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Conversational Commerce is still the future of e-commerce

Marketing Specialist

You and I will be talking to brands and companies over Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Telegram, Slack…and will find it normal

Chris Messina (2016)

In 2015, Chris Messina introduced us to Conversational Commerce and suggested that “2016 would have been the year of conversational commerce”.
7 years later, Ogilvy’s Greece white paper “Conversational Commerce: οι επιχειρήσεις στην εποχή του messaging” (Ogilvy UAE: “Business in the Era of Conversation”), confirms that Conversational Commerce, or chat commerce is still relevant and has seen exponential growth, with consumers choosing chat platforms such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Telegram and Viber as their preferred way of communication with companies.

What favors Conversational Commerce?

1. The Market Shift

Even before the Covid-19 pandemic consumers were familiar with e-commerce, however Covid-19 completely shifted their habits and they became more trusting towards online shopping.

The average share of internet users who made purchases online increased from 53% before the pandemic to 60% following the onset of the pandemic.

We all use e-commerce platforms whether that is to purchase a product or research and compare prices. And most often, we do it through our smartphones (half of all web traffic coming from mobile devices). This shift in shopping habits has resulted in a more “digital path” with brick-and-mortar stores, losing popularity.

However, e-commerce platforms lack the live support that physical stores offer. This is where conversational commerce can become a valuable asset. Chat commerce allows companies to easily reach their customers and assist them via chat apps and conversational applications, instead of putting them on hold or requesting all shorts of authentications to complete a request.

With conversational commerce, customers can chat with live agents or AI virtual assistants to get support and personalized recommendations, book tickets, make reservations, purchase and schedule deliveries and ultimately have a unique and frictionless experience.

2. The Customer Expectations

Customer expectations have changed and while quality and price are important, they are no longer a top priority. Customers value unique experiences, with speed and personalization being essential ingredients to achieve them. Multichannel and zero-friction are must-haves to win over customer’s loyalty.

84% state that the experience a brand offers is as important as its products while 86% of customers will leave a brand they trust after two poor experiences.

With conversational commerce, companies can be present throughout the customer journey, in every channel and every messaging platform.

Chat commerce can be your digital concierge, available 24/7 to support your customers, by providing personalized solutions and recommendations. With conversational commerce, companies can minimize the friction within the customer journey (mobile-unfriendly websites, lack of online payments, lack of digital support, slow load times etc.), thus exceeding customer expectations.

Benefits of Conversational Commerce

Chat commerce provides the mobile-friendly, zero-friction experience that customers demand. But that’s not all…

1. Improved Customer Experience
Conversational commerce allows companies to be present throughout the customer’s journey in the sales funnel, offering quick & easy, 24/7 support, resulting in lower need for lengthy phone calls and unanswered emails.

2. Generate leads
During the decision making process, customers often seek answers to specific questions and reassurance regarding the product’s features and quality. A quick and personalized conversation can result in a quicker decision and as a result, a successful sale.

3. Reduce Customer Churn
Were you aware that 70% of shopping carts are abandoned?
Through chat commerce, you can automate the payment process to provide the quick and frictionless experience customers desire. Moreover, through automations you can send reminder emails and offer assistance to your customers (pre and post purchase).

Conversational Commerce in use — indicative use cases

Skroutz Last Mile
Skroutz Last Mile is a courier service that manages and distributes Skroutz Marketplace orders. By deploying Môveo’s AI virtual assistant on Viber, they are able to offer a multichannel and frictionless experience to their customers. For every unsuccessful product delivery, a conversation begins on Viber or the Webchat, allowing customers to reschedule the delivery at the time and place of their choice.

Clever Point
Clever Point is a shipping and mailing service in Greece. Customers can chat with Môveo’s AI virtual assistant in Clever Point’s Webchat 24/7, to track, send or return parcels. No more staying on hold until a live-agent tracks a parcel or having to constantly provide the tracking number.

Avis is an American car rental company. With the help of Môveo’s AI virtual assistant, they able to support clients through not only their mobile-friendly website, but also Viber. A 24/7, frictionless support is available for customers who want to contact Avis, book an appointment, rent or lease a car, etc.

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