What is Conversational Commerce?

conversational commerce

Conversational commerce is the ability for retailers to interact with their customers via online conversational channels. This enables customers to communicate with brands or retailers via live video shopping, live chat, and social media channels. Conversational commerce is significant in e-commerce because it opens the dialogue between customer and retailer, resulting in more established relationships. The use of conversational channels results in more natural and humanistic conversations.

This article will cover the following:

The importance of conversational commerce

Conversational commerce gives e-commerce companies a one-to-one sales channel and customers the personalised service they now expect from brands via messaging apps. Conversational commerce drives results:

  • 91% of consumers are more likely to shop with brands that recognise, remember, and provide relevant offers and product recommendations
  • 73% of customers consider experience an important part of their buying decision. But, only 49% of customers say companies provide good customer service

Conversational commerce can transform customer service into a digital experience; it allows retail staff to directly communicate with a potential customer, whether that be over live video or online chat. An important feature of conversational commerce is that the interaction is completely initiated by the customer; this is because they value their shopping experience and want that humanistic help online. Check out this report on what people value the most in their customer experience:

conversational commerce - customer experience

Source: PwC Future of Customer Service Experience Survey

According to PwC, the majority of consumers value efficiency, convenience, friendly service, and knowledgeable service when shopping online. The biggest connector between all these experiences? Human touch – developing genuine relationships by giving employees the tools they need to improve client experiences while also making technology feel more humanistic. People are becoming more and more devoted to the businesses, brands, names, and technology that continuously deliver outstanding value with the least amount of hassle or strain.

Types of Conversational Commerce

  • Live video shopping
    • A way for businesses to showcase, and eventually market, their products to live customers who can engage with them in a real-time, video-based purchasing experience
  • Live chat
    • Allows automation of answers to common questions. These could be with the assistance of AI chatbots, or a human customer service team
  • Social media
    • Messaging apps such as WhatsApp, and social media platforms such as Twitter and Instagram, are used by sales experts to directly chat to customers away from the retailer’s websites. According to a Publicis and Twitter study, “92% of people surveyed actively seek out comments about brands, products, or services on social. More importantly, 68% said their impression of a brand was changed as a result of experiencing brand conversation”

The benefits of implementing conversational commerce

Depending on the conversational platform in use, each channel has its own benefits for both the retailer and customer alike.

conversational commerce

  • Improved customer satisfaction

    • Whether that be using chatbots or live agents, brands can learn more about their customer’s needs when interacting with them directly. However, chatbots are not always able to handle complex customer inquiries or provide the level of empathy and understanding that a human customer service representative can. To balance the convenience and efficiency of chatbots with the personal touch of human interaction, many businesses opt for a live video shopping solution. This allows customers to receive quick answers to simple questions from a retail expert, while also having the option to connect face-to-face with a human representative for more complex enquiries. This results in greater customer satisfaction, and in turn increased NPS scores for the retailers
  • Increased convenience

    • Although all forms of conversational commerce channels can connect customers with retail staff in real-time efficiently, live video shopping provides the most online convenience. In a single session, the customer can see the product from different angles, receive real-time advice from a knowledgeable representative, and complete the entire shopping process, from browsing to purchasing, in one session. With live chat and social media, however, these channels are mostly used for answering quick and simple questions over text
  • Reduce abandoned shopping baskets

    • Live video shopping is the best conversational commerce platform to utilise when aiming to reduce abandoned online shopping baskets. This is because it provides customers with a more personal and interactive shopping experience, allowing them to ask questions and receive real-time information about the product. Live video shopping can also help to build trust and increase brand loyalty, as customers are able to see and engage with real people representing the brand. This is not possible with simple text chat
  • Access to customer data

    • This data can help businesses better understand customer behaviour and preferences, inform marketing strategies, and improve customer experience. While chatbots can provide a wealth of customer data, human interactions can provide the valuable context and insights that chatbots may not be able to capture. In fact, 63% of customers are more willing to offer more personal information if they have a great experience


Why live video shopping is the best practice for conversational commerce

conversational commerce

Although live chat, whether that be human or AI generated, and social media channels are seeing benefits in convenience and access to customer data, there are several reasons why live video shopping can be considered the best practice for conversational commerce.

As seen in the PwC report, friendly and knowledgeable services are the most valued parts of a customer’s online shopping experience. With live video shopping, these services are more readily available for the customer, reason being that they can see the retail expert face-to-face in a live call and receive personalised answers to their queries straight away. This leads to a number of advantages:

  • Trust building

    • The personal touch of seeing a real human on the other side of the conversation builds trust between the brand and customer
  • Increased engagement

    • Customers ask questions and receive immediate answers in an immersive online shopping experience, as opposed to being one of many awaiting a reply from a brand over text
  • Enhanced product demonstration

    • Beyond the retail expert is the product itself that the customer wants to know about: the salesperson can highlight specific features and benefits, and customers can see the product in action, which can lead to a better understanding of the product and increased likelihood of making a purchase

Furthering this, live one-to-one video shopping platforms such as Confer With are utilising the personal engagement of conversational commerce and taking it one step further. In a live one-to-one video call between a customer and retail expert, the salesperson is solely focused on one customer and their needs, as opposed to spreading their attention to many viewers in a standard live video shopping scenario. This means that they can gain a deeper customer insight into their needs, preferences, and online shopping behaviours, which can go beyond the purchasing decisions.

Additionally, live one-to-one video shopping allows for upselling and cross-selling of products. This is because the salesperson can provide personalised recommendations based on the customer’s needs and interests. For example, if a customer is interested in a new camera, the salesperson can ask about their photography experience, what type of photography they are interested in, and what their budget is. Based on this information, the salesperson can then suggest the best camera for their needs and answer any questions they may have. In addition, the salesperson can also offer suggestions for complementary products, such as lenses, tripods, or camera bags, that can enhance the customer’s photography experience. This can help increase the overall value of the sale and provide the customer with a complete solution for their photography needs.

Key Takeaways

Businesses that adopt live video shopping as part of their conversational commerce strategy can differentiate themselves from the competition and provide a unique and valuable shopping experience for their customers. By focusing on the customer’s needs and experience, live video shopping can help build customer loyalty and drive long-term business success.

Share this post

Transform your business with Confer With

Learn more about

Transform your business with Confer With

Related Posts