Real-time communication is the standard that customers expect eCommerce brands to adhere to — given the convenience of innovations in communications technology these days. When chat and SMS options are available, customers will always choose these channels to reach out to a company, and they almost always expect to receive an immediate response from a real person.
Automated email, chat, and SMS responses are still acceptable for some customers — but only to a certain extent. Most consumers no longer have the patience for canned responses and the multiple wait times in between. Whether they’re reaching out to ask a question about a product or service, request assistance navigating your website, or have a problem with their order resolved, customers demand prompt attention from an actual human representative.
Timely and genuine conversations over the internet or through SMS are realistic and justified expectations. eCommerce brands that are not able to meet these expectations pretty soon lose out to competitors who can. Because delivering genuine and real-time communications is doable, and if you can’t do it, your customers will not hesitate to switch to a company that makes an effort.
Conversational SMS marketing is an excellent opportunity to set your brand apart in terms of customer support. Let’s take a look at how you can leverage conversational SMS marketing to achieve high conversion rates, grow your customer base, and build lasting relationships with your customers.
Abandoned Cart Recovery
Abandoned carts are among the most challenging situations for eCommerce brands. When customers put items in their cart and then decide not to go through with the purchase for one reason or another, it can be a frustrating “Oh, so close!” situation.
When a customer is only a step or two short of finalizing their purchase, there’s still an opportunity for you to make them come back and seal the deal. By simply making an effort to find out why they abandoned their cart, you can communicate to your customer that you value them and are eager to address their needs.
There are a variety of reasons why customers abandon their carts—the simplest way of finding out why is by talking to them. Conversational SMS marketing is the ideal way to do it. When you know what it is that made them change their mind, you’ll have the chance to recover the abandoned cart by offering them a solution.
Product Alternatives and Recommendations
When people have product-specific questions or inquiries about payment methods or shipping, and they can’t find the information on your website, there’s a high likelihood that they won’t make the purchase.
You can turn things around and still convert the sale by reaching out and offering assistance. For example, through conversational text messaging, you can ask how you can help them complete their order and open the communication to any questions and concerns they may have. You will then have the opportunity to recommend alternative products or offer discounts and other incentives.
Leverage Up-Selling and Cross-Selling Opportunities
When you establish a good relationship with your customers through SMS marketing, you open the doors to up-sells and cross-sells.
You can use your knowledge of your customer’s buying history and send them a text message about an upcoming product or a special promo that they might be interested in. But keep in mind that it’s essential to take the conversational approach to your SMS marketing.
When you message your customers to activate an up-sell and cross-sell, it should not sound like you’re only after their money. Instead, your message should enhance their brand experience by communicating to your customer that you understand and are looking after their needs.
You can convert first-time buyers into repeat customers and, eventually, into loyal customers by giving them a warm welcome into the brand’s community.
You can use conversational SMS marketing to send a welcome message that may include a welcome discount code for their next purchase. You can send your welcome message after they finalize the purchase on your website or they receive their order.
Of course, it’s just as important to keep in touch with your repeat customers to build a lasting relationship. You can do this by activating up-sells and cross-sells (as described above) alongside your usual marketing promotions. Again, make sure that your SMS marketing approach is personalized and open to a real and timely exchange.
Your customers lead busy lives and may easily forget about that special discount offer you sent through text. You can give them a gentle nudge to remind them about the offer's validity or even offer to extend the validity period. In addition to adding value to their brand experience, the constant and friendly engagement will ensure that your brand is always the first option that comes to mind when they’re ready to shop.
When done right, SMS marketing is the ideal tool to directly impact your customers’ brand experience and build lasting relationships with them.
Through conversational SMS marketing, you can provide your customers with a personal shopping assistant, brand and product consultant, problem-solver, and a truly unique experience. As a result, you can have a great chance of success at keeping your customers engaged and interested and earning their loyalty.