When you’re selling your products online, it doesn’t excuse you from giving customers a superb and personalized experience. Each customer will have different concerns, reasons for purchase, and order problems. Since e-commerce is easy to scale, you can end up with thousands of customer support requests a day. And while having an all-human customer support team is excellent, it sure is expensive and exhausting. That’s where e-commerce chatbots come in. These chatbots do the hard work for you, checking on customer orders, answering frequent questions, and freeing your time. That way, you can focus on steering your company, innovating, and succeeding.
As a result, you and your team don’t get bogged down in customer support. Answering the same freaking question one hundred times a day isn’t a good use of anyone’s time, right? Let’s dig deeper into the world of E-Commerce Chatbots.
So, What’s an E-Commerce Chatbot?
Well, an e-commerce chatbot is just like those tiny chat robots you see popping up on your favorite websites. You know, the ones that ask if you need help or say something silly and cute just to spark a conversation – yep, those. E-commerce chatbots are digital assistants specifically designed to help online shoppers find what they’re looking for and complete their transactions without any significant hiccups (or even having to pick up the phone). They can do all kinds of things: check prices and specs, answer frequently asked questions (FAQs), retrieve shipping status updates, give product recommendations, and more.
Why Are E-Commerce Chatbots So Popular?
For starters, they lower customer support costs (yay!). But honestly, their popularity has skyrocketed in the last few years for one big reason: they work. For example, let’s say you’re browsing an online retailer and aren’t sure whether or not you can afford that fancy camera lens you’ve had your eye on. You might ask the chatbot something like this:
“Hey, chatbot! I’m looking to buy a 70-200mm lens. Can you give me some options that are around $1,000?”
And voila! The chatbot pulls up several lenses for you within your price range. Easy as pie, right? Chatbots are built to answer questions just like that. They can quickly point out specs, provide recommendations, and even help shoppers find cheaper alternatives if needed!
Plus, chatbots hold all kinds of helpful information about each product at their fingertips. They know everything from the number of items in stock to the return policy. And since e-commerce sites come with so many products, it would be impossible (and very time-consuming) for humans to memorize all of there. This is why chatbots are so great! They can pull up specific product info on command, creating a personalized experience for the shopper.
E-Commerce Chatbots Take the Hassle Out of Customer Support
Another reason why e-commerce chatbots are so popular is that they solve customers’ problems without human intervention. Think about it: if I have an issue with my Amazon order or want to cancel something, do I really want to wait on hold forever just to be able to talk to someone? Heck no! And that’s where e-commerce chat comes in – these little guys.
3 E-Commerce Chatbot Examples You Need to Know About
Everybody wants attention. If you’re running a company or a marketing team, you have to prioritize your time. You try to get to your most essential or loyal customers first. You let customers know you’re looking into their issue when you’re really just swamped. And yea, every customer wants information: 1.) Product information, 2.) Order tracking, 3.) Product issues, 4.) Shipping costs, 5.) Promotion terms, 6.) Gift cards, and frankly, the list goes on and on.
So, how do you let these little robot guys work for you? Well, you have to actually connect your e-commerce website with a chatbot service like Clever Messenger before it can start helping shoppers out. But don’t worry—it’s not complicated at all! Here are three companies that offer free e-commerce chatbot services:
For example, let’s say someone wants to return an item they purchased from your online boutique. They decide to hit up your live chat, and the customer sends a message like this:
“Hey, chatbot! I’d like to return this item. How do I go about doing that?”
If you have a chatbot installed, it takes care of everything for them, giving them step-by-step instructions on what to do next! Plus, the chatbot eliminates customer’s worries by taking care of all their product-related questions or concerns before they have a chance to arise.
Without a chatbot, you would have spent quite some time making phone calls and answering emails just to get all of this information across to your customers. But with their services at work, you get access to an easy-to-use chatbot right away without any installation or coding required.
Assist in Purchasing
For another example, let’s say someone wants more details on one of your products that aren’t listed on your e-commerce website. A customer might ask the chatbot something like,
“Hey, chatbot! Can you provide me with more information on this product?”
The chatbot then pulls up that specific item and provides relevant product details such as dimensions, weight, video links, etc. All of this will be displayed right in the customer’s messaging window to make a quick decision about whether or not it is right for them.
Without help from a chatbot, you would have to manually search through your products and pull up those details one by one. That takes time! With e-commerce chatbots at work, though, you save time by automating those tasks. Instead of spending your valuable hours searching through products manually, you can let the chatbot do all the work for you!
Take Order Queries
For another example, let’s say your customer is interested in buying a specific item but isn’t sure of their color and size preferences. They might message your chatbot something like:
“Hey, chatbot! Can you recommend this product to me?”
The chatbot would then ask a series of questions to better help the customer make a decision. Questions may include: “What color do you want?” “What size are you looking for?” “Would you prefer this item in cotton or silk materials?”
Without e-commerce chatbots, you would spend valuable minutes manually taking down all their order details. That takes time! With e-commerce chatbots, you can start taking orders within minutes.
But What Do They Do? Like, Specifically?
With preprogrammed responses and machine learning, chatbots can do wonders for your business. They can respond to customer concerns or proactively seek leads. Chatbots can promote deals and products, or they can act as a living FAQ. Bots can fetch order information or other data from databases. The result? Instant, relevant responses. Customers can immediately find out what time the match is playing or when the promotion ends.
What’s even better is that chatbots can collect data from customers while talking to them. Emails addresses, demographics, or psychographics are linked to specific customers. Since chatbots function on Facebook Messenger, each customer arrives with their Facebook profile. Profile lists are much more extensive than email lists. Profiles contain locations, interests, friends, event attendance, and more.
Chatbots can be used within various mediums; SMS, messengers, and website chat windows are all fair game. Most of all, chatbots are consistent. They always respond patiently and precisely to the brand. They don’t get frustrated with customers for having to answer the same question over and over again.
E-Commerce King Amazon Sees Value in Chatbots
Amazon emphasizes certain features in chatbots that help them improve efficiency and profit. The E-commerce King also sees broader applications for chatbots. They name next-gen tech like deep learning, text-to-speech, and speech recognition as valuable.
Efficiency Through Automation
Amazon outlines three essential benefits. The first is efficiency by using automation. Amazon recognizes the power of automating complex processes and, especially, repetitive tasks. Chatbots reduce the time required to execute a strategy and make business more efficient. Criticisms aside, if any company understands efficiency, it’s Amazon.
Flexibility is the second prominent plus. Chatbots can adapt to natural language. In plain English, that means you don’t have to talk like a robot to be understood by one. You can use a chatbot the same way you address your iPhone through Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, or Google Home. Chatbots mold to the user and task. Even embedding chatbots in day-to-day workflows is not a problem. Internal corporate matters are also more efficient with chatbots. Typing a question into a chatbot to search for a document is faster than interrupting your colleagues. Chatbots help you leave time for the most important collaborations. Discuss ideas, pitches, and make decisions; let chatbots answer the easy questions.
E-Commerce Chatbots Change Online Experiences
Online customer experiences demand live interactions. Plain website pages are not enough to provide a seamless and “wowing” customer experience. Chatbots are live, immediate, and effective with natural language processing. They help the customer feel taken care of each step of the way. Chatbots provide better customer service than phone calls or emails. Online experiences encourage transactions in almost every retail industry. That’s why e-commerce chatbots are valuable to online businesses. E-commerce chatbots handle customer concerns and inquiries. They help convert browsers into buyers by the way they collect the information needed for successful transactions.
Nowadays, customers have higher expectations because of how e-commerce evolved. The ease with which customers can find and buy products affects the experience they expect from businesses. Instant customer support is the new norm. Advances in AI are making that reality possible. Chatbots are a two-way street, however. The ease with which customers can retrieve data also allows chatbots to collect data. Social platform data collection techniques are coming to e-commerce. With that transfer, customers will expect tailored experiences.
The most effective uses of AI to aid customer interactions are those that feel native to the customer. Messaging apps are natural for us to use. Most people with mobile phones understand what text messages are and use them regularly. Chatbots are a more natural way for customers to interact with businesses. Email campaigns may reach the wrong customers at the wrong time. But chatbots minimize that risk.
An Investment That Pays-Off
By this point, it’s clear. Chatbots are an investment that pays off. Automation of customer interactions reduces the cost of operations. Chatbots reduce the loss of sales due to customer frustrations. They reduce the load and demand for customer support services. Support teams can work on building the chatbot services and further automation. Chatbots generate leads so that businesses can acquire more customers. Customers that are returning to a site or leave a shopping cart can be followed up on. Websites using chatbots automate personalized sales. They use information about the customer to sell specific products to them.
Some customers still don’t understand how to use your site for every in-depth tutorial or blog post. Chatbots can walk customers through the buying process. And no, E-commerce chatbots are not the end of customer support; some customers still need a human touch. Chatbots are trained to give the same answer to every similar problem. But some cases are an opportunity for a favor to a customer or a bend of the rules. Hiding behind automated responses isn’t the final blueprint for e-commerce success. Customers still want to know that there is a human behind the brand.
Above all, chatbots reduce the amount of work that customers have to do to make a purchase. And they reduce the work required that businesses need to help a customer find what they need.
Chatbots: The Future of Customer Experiences
Customer experience is everything. With online reviews, 1-5 star ratings, and social media, you can’t hide a bad reputation. E-commerce chatbots help you provide a better experience and save resources at the same time. You no longer have to field hundreds of chats and calls at the same time. Automation is the future. If you’d like to learn more about chatbots, we invite you to take a look at our extensive blog.