eCommerce is booming. In 2021, the number of digital buyers reached 2.14 billion which means that one out of every four people in the world is an online shopper.
With eCommerce on the rise, so are eCommerce chatbots powered by Conversational AI. A Juniper Research study found that by 2023, 70% of all chatbots will be serving retail brands and will generate $112 billion in transactions.
With this increase in digital consumption can come a decrease in customer loyalty. A study found that only 9% of consumers are brand loyal. eCommerce companies now compete as much on customer experience as on price: 61% of customers have switched brands because of poor customer service! More than ever, prioritizing customer service is paying off: U.S. consumers say they are willing to spend 17% more with companies that provide excellent service.
In this online shopping world, virtual assistants can be perceived as impersonal and unable to add any real value to the customer experience. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, with advances in AI technology and machine learning, chatbots are doing exactly the opposite: providing personalized, fast, and accurate interactions between brands and individual shoppers, and at a huge scale.
It’s also important to remember that chatbots are not designed to replace humans, but rather to complement and empower human support agents in their repetitive tasks. Bots provide customers a reliable and fast way to interact with a brand and help retailers streamline their processes, improve customer experience and loyalty, and sell more.
To understand just how much of a game-changer an eCommerce chatbot can be for your business, put yourself in the shoes of a customer. You are on your favorite clothing website, looking for a last-minute gift on a Friday night. You find the perfect item, but you have some doubts: will it be delivered on time? how do they size? what’s the return policy? You need help after hours, no sales support in sight, and the last thing you want to do is sift through a long FAQ. With an eCommerce chatbot, you’d have answers to all of these questions, instantly.
But first, what's a shopping bot? A shopping bot, self-service automated system, can become the best customer service employee. In fact, they do more than just reply with pre-set answers: they are able to provide the information the customers need to turn them from consideration to purchase.
Retail bots are available to help customers 24/7, providing personalized and accurate service on any channel. The constant availability and consistency of a chatbot enhance the customer shopping experience.
Chatbots answer FAQs, offer product recommendations, compare prices, respond quickly to product-related inquiries, provide an easy payment gateway, and so much more. Chatbots also interact with customers on their preferred channels - the web, mobile app, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Voice, and more.
Conversational AI chatbots can understand shoppers' preferences and provide personalized product recommendations. A chatbot can not only answer a variety of questions but can also be configured to provide a fully personalized shopping experience.
This personalization and always-on support improves the shopping experience, and in turn, sales. For example, having a virtual personal shopper to guide the customer about sizing can decrease the number of returns. Over 30% of all products ordered online are returned as compared to 8.89% in brick-and-mortar stores. With a chatbot helping guide the customer, there is less hassle for the customer when it comes to returning an item, and the retailer also saves significant costs associated with returns management.
The checkout process is also streamlined by an AI chatbot. In the same conversation window, a chatbot connected to Facebook Messenger can guide a customer to make a direct payment via chat, without going through the traditional payment page.
Making changes to an order or tracking the status of delivery are mundane tasks that should not require a human agent. Not only is it costly to have agents perform these simple tasks, but it often results in longer wait and resolution times, increasing customer (and agent!) frustration.
Thanks to their multilingual chatbot, Voyage Privé has been able to reduce the contact rate so now agents are able to focus on the more complex use cases and customer service has improved.
With shopping bots acting as the first line of support, your support agents can provide responsive, personalized support. No longer having to deal with large volumes of repetitive questions, your customer service agents will have more time and energy to focus on complex inquiries
Promoting a new product, a loyalty reward, or a personalized offer are all great use cases for an eCommerce bot. A chatbot allows you to increase the chances that your offer will be seen versus sending yet another promotional email that can end up in the trash or in spam. With a chatbot, you can ensure your offers are seen by your customers on your preferred channels.
To get the best customer shopping experience, you’ve got to engage with your customers at every step of their shopping journey. To do this effectively and at scale, an AI chatbot is the answer!
Are you ready to build a chatbot for your eCommerce business and start improving customer loyalty and sales? Let’s talk!
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Chatbot software can also help mid-size business improve their customer experience and satisfaction by automating customer service.