What is Conversational Commerce? Simply put it is the act of marketing or promoting products by means of interaction. Conversational commerce has become a vital component of e-business and many companies now rely on it to reach their customer base. Below are some key definitions to help you better understand:
Conversational Commerce is a combination of in-store personalization, virtual personalization and personalized selling. In other words, it is an interactive process that enables the interaction between a customer/user and a company/website. It refers to the ability to personalize a product or service to enhance a user’s experience while browsing or buying. The process includes real-time personalization, in-store personalization, and remote personalization. In this case the in-store personalization can take the form of accepting applications for purchases; integrate these into the purchasing process without requiring the user to log in; and allow the browsing and purchasing of items from a web page without the need to provide usernames or passwords.
Now that you know what Conversational Commerce is it’s time to look at the term in a different light. The buzz is all about conversational commerce software specifically designed for business to business interactions. Some examples of this include Conversational Software International (CSI), Paralegal Work Station, and Paralegal Plus. Of course the two companies mentioned are not the only ones. There are many others including: Adtran, Chitika, Fastload, iConverse, KompoZer, Mediocre, NetSuite, Pure Chat, Sage Line, Site Meter, TargetPoint, UniteCommerce, and more.
The use of conversational commerce software has been growing steadily to meet consumer expectations of increased convenience and efficiency when shopping online. Consumers expect to be able to quickly find the product they want and have the information they need with minimal effort and access to multiple payment gateways. Companies have been responding to consumer desires by developing solutions that will allow consumers to conduct business more easily and efficiently online. They are also looking to consumers as the reason for the growth in this industry. As consumers become more familiar with using online tools such as buying online, they will likely continue to gain more trust in these gateways and will start to see the benefits of interacting with these businesses.
By allowing consumers to search, browse and purchase products from a single interface consumers can accomplish two things: one, improve their shopping experience by eliminating the numerous steps required by traditional ecommerce, and two, drive down the cost of running an online business by reducing marketing costs. In turn, as more businesses realize how easy it can be for consumers to conduct business with them and make purchases through conversational commerce software they will likely invest in developing more attractive websites and engaging their target markets in even greater ways. With this additional investment in time and money it is expected that ecommerce spending will increase in unison with consumer spending.
For any business that wishes to participate in Conversational AI commerce technology it is important to understand what tools are available to them to ensure optimal participation and conversion rates. The key to participating in these conversations is having tools available that allow customers to communicate with businesses online in the same way that they would with other online strangers. These tools should include the ability to post a message, which automatically sends an email to all recipients on their contact list. In addition, a website containing multiple forums where customers can voice their opinions and discuss their products is also beneficial. The ultimate goal is for customers to engage with businesses on a social media platforms similar to Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ and for businesses to implement conversational commerce features on their website where customers can leave reviews and recommendations.
Another feature that will benefit most brands is a brand’s ability to purchase advertising space online. While this will be of little benefit to smaller brands, larger brands will have a greater impact on customers when they can purchase space on popular social media platforms such as Twitter. Twitter allows users to broadcast their conversations to their thousands of followers, which creates an unparalleled opportunity for large brands to engage with their consumers on a more personal level. The power of buying advertising space can be the difference between a successful conversational commerce campaign and a brand that simply sinks without noticeable results.
By buying advertising space on a platform such as Twitter a brand can engage directly with consumers, giving them the opportunity to voice their opinions and discuss their products in a highly personalized manner. With conversational commerce brands not only have the ability to improve customer engagement and loyalty but also gain a strong competitive advantage against smaller competitors. As the future of advertising continues to evolve into a more interactive platform, brands that properly harness the power of messaging will see long-term benefits.