Introduction to Live Chat

Primarily, live chat is a conversational chat with a human, just like how we chat, text, or send messages through SMS and social sites. It’s different from a chatbot because ecommerce chatbots are programmed with codes and are keyword based. They interact conversationally with voice recognition or by pressing buttons. Live chat is often used as a second option whenever a chatbot encounters a question beyond its knowledge.

The Downsides of Live Chat

If there are advantages there are also its counterparts, the disadvantages: Scripted Responses, Bad Impressions, Maintenance and 24/7 Monitoring.

1. Maintenance and 24/7 Monitoring

An agent positioned for livechat cannot even take a few minutes of break because a customer might come in through the live chat. So agents must take shifts, or whenever there’s a need for a brief break, someone must be there as a temporary replacement to monitor the livechat.

2. Scripted Responses

Livechat is often as uniform as a chatbot would be. There are prepared scripts for agents to use as responses to FAQs or frequently asked questions from customers. Statistics say that 29% of consumers find scripted responses frustrating because these scripts may appear insincere and repetitive.

3. Bad Impression

When an agent takes a few seconds of bathroom break and a customer happens to come in through the live chat, this will make the customer wait for a response. They expect someone to always be there behind the screen to answer their inquiries, so this will end up giving the customer a bad impression that the line is unattended.

Introduction to Ecommerce Chatbots

Chatbots are programs which help in simulating engagements and/or interactions with customers and visitors to a site or online shop. They are automatically based on a set of conditions and triggers, such as typing, clicking, or speaking.

The concept of a chatbot has been around as early as the 1960s, so it is nothing new. They are now being used with online or ecommerce businesses recently. Online shopping continues to grow.

Additional Facts Regarding Ecommerce Chatbots

Here are some facts to support how applying chatbots to ecommerce websites is abruptly growing:

  • According to a Facebook survey more than 50% of customers say that they are more likely to shop with businesses that they can easily connect with through chat.
  • According to Gartner, a leading research and advisory company for businesses, “By 2020, 85% of our engagement with businesses will be done without interacting with another human. Instead, we’ll be using self-service options and chatbots.”
  • According to an Oracle survey, “80% of businesses said they currently use or are planning to use chatbots by 2020.”
  • Additionally, over 59% of millennials and 60% of Gen Xers in the United States have experienced interactions with chatbots.

There are different types of chatbots. Examples include AI chatbots, livechat supported by chatbots, LeadBots, eCommerce chatbots, lead generation chatbots and support chatbots. These chatbots are also commonly used in ecommerce, especially in the field of conversational commerce.

What is Conversational Commerce?

Conversational commerce is a form of eCommerce where sellers and buyers interact or communicate through live or AI representatives and assistants. These representatives and assistants help customers explore their site or shop and give services with their purchases, in order to make a clean and successful transaction.

Conversational commerce makes it easier to get the information you need about the products you plan on buying. Also, it aids in helping you decide whether you should buy the product or not. It allows brands or sellers to have the opportunity to give their customers instant and personalized advice, which contributes to customer satisfaction. It also affects the kind of relationship the seller has with their customers.

Conversational commerce helps the brand sell more since every part of the conversation can be optimized and personalized for the best possible outcome. More purchases benefits the seller as well as improves customer satisfaction.

In what ways are Ecommerce Chatbots beneficial for Ecommerce Businesses?

Here are some things chatbots can do for your ecommerce websites:

1. Instant Customer Service

Providing client assistance is the primary need of an e-commerce website. Customer service centers are a must, but there is no need for human assistance when smart chatbots can be used. They can operate 24/7 meaning they can engage with any customer any time of the day making customers more inclined on using them for information. Fast and responsive customer service makes customers come back.

2. Generating Leads from the High Quantum of Website Traffic

Chatbots are not used just for customer services, they can also be used as an outlet for marketing and sales within the website. Chatbots can enhance lead generation by answering questions and pushing a website visitor further down the funnel. Customers can interact with it leading to more transactions.

3. Scalability

High traffic within an ecommerce website is a major challenge. This mostly occurs on holidays or special occasions like Black Friday and pre-Christmas. Chatbots are much more reliable handling these kinds of dilemmas. Why? Chatbots can stick on a specific mundane routine answering the same queries which is usually the case, while human agents can handle the more complex inquiries. This paves the way for a company to save its time and finances.

4. Swift Responses from Ecommerce Chatbots

Engaging the customers to your website is key to gain attraction and profit. Providing a chatbot that can rapidly respond to their questions or inquiries will keep customers engaged with your website. More customers coming to and being satisfied with your website will translate to better sales

5. Answering Repeated Questions

Chatbots can handle basic tasks faster such as payment, shipping inquiries, and grievances. This makes customers speed up their purchases. It can also function as the frontline for human agents by answering the most basic questions while providing good recommendations and quality customer service.

6. 24/7 Availability of Ecommerce Chatbots

Having a chatbot for your ecommerce website means your online store is accessible at any time of the day. Since chatbots work around the clock, the usefulness and effectiveness are worth the investment. They reduce waiting time for your customers, making them want to come back for another transaction.

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Greg Ahern

Greg Ahern Founder and President of Ometrics® is a fanatic about conversion rate optimization, AI chatbots and lead generation. Greg has been a successful Internet entrepreneur since 1994. He speaks at conferences and webinars and has built a number of internet businesses, including web marketing, web development and internet lead generation, which have been successfully acquired. Greg is the Denver Chapter Leader for the Digital Analytics Association. You can follow Greg on Twitter @gregahern and join his CRO Hacks Groups on Facebook and Slack.
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