An e-commerce website that doesn’t offer ways for customers to interact with the brand is no more than an online vending machine. That’s right. An impassive vending machine that buyers will kick hard, swear at, and never come back to if you don’t deliver their order correctly.
In today’s highly interactive business world, you can’t expect customers to come and buy from you just because you have a store. Your e-commerce store can do better than that; you need to embrace conversational commerce. E-commerce shoppers are busy, fickle, and impatient because they are spoiled for choices. If they walk into your store and don’t receive an experience that meets or exceeds their expectations, they will just look around, shrug “meh”, and go to the next website that does. You need to interact with them and tap into their buying intent while they are at the peak of their brand engagement.
Offering a live chat widget on your e-commerce website is the best thing you can do to serve your customers better, both; first-timers and returning patrons. You can use live chat as a conversational commerce channel to engage with customers in case they need help with anything. But that’s not all, you can use live chat as a proactive tool to deploy timely and contextual messages to prevent website exists.
If you don’t have live chat on your website, we are here to argue that you should. Here are our strongest reasons why you should make use of conversational commerce-
1. Chat enhances in the moment engagement
The best part about adding that tiny, non-intrusive live chat widget in your e-commerce website is that customer engagement happens in the real-time. Online buyers don’t like to call or email businesses these days; that’s too much work and takes too long. Why in the world would a customer call you via phone to go through the painful ordeal of complex phone-trees and never-ending hold tones? Why should they “compose an email” to your customer support to check if you have the same brand of red stilettos that they saw in The Devil Wears Prada?
But typing their query via live chat is second nature for buyers these days. After all, they spend a majority of their time sending texts, IMs, Snapchat, DMs, among means of messaging. And the live chat response is blisteringly fast than any other means of communication.
2. Live chat reduces website drop-offs
If your e-commerce website has a high drop-off rate, it suffers from the universal epidemic of cart abandonment. One way to retarget lapsing customers and drive more sales on your websites is by enabling highly personalized, contextual push notifications. And here’s what it can be complimented with — live chat!
Imagine this; a shopper comes to your website, checks out the variety of red stilettos in your product listing, double-clicks the price tags multiple times, and takes off without leaving any hint. That implies that she’s interested in the item but something is holding back from making the purchase, right? Maybe she didn’t like your price or maybe she was just comparing your prices with other e-commerce sites. You have no control over what she thinks, but you can ease their decision-making by being helpful to her in time.
For example, you can throw a live chat bait to complete their shopping based on her navigation behavior (e.g., mouse clicks, page visits, etc.). You can program your live chat tool to understand event-based behavior and automate contextual messages that entice her to purchase the stilettos she is evaluating. You can say:
“Hey Pretty, you like them pair of red devils, don’t you? Copy-paste discount code RED10 and get an instant 10% off on those high heels. Hurry, time is running and the discount is short-lived.”
I don’t know about you, but if I were my girlfriend, I would fall for anything that had a combination of words “pretty” plus “discount” in the same sentence.
Now an upstanding robot machine can’t do all that and more, will it? Conversational commerce is the future!
3. Live chat is personalized
If there is something that sells in today’s competitive e-commerce market, it’s personalized experiences. According to a Digital Trends report, close to 73% customers prefer to buy from businesses who personalize their buying experiences. Yep, personalization is right up there in customers’ favorite list after red hot discounts.
Online buyers crave for personalization without even realizing it. People love businesses like Netflix, Uber, and Amazon because their services are so customized that it exceeds the customers’ expectations. What you can do to make your e-commerce website highly personalized to buyers is based on AI-powered algorithms. Live chat adds to your business capability of offering personalized care to geographically-disconnected customers.
You obviously can’t deliver personalized buying experience to customers through email or phone because they are passive mediums. The buying experience over phone and emails are broken from your e-commerce UI anyways. And hence, it’s context-deprived and yawn-inducing. And unscalable.
Meanwhile, live chat provides plenty of opportunities for you to give one-on-one attention to each customer who visits your websites.
Here is a classic example:
But personalization doesn’t mean you have to hire mighty Thors by the thousands to chat with each of your website visitors. You can automate the right message to appear the right person based on various parameters such as the time of the day, language preferences, social media profile, geographical location, chat (or, purchase) history, and navigation behavior.
4. Chat is multidimensional
Live chat for e-commerce caters to all use cases across the board, be it sales, marketing, or customer support. You can use live chat intelligently to generate more leads for your business or you can use it to drive sales. Chat is the most preferred medium for customer support across industries, and it’s especially useful for e-commerce businesses to curb page drop-offs.
Most e-commerce businesses are not limited by geographical boundaries, and therefore, it becomes imperative for them to speak to their buyers in their local languages. You can use a live chat software that offers real-time language transliteration capability to better understand your buyers’ needs and expand your consumer base.
Unlike other means of customer engagement, a live chat tool offers the perfect balance of human touch and automation. You can have a chat bot to greet and engage with first-time visitors while they wait for a human agent to takeover chats. You can display business hours in your chat widget to set the right expectations for your customers, or you can automate the chat-bots to kick-in during offline hours.
Live chat is objectively the most powerful engagement tool that is useful for all stages of the customer life-cycle — marketing, nurturing, sales, and retention.
5. Chat improves your bottom line
Cost-saving is perhaps the most convincing reason any business comes up with before investing in a tool. Live chat is right up your alley if all your e-commerce company wants is to justify the ROI.
To begin with, live chat doesn’t cost much; in fact, a research from Forrester finds that setting up a live chat is 17-30% cheaper than phone support. If you compare the operating cost of chat support with email, the latter is not only costly in terms of pricing but also the time that goes into corresponding to customers. Email and phone contact centers also accrue huge maintenance cost while adopting live chat promises minimal resource commitment. Most of the modern live chat tools also integrate well with other software in your tech stack, mobile apps, and chat bots — which makes it a great fit to your all-star software team.
Your sales and support reps can only handle one email or one phone call at a time, which adds to your overhead costs and prolongs response time. Not a great experience to offer to your customers. Meanwhile, a chat agent can handle up to 4–5 customers at a time without compromising on the quality of communication because live chat is designed for that kind of multi-tasking capability.
It’s also worth reiterating the automated advantages of live chat makes it a tool that works for you 24/7. A chat bot captures lead data when a new visitor comes to your website and pass on to your CRM. Similarly, the chat bot can proxy a customer support rep during non-business hours and create a new ticket in your help-desk software when a customer reports an issue about their purchase.
Level up your business potential with live chat
For any e-commerce business, incorporating a live chat channel in their website means generating more leads, encouraging more repeat purchases, and improving brand loyalty. Live chat offers a convenient experience for customers because messaging apps are an integral part of their everyday life. The convenience factor is true on the business side as well because of how easy it is to set up a live chat, its affordability, ROI, and the multi-fold benefits it offers.
But you wouldn’t know until you try, now would you?