Conversational Commerce: A new era of customer communication

21 July 2021

Conversational Commerce: A new era of customer communication

In recent years, instant messaging has surpassed emails as the primary method of official communication. According to eMarketer, messaging apps had around 149.8 million users in the United States in 2018, with that number expected to rise to 171.3 million by 2022. More and more consumers now get the information they need about a company’s products or services through messaging platforms. Texting is used by 76 percent of people for support and help, and 75 percent of people use it to make purchases. This alone makes conversational commerce a prime candidate for businesses as a new method of communicating with their userbase.

Millennials and Gen Z are increasingly adopting conversational commerce as a more efficient form of e-commerce, despite the fact that the idea of conducting business over messaging apps was initially considered a turn-off in the past. Consumers today communicate with companies in the same way they interact with their friends and family: through messaging platforms like WhatsApp.

Beyond a buzzword

Conversational commerce combines instant messaging platforms with shopping purposes. In 2015, Uber’s Chris Messina coined the phrase “conversational commerce” to describe a firm that interacts with clients via apps such as Facebook Messenger, Telegram, and WhatsApp to enable conversational shopping. Making personalized recommendations, providing delivery notifications, and offering customer support are all part of this. Customers can also use websites to browse and buy products, order groceries, book travel, read reviews, make payments, and check the delivery progress.

Conversational commerce enables a company to provide better e-commerce solutions by prioritizing ease-of-use and personalization for customers looking for quick answers and personalized experiences.

Avenues for conversational commerce

Conversational commerce may take place in a variety of channels, but when you’re deciding on what to implement, you need to take into account what your customers want, rather than what’s expedient for your business. The three most widely used channels are live chat (on your website or app), instant messaging platforms like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, and last but not least, through the use of Chatbots.

Live chat

Live chat assistance is extensively used since it dramatically increases sales. Virgin Airlines saw a 3.5 times greater conversion rate with live chat assistance than with traditional email support even back in 2012. Because everything takes place on the website, it’s ideal for improving customer experience and conversions. That’s probably the biggest advantage over email: customers don’t have to leave your site to send you an email, and they’re immediately connected to an agent and receive a response. Click here to get more detailed info about live chat in our blog.

The implementation of this is very straightforward, especially with a Live Chat SDK like Desk360’s. After integrating the SDK into your app or website, all you need to do is change the look and feel of the chat widget according to your company image, and you’re good to go.

Messaging apps

A messaging app, such as Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp, is a chat platform that allows you to send and receive messages in real-time. Consumers are keen to utilize them for private conversations, brand communication, and online purchases. These apps have really surpassed social media in terms of popularity, as they have a 20% higher user base than social media sites.

Also, popular messaging platforms allow for the use of GIFs, videos, and emoticons, which helps to lighten the tone of the conversation and increase customer engagement. Brands love using messaging applications for this reason. They assist in the creation of far more personal and natural consumer communication, which leads to improved conversion rates. According to data, 70 percent of emotionally involved customers spend twice as much with brands with whom they have an emotional connection as those with which they do not.

Chatbots

A chatbot is a software that assists people by offering text-based answers to their questions. Chatbots have the ability to converse with numerous people at the same time and deliver information in seconds, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can use them on websites as well as messaging services. This enables a conversational experience to be delivered at various phases of the customer journey using channels that are natural for such stages.

Chatbots have become a very popular kind of conversational commerce as a result of all of these features. It is implemented by brands to engage with customers with minimal effort. Chatbots, unlike regular programs, do not require users to learn how to utilize them. In just a few clicks, you can start asking about the status of your previous order, reschedule your travel, or look for the address of the nearest store. That’s why they’ve become increasingly popular with people who aren’t as tech-savvy or with people who can’t be bothered to speak with a brand representative.

The future of business is conversational commerce. It’s not only a terrific way to give your clients immediate help right on your website; it’s also a way to develop trust and brand loyalty. We at Desk360 would be pleased to assist you if you’re looking for a means to add live chat or a chatbot to your website or app, or if you need to improve your current implementation. Please visit our website to see what we have to offer, and if you have any questions, feel free to contact us by email.

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