“A real conversation always contains an invitation. You are inviting another person to reveal herself or himself to you, to tell you who they are or what they want.” - David Whyte
That is also what a perfect sales pitch is. For decades, a sales transaction is a conversation between two people. The buyer and the seller. If you want to sell, you need to excel in conversation. Although e-commerce changed the way of purchasing, conversation is still vital. Because, at the end, human beings don’t change much. That’s why we are still looking for intimacy in conversations that is lost in digital commerce. Unsurprisingly, a study from “IT in Practice” reports that 27% of companies focusing on growth rank customer intimacy as their main objective in order to achieve more revenue.
The personalized and targeted conversation has a key role to bring back the intimacy that we’ve lost in digital commerce. The retailer’s reason for being is selling and selling is conversating. E- commerce retailers ought to intensify their focus on conversational commerce as it is what will make them upsell, cross-sell or simply sell. There is a math to psychology and a psychology to persuasion which means a persuasive conversation follows a methodology. Live, bot or hybrid, there are codes the conversationist should follow to boost sales and reinforce customer loyalty.
When you stick to the code, clients will stick with you.
Code 1: Aim to Make Friends Not Sells.
As Dale Carnegie says, “The secret to success is being interested in other people”. Be interested in the consumer. Learn who they are. Learn what they want. Do not tell them what you are selling. Tell them what is in it for them. Make real conversation.
Asking too many questions can give the impression that you are clueless. Instead, make the buyer open up. Listening is very important for healthy conversation but a seller who talks too little may lose control. Build and keep the balance.
Your product or service may be the most beneficial, the smartest or the prettiest but that means nothing if the client does not agree. And the best way to make people agree with you is to make them think it was their idea in the first place.
Code 2: Answer the Needs.
The first universal principle of influence is reciprocity! Nobody likes to be told what is good for them but everybody needs guidance. When you answer questions, the asker owes you. Provide the client with the information he or she needs. What starts with a simple question from the buyer can end up in a life long relationship.
Answer questions through a chat platform using live chat, a chatbot or hybrid solutions. Bots can be as wise as an encyclopedia. They can be thought to provide relevant information, offer more and make suggestions hence affecting the buyer’s decision process. A live representative can always get help from a bot with super memory. A hybrid system can be friendly, helpful and super informed.
Code 3: Make It Easy!
The best offer you can make to customers is time and comfort. People buy online cause they want to reach a lot of options in little time. Offer the client a solution to their problems or the objects of their desire not what you want to sell. Help them figure out what they want easily and in no time.
Provide a specific number of options based on what the client wants. What creates the magic is understanding those wants. Bots are very quick learners who never forget. They can save time and with their expertise in buyer behavior, facilitate the searching and decision-making process for the client. Offering an assistant to take care of the customer while he or she is online with countless options at his or her fingertips is everything.
Code 4: Solve problems.
A seller offers solutions with the products or services he sells. However, deciding what to buy and how to buy can become a problem itself for the buyer. The winning seller would be the one that reaches out. The client may hit the wrong key, be unfamiliar with the transaction system, having a technical problem or maybe just hesitant.
All he or she needs is someone to help. By placing a live chat icon in the right place in the right time can save millions of sales that were doomed to be lost somewhere in the shopping process.
Code 5: Connect with People.
Connecting with the buyer before the purchase allows the seller to expand the shopping basket of the buyer through cross-selling or upselling as well as reducing the chances of dealing with customer complaints or returns in the future. Buyers demand assistance and assistants can use their conversation skills to inform the buyer about campaigns, relevant products, different options and so much more.
Bots can be programmed to gather and use data from previous purchases or customer databases. Every time a bot interacts with a customer, it becomes wiser. Bots have unlimited learning capabilities so they provide countless opportunities.
Code 6: Inquire After People.
Friends are forever. So are customers if you could become their friends. What keeps relationships warm and long-term is conversation. Keep talking to your clients even and especially after they buy from you. Let them know your real concern was to meet their demands not sell them your stuff. Use chatbots that request customer feedback. The information they will gather and the sympathy your brand will get will change everything.
Code 7: Know and Love Thy Customer.
Chatbots can be programmed and live representatives can be trained to deliver key marketing messages to the buyers. They can make the client feel welcome and familiar in your online store just like an assistant would in a brick and mortar shop. Online or offline, who does not want to be recognized and/or feel like a VIP? Bots and online chat representatives can deliver personalized ads to the clients that feel more honest and sincere in other words “not like ads”. Conversational commerce can be the most powerful marketing tool you will use.
Code 8: Join conversations
With Facebook’s built-in advertising platform you will not need to wait for the buyer to come to your website but will be able to appear magically like the gene from the bottle when the client makes a wish. Hear out the buyers when they are socializing online and come up with your miracle! When people are complaining about their unhealthy diet or the pounds they have recently put on; a gym or a health bar that reaches out would be most welcome! You will make instant friends when you join in the conversation with a gift, a clue or a solution.
So it is time to ask yourselves: How do you communicate with your old, new and potential clients? Are you friends or just acquaintances?