Mobile use is on a steady rise, with an increasing number of people using smartphones for everything from web research to messaging apps on a daily basis. According to Wired, the number of smartphone users is expected to reach 5.9 billion in fewer than five years. While many brands have long integrated customer service into their mobile customer engagement through mobile sites or brand apps, the surge in mobile use has led to tremendous new opportunities for marketing and sales. Shopify found that over 50% of e-commerce traffic is now driven by mobile devices, while Adweek predicted that online pre-purchase product research will result in $1.8 trillion in retail sales by 2017. In this new era of conversational commerce, customers and brands are engaging with one another on familiar channels but in new ways, transforming the mobile customer experience altogether. Here are six ways conversational commerce is changing the future of mobile customer engagement.
In recent times, many brands have been optimizing mobile customer engagement to meet growing demand. Now, conversational commerce is making mobile optimization the rule rather than the exception. In addition to traditional SMS, brand apps, and brand websites optimized for mobile, messaging apps have swiftly become a prime channel for great customer experiences. Many brands are turning to messaging apps to provide customers with more personalized, richer experiences. Customers are able to interact with brands on a deeper level, researching product information, making purchases, and requesting service within a single app with the help of bots and human agents.
While many customers like to research products on their smartphones, purchasing is another story. According to MoPowered, 30% of mobile shoppers abandon a transaction if the customer experience is not optimized for mobile. What does this mean for conversational commerce? As more brands make it possible for customers to research and purchase within a single transaction (through a messaging app or other mobile channel), sales and customer satisfaction are sure to grow and potential customers are more enticed to connect with brands they may not have considered before.
One critical success factor in conversational commerce is that it’s simply so easy and natural for customers to use. Since messaging is such a prominent aspect of many people’s daily lives, brands are counting on this fact to deepen their customer engagement. Customers may receive targeted marketing offers through push notifications that are tailored to their needs. Sales transactions don’t need to happen across multiple channels. Agents and automation combined offer more in-depth and personalized service than ever. The ease of conversational commerce will empower more customers to turn to mobile devices for one-stop service and shopping.
Conversational commerce is not just about customers connecting conveniently with brands. Ongoing messaging and in-depth interactions make it possible for brands to build relationships with their customers and turn them into long-term advocates. As customers feel more appreciated, service becomes personal, and the shopping experience becomes more appealing, customers are more likely to advocate for the businesses that deliver on these points.
In the past, mobile customer service did not always mean saving time. According to Strangeloop Networks, 57% of mobile customers abandon a brand website if they have to wait three seconds for a page to load. Conversational commerce strives to eliminate the barriers to great service and easy purchase by offering a seamless experience on a single channel and on the go. Mobile customers will save time and love the efficiency of their experiences.
Businesses know that accountability is key to long-term customer loyalty. While many already strive to optimize their channels for better service, conversational commerce makes this point imperative. The more brands are responsive to customers when engaging in conversational commerce, the more customers will be confident in brands. Messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger hold brands accountable by displaying responsiveness badges and typical response times for customers to see. In the increasingly competitive domain of conversational commerce, the most efficient and accountable brands are the most likely ones to win customer loyalty.Conversational commerce is redefining mobile customer engagement by making it easy, efficient, and appealing for all. As a global leader in cloud-based contact center software solutions for customer service and sales, Vocalcom chose to integrate Facebook Messenger, Telegram, WeChat, Viber, Kik, and conversational SMS into its cloud contact center platform, evolving into a conversational commerce platform for the future of great customer experiences. Conversational interactions through text messaging, in-app messaging, and messaging apps allow customers to engage with brands in real-time or asynchronously through a single thread, offering a data-rich context that enables customers to switch easily between channels in a single interaction for true customer satisfaction. Currently, 40% of companies have seen a call deflection rate when shifting customers to SMS, and 23% have plans to add it this year, resulting in more than 60% of all contact centers offering SMS support by the end of 2016. Learn more about the Vocalcom conversational commerce platform for optimum customer experiences.
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