, and that’s it - “Expect a package between 4-6 business days.”
To understand what conversational commerce is, we first need to look at the big picture.
How does conversational commerce work ?
Conversational commerce aims to enhance commercial interactions between business and customers by making it more personalized, scalable and cost effective.
They make optimum use of conversational interfaces like chatbots, messaging apps, live chats, etc. to provide customer support and drive sales. Here’s how they typically work-
Awareness is the beginning when a customer has a need for a product and is looking to fulfill that need, they come across your product and it meets exactly what they’re looking for. Simply putting ads out, or putting recommendations in the sidebar of your website is all it takes. Conversational commerce can convey information about your product in a more interactive way.
Once a customer has discovered which product they need, the next step is research. Here, they will start researching for which solution is the most suitable for their needs.
With the help of conversational commerce, you can easily answer any complex queries of your customers and provide them with better assistance. Overall, this will make the webpage more engaging for your users and will help you stay on top of the competition.
After a customer has done their research, they will come to the decision making part of whether or not they would proceed to purchase.
Here is where conversational commerce comes in place, most ecommerce websites can meet their customers at this stage and keep them engaged. This will help you answer your customer’s query at that stage so that they don’t change their mind.
This is the main stage where the consumer is convinced with which product they want and have gone ahead with the decision to make the purchase. This is where conversational commerce can simplify the whole purchasing step for your users.
This will help keep customers engaged on the payment page. Helping your users complete the purchasing process can reduce the chances of cart abandonment.
Types of conversational commerce
Voice assistants are a type of software that are controlled by voice commands for eg. Siri, Alexa, Google assistant, etc. These voice assistants have gained more and more recognition because of how conveniently they can answer user queries through voice commands.
With its advanced features this software has now become an effective tool for both marketing and customer service. Since it answers the queries of your website users quicker than agents. Along with answering queries, voice assistants also provide personalized recommendations to users based on their previous browsing habits.
Chatbots are a very common and very popular type of conversational commerce. Chatbots or AI Chatbots are conversational tools that use artificial intelligence (AI) and human language to understand and answer customer queries. They respond to customer queries through text messages.
They can be used to guide users at different stages of their journey on the website and thereby act as a virtual personal assistant. This will enhance the overall user experience and answer even complex customer queries.
Here’s how you can build a chatbot for your business and deploy it on your website - Create a no-code Chatbot for free
Live chat is a better alternative for phone-based customer service. A live chat is a text message session initiated by a customer and is between the customer and a live agent. The conversation is initiated when a user types in their query on a pop-up box on the website.
In a live chat the customer query is answered by an agent or customer service representative in charge, which helps provide better assistance.
Apps like WhatsApp, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. have gained a lot of popularity, these platforms let you send messages instantly. These conversations are encrypted and thus it is preferred by most users. Most users use these platforms to carry out light hearted conversations or share and create memes, GIF, videos, images, etc.
Ecommerce businesses can use these platforms to engage their customers by responding to their memes and interacting more actively. By actively interacting with your users, you can help your users build a relationship with your brand.
Things to consider while implementing conversational commerce
A lot of businesses assume that conversational commerce is the equivalent of using a chatbot as a cashier, but it’s more than that. It’s about using a chatbot (or a live agent) to engage with customers through the purchase journey, from start to finish.
A couple of things to keep in mind when implementing conversational commerce solutions for your business/brand:
You wouldn’t operate in a place where the population is scarce, would you? Think about this the same way when it comes to messaging platforms. If your customers are on WhatsApp, move to WhatsApp; If they’re mainly on Facebook, move to Facebook Messenger. And if they’re visible on both chat apps, why not both?
Chatbots are the frontline of your website, so add your own creative flair to them. Make them interactive, make them conversational.
Remember that conversational commerce isn’t only limited to chatbots. Add the human element by adding live chat into the mix, especially to handle more complex interactions. Design your eCommerce chatbot as if they are a salesperson, but don’t underestimate the power of a live agent.
Conversational commerce can streamline all processes of the purchase journey, but most businesses tend to focus only on the conversion phase. You have to remember that the most influential part of the purchase journey is the research phase. If a customer leaves your website to research about your product on their own, you are actually empowering them to make the decision. Done well, this can build a strong connection between the potential customer and your brand by creating a positive customer experience.
A chatbot, coupled with a live agent can handle product inquiries and streamline the process of buying - it’s up to you to allow them to.
Examples of companies that have implemented conversational commerce?
Blibli is one of the largest Indonesian e-commerce platforms, with a focus on delivering the best shopping experience for a better life. Using a Messenger chatbot, Blibli was able to provide a quick and easy way for customers to buy products. From product search, to cart management, this chatbot made it possible to drive the entire purchase process and drive sales without any human assistance.
360 Mall, based in Kuwait, acts as a virtual assistant through the shopping experience. It pings customers and alerts them whenever there are promotions going on, and answers any questions in real-time.
Gruppi is a Hungarian online retailer specializing in home improvement, hardware, and electronics. Through their chatbot, Gréti, customers have the ability to browse through the website’s catalogue. Their chatbots also provide personalized recommendations based on the customer’s interests and provide additional customer service as well.
Ride the conversational commerce wave
With the combination of e-commerce chatbots and Live Chat, you too can ride the conversational commerce wave. And with Engati’s digital customer experience solutions, you can get started for free.
Register now to get started.