Previously in our masterclass series on Guided Selling, we covered what it means for e-commerce brands, how it can benefit you, the numerous ways your customers will love your brand, and some excellent examples to inspire you.
If you haven’t read those posts yet, Guided Selling is currently one of the hottest tools in the e-commerce game.
According to Gartner, almost 51% of sales brands have deployed AI guided selling or plan to deploy AI-driven guided selling in the next three years.
Did you also know that 83% of shoppers require support before purchasing?
Guided selling is a highly personalised strategy that provides customer support online by matching customer needs and goals to the right product in your catalogue.
When done well, guided shopping resembles a personal, human, in-store shopping experience that so many of us love.
It also helps to nudge, advise, and guide the customer across all touchpoints and can include post-purchase support.
This tool will also become extremely important in the world of zero-party data in the future.
Your competitors have likely already started working with it on their channels- and are seeing significant results!
If you want to figure out how to start guided selling for your brand, remember the points below before you start looking for an e-commerce guided selling tool.
Evaluate your Store’s Current State
Is your website easy to navigate?
Is your catalogue very numerous?
Do you have a lot of technical features?
A clear overview of your store’s strengths and weaknesses and where and why your customers usually drop off is essential so you can address it with Guided Selling.
Remember to also note down your
- the current rate of visitors
- the time spent on each page (even where on the page their attention usually goes to)
- your return rate
- your cart abandonment rate, etc.,
so you know what type of customer support is required at what touchpoint.
Having key metrics to quantify where you will show you how much of an asset guided selling is, along with unique ways you can stand apart in the crowd.
Select your Goals & KPIs
After the above step, match what goals and metrics you will use to measure the success of this strategy.
E.g., if you are successful enough through your ads to get many new visitors but cannot convert most of them, your goal will be to engage your customers and answer any doubts so that they add to the cart.
However, if your product page is convincing enough and they add to the cart, but your cart abandonment rate is very high, your guided selling strategy should provide live support, clarify doubts, and share testimonials and reviews.
Hence, it is essential to do the first step, then quantify what metrics will support the success and failure of your initial strategy so you can continuously fine-tune it.
Know your Customer’s Needs & Goals
This is a pivotal step and will form the basis of your Guided Selling strategy.
Are your customers more goal-oriented or enjoy discovering your products? If both, what is the percentage?
How easy is it to choose products from your category? What age group and what tier city do they stay in?
What are their most common complaints about shopping from you?
E.g., if you have a varied product catalogue, it will be time-consuming to find the right fit (e.g., lipstick shades, vitamins, etc.), so your tool should be able to reduce time and confusion and aid in making faster checkouts.
Do your customers often look for reviews (see via pixel tracking on your page- where they spend the most time on)
If your FAQ page gets visited often during pre-purchase, your customer is likely to need more reassurance with logistical details so you can make sure your live chat widget is timed to nudge your customer at the right moment.
Make sure this step is extensively done, so you know what potential customers are looking for within your category, how educated they are about your products, and how they normally shop from them.
Have Extensive Knowledge of your Product Catalogue
Along with deep customer knowledge, you also need to, in plain language, know what product will suit what type of customer.
We mentioned plain language because it needs to be simple and casual enough for conversations on chat.
Your customer should understand within 2-3 short sentences what the product is, who it’s for and what their next step needs to be.
When you know your catalogue well, you can also find out the common questions people usually have w.r.t your category.
Take cues from previous Instagram comments on your ads, any emails or DMS you may have gotten, and any survey you have on your customers.
Your chatbot partner will be able to customise the bot according to these inputs, and the more detailed it is, the more subtle and accurate the conversations will be.
Select the Right Channels + Have an Omnichannel Strategy
Should you employ guided selling only on your website?
Perhaps most of your customers discover you through your social media channels… If so, which one is the most used?
Selecting the right channels is key. Provide support where your audience is present most because being present everywhere will be inefficient and expensive.
Now, Google found that most people consider at least nine information sources before purchasing a product.
Among them, checking your social media is usually the most common. So Instagram is indeed your new homepage!
But even more than that, the app most online shoppers check the most is their Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, or their fav chat app!
If you run many ads, have you noticed several DMs asking more about the product? If so, you know you need to include that channel in your strategy.
It’s also possible that a customer finds your product through Instagram and finishes the sale on your website. This is why it is essential to have a single omnichannel platform to ensure the customer doesn’t get frustrated and has to share the same information or question repeatedly.
We created our e-commerce help desk for this exact reason- when all the interaction is being relayed to the team through one dashboard, analytics get more accurate, and the team will work with less friction.
It’s also important for our next point.
Create a Cohesive Brand Tone
One of the greatest advantages of using AI for our guided selling tool is that we can customise the bot to maintain a consistent brand tone.
For one of our brands that are in the health and wellness category, we customised the bot to reply and talk like a doctor. Their conversions skyrocketed with such a simple modification!
Not only does it leave a stronger, clearer impression on your customers, but it’s also great for increasing conversions.
Customer support must be distinctive in this day and age where several D2C brands compete within the same industry niche. Personalising your brand tone can lead to greater recall and engagement while shopping.
Personalise it and Make it Sound Human
Did you know that 74 % of shoppers get frustrated when they see products that are not personalized?
Making your visitors feel comfortable but also respected is essential. When designing your chatbot’s conversation flows or language points, you need to ensure it sounds like a friendly, considerate employee.
Remembering the details shared the last time and employing them in all future conversations.
Create a fun, Engaging Quiz for Self-serve Customers
Product finder quizzes can be fun and rewarding for discovery-oriented customers. Like Mac Lipsticks or the ASC shoe finder quiz, you too can design a landing page that works to filter out options according to their inputs.
This is fantastic for brands with several product variations and customers who want guidance but don’t want any support. They will feel empowered to find the perfect match with a few fun steps.
Create Simple Conversation Flows & Questions
If you’re planning to use Guided Selling through live chat, keeping the conversation flow short and simple is key to increasing conversions.
We recommend not using more than 2-3 questions to provide your customers with the right product and always make it easy for them to go back or select another option.
You can check out how our level 3 chatbot does this for our brands here!
Use Data from your Help Desk for Future Conversations
Information gathered across channels over time from such conversations where you either have or failed to make a sale is extremely powerful.
Not only is your chatbot continuously learning, but you can also keep fine-tuning your chatbot copy with the cues from customer interactions.
Having it all in a single helpdesk will make it even more streamlined.
How to Start Guided Selling with LimeChat
Building a guided selling tool from scratch is not easy. It’s also time-consuming.
When you create one and set up everything from scratch, your competitors may have already moved ahead.
If you’re looking for a guided selling tool made for e-commerce, you’re on the right page!
Take a look at the video below to see how we used guided selling for one of our clients.
We can make a custom guided selling model for you that lets you:
- Engage both discovery-oriented and goal-oriented customers to maximise your sales
- Keep customers invested in their shopping journey by minimising fatigue from information overload and choice overload
- Address product-specific queries to boost confidence, and
- Deliver an incomparable customer experience
Our powerful dashboard, a one-stop, single ecommerce help desk, minimises resolution time, offers an integrated omnichannel experience, has integration with Shopify apps PLUS you get 20+ customizable templates for different industries!
Curious to find out what we can do for you? Book a free demo here!