The adoption of chatbots is still on the rise in many domains. For instance, a new report from Juniper Research has found that the adoption of chatbots across the retail, banking and healthcare sectors will realize business cost savings of $11 billion annually by 2023. No surprise that Gartner predicts that, soon enough, companies will spend more on chatbots than on mobile apps. But are chatbots also so impactful in eCommerce? What are the benefits of chatbots for eCommerce? Is it really worth adding a bot to your online shop? If so, why we don’t see a more massive use of these digital salesmen in eCommerce websites?. This post clarifies all these aspects. With the unprecedented growth of the global eCommerce business (it’s predicted to reach more than $6.5 trillion by 2023) you must be ready to compete with all the other shops popping up. And chatbots will be your secret weapon!
Benefits of chatbots in eCommerce
Did you know that eCommerce bots can help you in the entire sale process, from product discovery to check out and after-sales support? Let’s review some key benefits of adding a bot to your shop, including some that may not be so obvious 🙂
Benefits of chatbots for customer support
Let the bots take care of your customer support. They will save you time and money that you can use to grow your business. Every hour you don’t need to spend in low-level repetitive support activities can be devoted to growing your business!.
- Chatbots work 24/7. And never take holidays. They are the perfect employee and have your back covered while you focus your energy on managing your business instead of answering repetitive questions. Avoid losing customers who want an immediate response instead of just waiting for you to email back in a few hours, when they won’t be on your website anymore.
- Chatbots never get angry. We all run into annoying customers from time to time. That always asks the same questions and never ends up buying. Or just pure trolls trying to get under our skin. Chatbots will not get stressed and will always be polite even if they need to answer the same question again and again.
- Chatbots take care of your FAQs. You can easily train a bot to answer your most frequently asked questions. Following the Pareto principle, we know that most clients end up asking the same questions.
- Chatbots speak any language. I bet you don’t. So chatbots enable you to serve customers from all around the world.
- Chatbots know the client. They go beyond generic FAQs and answer clients based on their purchase history. For instance, chatbots can answer questions on the order status or alert customers when new products, related to those the client has bought before, are available.
- Chatbots are experts in all areas. Sales? Shipping? Payment methods?. A chatbot can be trained on all these topics. No need to keep forwarding questions to different people in your organization based on the question topic. Chatbots centralize all your customer support.
Not everybody wants to chat with a human. Shop owners often assume visitors will always prefer to speak to a human than with a bot. Not always true. Think about introverts or people that are not yet fluent in your language. They will avoid talking to a 🧍 but will be happy to chat with a 🤖
Benefits of chatbots for sales
You are probably the best salesman in your organization. But I’m pretty sure you’ve better things to do than looking at the screen waiting for a potential customer to show up online. Let chatbots manage the sales process for you!. They will help you sell more while doing less.
- Chatbots help customers search for products in a more natural way. The sooner a client finds the product he needs, the more chances you have to close the sale. And the search process can go further than pure keyword-based search and instead offer a more interactive experience
- Chatbots recommend products. A chatbot can suggest the products you are more interested in promoting. Or it could recommend those that are on sale right now. Or those that can be shipped to the country of the visitor. Or…
- Chatbots offer personalized sales advice. A good chatbot knows the purchase history of the customer and can offer personalized sales suggestions based on that.
- Chatbots detect whether the customer is angry and can adapt to that. Using sentiment analysis techniques a bot could, for instance, shorten the sales process to avoid losing the sale when it detects the client is getting impatient.
- Chatbots upsell and cross-sell based on what the client is buying. Chatbots can proactively react and bring to the attention of the customer products related to the one he is looking at.
- Chatbots engage with visitors leaving the shop. Most visitors leave your site without buying anything. Chatbots can engage them and try to make them stay with personalized offers.
Benefits of eCommerce chatbots that will surprise you
All the points we have discussed so far are really important. But there are a couple of side benefits of adding a chatbot to your website that are also worth discussing and that you, probably, didn’t have in mind.
- Chatbots simplify the maintenance of your site. Until now you had to install a plugin for product search, another for products recommendation, another for the FAQs, another for contacting you… A single chatbot can take care of these tasks and help you get rid of several unnecessary plugins. And with them all their updating, bug fixing, and maintenance issues. This can also improve the overall efficiency and performance of your site!
- Chatbots help you improve your shop. At the very least, a chatbot dashboard reports on the most common questions the bot got. For instance, you could use this information to detect pages that need to be revamped as they generate tons of questions.
- Chatbots help you detect new opportunities to exploit. As important as the conversations the bot had with your visitors are the questions the bot didn’t manage to understand. These “fails” will give precious information on questions you had not prepared for. This could be referring to missing FAQs that you should add to improve the clarity of the site. But, they could also refer to products (or product variations) that people are looking for and you’re not still offering!. Use the chatbot to know what you should be selling!
- Chatbots offer consistent answers. You don’t want people getting different answers for the same question. This is really difficult to achieve if humans are the ones answering the questions. But a chatbot will not let you down. Same question? Same answer!.
Why we don’t yet see a chatbot in every online shop
You may be wondering, why so many eCommerce sites do not have yet a chatbot? From the above list, it’s clear that every eCommerce site should have a digital salesman assisting the shop owner in all the phases of the sale cycle. This is especially true for small and medium online shops. And those are the ones that need the bots the most as they cannot afford to hire customer support to assist visitors via a live chat solution.
The reason is price and time. Right now, building a great chatbot implies either paying a chatbot agency to develop it for you (at a price of a minimum of five figures, which makes it too pricey for many online shops) or taking the time to do it yourself. The latter seems a reasonable option, as right now there are many chatbot tools that offer nice user interfaces to create bots without coding (e.g. we even offer a solution to define your chatbot in Excel) but people underestimate the time it takes to create the bot and end up with a very poorly designed bot that will scare away your clients. Even worse, the bot will need to be updated every time you change your product catalog, making this whole effort unsustainable.
Xatkit is a radical new approach to this problem. Xatkit offers pretrained bots able to automatically read and understand your catalog of products. So, you don’t need to do anything at all to get a bot able to start assisting your visitors from the moment it gets installed on your site. This is what we call a no-work chatbot development approach. Our training converts our bots in eCommerce experts. They come with built-in conversations typical of eCommerce sites. The following figure shows one of them, covering questions on order statuses. But there are many more available.
You can configure all the bot messages if you wish so. And, of course, you can also add your own FAQs. But all this is optional. You can also choose to do nothing at all and just enjoy all the benefits of having Xatkit on your site. All for a much cheaper price than hiring a chatbot agency or than hiring more employees for customer support.
Thanks to Xatkit, there is no excuse. You can get an expert eCommerce chatbot right away. Get yours!. You can try it for free!.
Get your own eCommerce chatbot