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How You Can Effectively Use Chatbots At Every Stage Of The Buyer’s Journey


Picture this concept: Your Shopify store has an automated bot that nurtures customers at every stage of their journey, including a customer’s decision to make a purchase.

Your brand can achieve all this, and it’s through a simple-to-setup Facebook Messenger automation with Octane AI. With a variety of tools and features, you can use our chatbot software to drive awareness, consideration, and decision-making for every website visitor and customer.

Accenture Pull Quote

Is increasing revenue your main goal? If so, with a quick setup and minimal maintenance, your Shopify store can start using a chatbot online to increase your monthly revenue. We’ve seen many brands achieve great success using a variety of chatbot tools and features. In this article, we’ll show you where some features live in the customer journey, so you can learn how to optimize your chatbot marketing to achieve results like some of the best Shopify ecommerce businesses.

What is a chatbot?

A chatbot is artificial intelligence (AI) software, also known as conversational AI, that can create conversations with users through messaging applications like Facebook Messenger, SMS, or telephone. Chatbots are important because they’re known for creating human-like interactions between users and companies, ensuring minimal maintenance for the actual business.

Many ecommerce businesses use chatbots because they offer a simple automated way for customers to interact with brands for detailed information, such as being notified of shipping updates, discounts and sales, and more. Octane AI takes this one step further by offering customized chatbot automation that shares personalized experiences for each individual user through custom convos are more.

What is the buyer’s journey?

The buyer’s journey is the process a potential customer goes through before making the decision to purchase. In its simplest form, the buyer’s journey has three main stages: awareness, consideration, and decision. The reason it’s important to identify the buyer’s journey is because it’ll help you identify personas and marketing strategies that foster customers in each unique stage.

Buyers Journey-1

The goal is to lead customers from the awareness stage towards making a decision to purchase your product. It’s a mistake to assume one strategy will nurture website visitors in each stage. You must understand what your customers’ pain points are in different scenarios so you can ensure you’re providing the right message to keep guiding them along the journey. This is why each stage is clearly identified by what a visitor or customer is thinking or feeling. Plan your content and marketing initiatives to suit each stage separately. You’ll have much better results this way.

Forbes pull quote

Chatbots are a great way to nurture your customers at every stage of the buyer’s journey. In fact, 70% of millennials have reported positive experiences when using them. This is because you can set up simple automation that will allow you to send various content that perfectly suits whatever a visitor or customer may be feeling. Let’s talk about chatbot features with Octane AI that help you nurture your visitors at every stage so you can start increasing revenue.

Interested in setting up chatbot AI for your Shopify business? Check out what you can do with Octane AI by booking a demo!

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Provide value in the awareness stage

The awareness stage is super important. As your visitor is just becoming aware that they have a problem, or as they begin to see an opportunity, it’s up to you to help them identify that problem or opportunity. If you miss this stage, you won’t lead visitors down your funnel or get conversions. Chatbot features are your opportunity to provide value in the awareness stage to ensure customers identify their problem or opportunity and continue to engage. In fact, a study by AMA found that live chat resulted in a 29% increase in the marketing awareness stage of the customer journey.

Chat Widget

One chatbot feature you’ll want to ensure you have for this stage of the buyer’s journey is an on-site chat widget. Take Ella + Mila, as a chatbot example. They’ve ensured their Messenger chat widget is available on every page, so while customers browse through the website, there’s an easy opportunity to engage.

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By simply saying, “Hello,” Ella + Mila instantly responds to you and offers a list of links leading to valuable content, such as to shop, learn about shipping, or to contact Ella + Mila directly. Not only does this feel personal for any visitor, but all of these links could help move visitors along the path to making a purchase too.

Custom Convos

Another important tool is custom convos. By setting up a custom convo with automatic responses for users to click, you can personalize the journey further by giving your bot a voice. Custom convos can also make interacting with your bot really engaging. Check out this one from Suppz.com.

Suppz Messenger Bot

Notice how personal and engaging this convo from Suppz is? The questions allow the user to identify a problem, and then Suppz shares a product as the solution. This is just one example, but some brands use them to set up quizzes to help customers find products. Others have used custom convos to share information about what it is their brand does or sells. This is why tools like live chat are leading the digital content method compared to other automation.

Live Chat Graph

There are so many options for you to provide value to your customer and help them realize an opportunity to shop with your brand. The custom convos tool is also extremely useful for the consideration stage as well.

Keep things personal in the consideration stage

The consideration stage is all about keeping things personal and informative. During this stage, customers are beginning to evaluate your product as their solution or opportunity. Help them realize that with personalization and valuable information. Think about what kind of information your targeted customer needs to learn in order to realize that your product is their answer or solution. A few key chatbot tools to help drive the consideration stage include custom convos and browse and cart abandonment messages.

Custom Convos

We mentioned custom convos in the awareness stage; they’re a great tool for the consideration stage, too. Take note that 53% of people are more likely to shop with a business that they can message. Custom convos are your opportunity in the consideration stage to make your brand stand out as the one and only solution. A good example is Polysleep’s custom convo that offers a comparison between their mattresses and big competitors. They’ve also shared links so the visitor can learn more about why they’re a better mattress solution.

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This type of informational and FAQ-styled custom convo is the perfect way to engage with visitors in the consideration stage because you’re providing valuable content that will make your product stand out in a way that they realize it is the one-and-only solution for their problem.

Consider what way your brand could use custom convos in the consideration stage. Quizzes, product finders, and FAQs are all popular variations we see our customers at Octane AI use custom convos for that have high engagement rates.

Browse abandonment and cart abandonment

When visitors are at the awareness stage, they’re likely browsing through your products and adding items to their cart to see shipping costs or pricing totals. However, sometimes these customers will leave their carts abandoned. Since consideration is where the customer is evaluating your product, sending live chatbot messages for browse abandonment and cart abandonment are your store’s opportunity to drive those at the consideration stage towards the decision stage.

Chatbot pull quote

In a recent article, Hubspot found that 47% of customers would be open to making a purchase from a chatbot. This is why using automated messenger marketing for browse and cart abandonment messages are a great solution to bring customers back to your store to complete a purchase. When you personalize the message, send a coupon, and share something a visitor was previously interested in, there’s a good chance you’ll push them forward to the next stage. For example, see how Ella + Mila and Skinny Mixes send their cart abandonment messages in an engaging way.

Skinny Mixes and Ella + Mila Messenger Chat

In both cases, the message is personalized with the customer’s name, they send an image of the item that was left, and they share a link for the customer to go back and finalize the purchase. This makes it efficient for anyone in the consideration stage to take that next step on the buyer journey.

Both browse abandonment and cart abandonment features are available in Octane AI’s suite. And you can completely customize the message so it sounds like your brand’s voice. In fact, Skinny Mixes saw an increase of $280,000 in monthly revenue from simple Messenger and SMS automation. If you want to see their full strategy, read the Skinny Mixes case study!

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Optimize for the best experience in the decision stage

You’re participating in chatbot marketing because you want to increase your revenue and drive site visitors to make a purchase, right? Of course! But the journey doesn’t stop there. Although it’s true that 35% of consumers buy items with the help of a chatbot, when customers make it to the decision stage it’s your job to nurture them and show them a top-notch customer experience that they’ll remember.

Frame 8

Give customers the option to opt-in to order status updates from the checkout or order confirmation page. This way, you’ll be able to share shipping information and updates, thank you messages, and follow-up messages where you can ask customers questions about their order and if they’re satisfied with it. This gives your customers an opportunity to engage with you in a way that will give you valuable information about how they feel about your brand. It’s also an opportunity for your business to show its customers that it cares about them and appreciates their purchases.

Build trust in the decision stage so that your customers will continue to return and make repeat purchases, ensuring your brand’s long-term success as more customers become engaged enough to come back and purchase again.

You have a new customer, now what?

Many businesses make the mistake in believing the buyer’s journey ends at the decision stage. Although you may have gotten a customer to make a purchase from taking them from the awareness stage to the decision stage, the work doesn’t end there. In fact, your goal is to increase brand loyalty as well.

So, what’s next in the buyer journey? Follow up messages. If you’ve used your chatbot the way it’s intended for at each stage of the buyer journey, you should have collected more opt-ins. Utilizing your opt-ins is now going to be your way to continually follow up with previous visitors and customers to re-engage them again.

Consider this last stage as the re-engagement stage. You want to send messages that will bring customers back and drive them through the same funnel to make a purchase again. A few key ways to do this are to send promotional messages featuring sales, coupons and discount codes, or product recommendations.

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For example, Skinny Mixes sent a message to customers who have opted-in asking if they’d be interested in syrup flavor for a list of drinks. When the customer says “yes,” they are then sent a graphic featuring a weekend sale and a link to shop. For customers who’ve made purchases at your store before, this is a great way to re-engage them by reminding them about your great products.

Chatbots are your solution to guide customers through the buyer’s journey

Chatbots can do so much for your Shopify business—and with minimal effort. By offering a great experience for customers at every stage of their journey, your business is bound to see an increase in sales and revenue, especially when data shows how often customers are likely to engage with a chatbot through Facebook Messenger.

Ready to see what the Octane AI Messenger and SMS chatbot can do for you? Reach out to us or book a demo to find out!

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Don’t spend any more time searching for the best chatbot. Your brand’s chatbot journey awaits, and so do your customers!


The 250+ Page Playbook on Facebook Messenger & SMS Marketing for Ecommerce

Fast-growing DTC brands implementing this playbook have connected with 18x more customers, doubled their 7-day ROAS, recovered 5x more abandoned cart revenue & increased AOV 25%.


This article originally appeared in the OctaneAI blog and has been published here with permission.

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