How two-way chatbot messaging boosts customer engagement
By Ziv Fass, Package.ai
In the fast-paced world of retail, the tiniest window of opportunity can make a big difference.
Imagine every time a customer receives an SMS containing delivery updates, product information or exclusive promotions. This presents a unique chance to build deeper relationships, foster brand loyalty and ultimately drive more sales.
While furniture and appliance retailers have embraced mobile messaging to complement traditional communication methods, there’s a catch: Most still rely on outdated, one-way mobile push notifications that offer no room for customer feedback. This leaves customers feeling unheard and yearning for the convenience and interactivity of messaging apps on their phones.
The Need to Give Customers a Voice
For retailers and their customers, breaking away from the monotony of one-sided notifications is crucial. Pushing messages without the possibility of genuine conversation is like the sound of “one-hand clapping” — it lacks the spark needed to engage customers when they crave a voice. Not surprisingly, this approach often results in lower delivery confirmations and higher rates of failed deliveries.
Today’s consumers demand an active and participatory role in their shopping journey. The days of relying solely on phone calls, which are resource-intensive and often ineffective, or outdated push notifications are long gone. Forward-thinking retailers at the forefront of customer engagement strategies are revolutionizing their business models by embracing real-time messaging. They see the potential of two-way mobile messaging to transform the shopping experience by enabling deeper and more meaningful interactions with their customers.
Enabling Fluid Conversations
The power of two-way messaging lies in its ability to facilitate fluid conversations, where customers can engage with retailers on their own terms. Imagine your customers instantly confirming or rescheduling delivery times, or even interacting directly with delivery drivers to make last-minute adjustments. By creating channels for dialogue, retailers will witness a surge in delivery confirmations and a decline in failed deliveries, all while empowering customers and optimizing resources. As vans leave distribution centers loaded with items confirmed for delivery, the risk of undelivered packages plummets. Retailers operate more efficiently and drivers and dispatch teams experience reduced stress.
The end result? A win-win situation where customers receive an enhanced delivery service, and retailers benefit from satisfied customers who become brand advocates and repeat buyers.
Supercharging Messaging with AI and Automation
But how can retailers cope with the increased volume of customer interactions in real-time? This is where artificial intelligence (AI) and automation step in, becoming indispensable tools for messaging optimization. By employing a powerful blend of chatbots and human interactions, retailers can seamlessly navigate two-way conversations across the entire customer journey, from sales to fulfillment to customer service.
Chatbots, such as Package.ai’s “Jenny,” for example, can help retailers instantly understand and respond to customer messages. From pre-purchase inquiries to delivery scheduling, warranty sales and marketing promotions, chatbots can handle it all. They know precisely when to initiate a conversation, guide customers to take action and when to transfer the interaction to human colleagues. This efficient division of labor frees up staff to focus on complex inquiries, resulting in a faster, personalized, engaging and effortless customer experience.
Strengthening Customer Relationships
Customers tend to treat sophisticated chatbots as a genuine human conversation partner. They become a trusted companion throughout their journey. They come back to engage further to ask more questions, just as they would with a human customer service agent. This empowers retailers to build and strengthen relationships with their customers by communicating with them fluidly when assistance is needed, making a significant impact on the customer experience.
In an era of decreasing customer loyalty and lower levels of customer engagement, it’s high time for retailers to revamp their messaging strategies, leveraging the power of AI and automation to unlock the potential of two-way conversations. Now is the time for retailers to embrace customized, personalized messaging, to connect more deeply with their customers, drive sales and elevate the retail experience to unprecedented heights.
Ziv Fass is the CEO and co-founder of Package.ai, a BrandSource vendor partner whose customer engagement platform has been a boon to furniture and appliance members. To learn more or book a demo, click here.