We briefly discussed this topic in “The role of AI in digital marketing” but wanted to go a little deeper because we believe that Conversational Commerce is a resource that is trending and it is certainly valuable for companies.
The concept of Conversational Commerce was introduced in 2013/2014 and started to gain in importance after Chris Messina’s Medium post “2016 will be the year of Conversational Commerce”. He defined this concept as the process of “utilizing chat, messaging, or other natural language interfaces (i.e. voice) to interact with people, brands, or services and bots that heretofore have had no real place in the bidirectional, asynchronous messaging context”.
There are a couple of advantages in using Conversational Commerce as a resource to help you manage interaction with clients.
1) Improved Customer Support
The use of chatbots offers great advantages that allows companies to save time and resources. Chatbots improve customer support before and after the purchase occurs by helping customers choose which product to buy and solving possible questions about a previously bought product. This tool is not yet 100% accurate and sometimes there is a need for human interaction, but it definitely helps to solve a lot of problems.
Keep in mind that users spend less than 1% of their time on your website and have a great range of options to choose from if your platform does not work properly or at least the way they expect it to work that is why providing support via email and taking two days to solve a problem fails to keep customers engaged, and they will most likely find another solution. Good customer support helps you win clients and keep them.
2) The value of interaction
The best example is ride-sharing apps, which already allow you to contact the driver in real time with a text or phone call, solving problems such as possible delays that have no clear explanation.
Interaction is highly valued by customers, which is why chatbots are a plus where customer service is concerned, providing as they do the possibility of interacting in real time, so adding value to your product or service.
3) Messaging apps vs Social networks
Since 2015 the number of users of the top four messaging apps has exceeded the number of users of the top foursocial networks, according to Business Insider.
People are using messaging apps more than social networks, creating the need for companies to be close to these apps and reach customers where they are.
4) Buy products on social media
Some social networks and chat apps already allow you to make direct purchases via the app but there is still a long way to go to overcome some restrictions. Right now, for example, there is the possibility of using plugins for e-commerce shops in messaging apps to simplify the buying process.
This will definitely change the way advertising is done, prompting companies to advertise within messaging apps, using ads triggered by specific words or phrases.
5) Ultimate Goal
The ultimate objective is certainly to gather all kinds of services in messenger apps since these are the most used ones.
Facebook Messenger started by doing simple things such as using addresses to link directly to map applications or dates to create plans. This will certainly evolve into more complicated processes such as shopping directly on the app, booking trips, and syncing with many more apps for more complex tasks.
We will certainly see many changes over the next few months, after all, there is scope for a number of upgrades that will make Conversational Commerce more widely used and an indispensable resource.