The Complete Guide to Conversational Commerce: What is It, How It Works, Examples

Giving the finest possible customer experience will help you retain customers and boost sales. Data has shown that 86% of buyers are willing to pay more for a great experience.
February 24, 2023
Product Marketing Manager,

All You Need to Know about Conversational Commerce

Giving the finest possible customer experience will help you retain customers and boost sales. Data has shown that 86% of buyers are willing to pay more for a great experience.

According to research from PwC, 42% of consumers would pay more to get a friendly and welcoming experience. Most Americans, nearly 80% of them, agree that speed, convenience, knowledgeable help, and friendly service are the essential elements that would increase a positive consumer experience.

Luckily, even when business strategies change over time following the trend of the digital era, you can still use a very old but still relevant approach by building a conversation with them. 

Using a conversational commerce platform is a straightforward method for accomplishing that. What exactly is Conversational Commerce? 

What is Conversational Commerce?

By combining traditional conversation and modern technologies, conversational commerce platforms have become essential in business. Conversational commerce is a new form of e-commerce marketing involving brands and consumers communicating directly through online chat channels.

In simple terms, Conversational commerce platform is an online platform that allows customers to make purchases, ask for product information, and receive customer support through natural language conversations, such as chat, text, or voice.

With the use of conversational commerce technology, customers experience positive interactions as they acquire assistance and product details from your business through simple and direct interactions. In fact, online stores that use conversational commerce can increase their annual revenue by 7 to 25%. Also, a Facebook study shows that 53% of consumers are more likely to shop with a brand they can message.  

Conversational commerce platforms usually use Artificial Intelligent (AI) technology like chatbots  for improved customer support. However, it actually doesn't matter what channel you use as it could be a chatbot, live chat, voice assistant, or messaging platform, the most important thing is that consumer communication is personalized, helpful, and able to move the consumer faster through the sales funnel. 

But how do we use conversational commerce?

How Does Conversational Commerce Work?

Conversational commerce allows a brand to connect deeply with its consumers at every step of their journey.

 It is not intended to communicate weekly promotions on website banners or pop-up notifications, but rather to enable the type of selling that opens a hassle-free conversation between you and your existing and potential customers, resulting in the establishment of a more valuable relationship.

The consumer journey map consists of five stages: awareness, consideration, decision, retention, loyalty, and advocacy. If you're using the right conversational commerce solution, you can build a relationship with consumers at each stage, improve their experience, and even establish a long-lasting relationship. 

How Conversational Commerce Work

  • Awareness

Consumers begin to realize they have a problem or need something

  • Consideration

They begin to do research to find a solution.

  • Decision

Evaluate all solution options to determine which one is the best.

  • Retention

The company needs to ensure that consumers not abandon their cart and really make a purchase.

  • Advocacy

The company provides after-sales service to increase consumer’s satisfaction level and if they post a good review of a product, that would be better.

1. Awareness

The first stage of consumers' journey begins when they realize they have a problem or need something, whether a product or service. So they will start looking for solutions, seek professional help, and then discover your brand in the process. 

Awareness is considered to be the most important stage because this is where consumers will get information about your brand. How can they purchase your product or service if they don't know who you are? In fact, 59% of consumers prefer to buy products from brands that they are familiar with. 

That being said, the awareness stage is your chance to show to customers that you are available to address their needs and problems through personal dialogue. Conversational commerce platforms enable customers to easily connect and interact with a brand, forming an effective impression of your brand during the awareness stage.

Streamlining communication could increase consumer confidence in your brand, leading to higher consumer retention and conversion rates.

2. Consideration

Once the consumers know what kind of product or service they need, they will begin deep researching to determine which solution is best for them. They might compare your brand to competitors or read past testimonials.

At this stage, you can put conversational commerce in use to provide consumers with more detailed information that websites or forums can't or answer their specific questions and concerns. This way, you increase your chance of being selected over the competitors. 

3. Decision

After consumers do their research and get more information about the products or services they are considering, they will start to evaluate those options based on several factors, such as price, quality, performance, benefits, and trust in the brand.

Making 1-on-1 conversations with the consumer will immediately bolster trust in the brand, and the more you do this, the more likely you gain a loyal consumer. 

You can also view this as an opportunity to increase sales by providing customized descriptions and pricing. Conversational commerce can be used to offer different products and pricing options, explain more features and details about specific products or services, and reassure customers through more personal and legitimate dialogue.

4. Retention

At this stage, the consumer is ready to finalize their purchase and might already put their desired product in the shopping cart. Sadly, that doesn't exactly mean that they will finish the purchase.

As many brands already know, consumers like to abandon their carts. The mobile abandonment rate is close to 86%! and the desktop abandonment rate is around 73%. This is one of the leading causes of reduced conversion rates. So, what should you do to prevent this?

Conversational Commerce platforms can assist you in reminding your customers about the product they left in their cart and re-selling it to them through marketing tactics such as offering discounts, promo codes, or coupons in a personal manner with the intent of completing their purchase.

5. Advocacy

Let's say your consumer has made a purchase. However, the journey doesn't stop there.It is critical to ensure that your customers have no remorse after purchasing the product because this can affect the trustworthiness of your brand. To do so, you must instill confidence in them through personalized conversation. This can improve their satisfaction and lead them to do good reviews or even recommend your product to their relatives.

The fifth stage is the most difficult to complete. However, using conversational commerce platforms to provide comprehensive customer support whenever they need it will strengthen your relationship and turn them into loyal customers.

According to Harvard Business Review, acquiring new consumers is five to 25 times more expensive than retaining your existing consumer. So, doing conversational commerce not only helps you increase sales but also cuts your expenses.

The 4 Types of Conversational Commerce

By this part of the article, you might already be aware that conversational commerce greatly benefits your business. There are a lot of conversational commerce tools out there that you might find a bit overwhelming. So, what type of conversational commerce platform is the most effective for your business? Here are some common examples of conversational commerce tools that you can use:

Types of Conversational Commerce

  • Live Chat
  • Chatbots
  • Messaging Apps
  • Voice Assistance

1. Live Chat Software

One of the most common tools to use is Live Chat Software, especially in the e-commerce industry. This software allows consumers to get a quick answer without requiring them to fill out a form, send emails, make a call, and wait for days to get a response.

The biggest advantage of using live chat is that this software allows an agent to chat with several consumers at a time, something that is not possible with other customer service methods like phone and email, so brands can boost consumers' satisfaction by reducing the wait time.

Another way to use live chat is proactively engage consumers when they visit your website. You can accomplish this by sending a friendly message offering assistance throughout the journeys of your website's visitors.

2. Chatbots

For small businesses, chatbots might be the conversational commerce tool you want to use. With reduced consumer service capacity and more straightforward offerings, chatbots can fulfill the purpose of conversational commerce by answering frequently asked questions.

Chatbots can be programmed to answer questions such as product lists, recommended products, and order statuses. If the chatbot is more advanced, you can even include conversational AI to answer some personalized questions.

3. Messaging Apps

Aside from live chat software and chatbots, you can also use popular messaging apps like the WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger, as 90% of conversational commerce takes place through these two popular messaging apps.

Such conversational commerce platforms offer a huge benefit. Using apps that consumers use every day improves your chance of forging a relationship. Besides, it's worth noting that a lot of users connect with businesses through messaging apps, even more than through social media.

Given the importance of security, some brands and consumers may prefer messaging. Messaging is believed to be more secure as many messaging apps use end-to-end encryption, whereas social media is more open to the public and other businesses. 

Another advantage of messaging apps is that they help to form a more casual connection by using common messaging media such as stickers, emojis, or GIFs. This fosters an emotional bond between brands and their customers, which may lead to increased spending.

4. Voice Assistance

These days, there are a lot of voice assistance softwares that you might already know, such as Siri, Alexa, Google Assistant, or Cortana.  According to research, 71% of consumers prefer voice search to typing. Because of their convenience, their popularity is rapidly growing. Not just easy, this type of conversational commerce is fun to use as well resulting in lightening the entire mood and improving the emotional bond to your brand.

The main feature of voice assistance is the ability to answer voice commands immediately. This feature is used to improve consumer relations by answering questions quickly, driving consumers—or potential consumers—to your website, and creating the opportunity to connect with you.

3 Examples of Conversational Commerce in Action

You already know all the theories, benefits, and conversational commerce platforms that you can use. To give you a better understanding of conversational commerce, here are some examples of popular brands that use this method to achieve their goals.

1. Amazon Alexa

This brand is already mentioned in the previous point as one of the examples. Alexa, Amazon's voice assistant, can handle almost any surface-level request, such as Google some information, filling your Amazon shopping cart, and even completing the purchase if you link the payment information beforehand! It can also connect to other apps and home gadgets like a home speaker or television.

While this gadget may help you do some home-related stuff like turn on music or look for a recipe in Google, the most successful story of Alexa is the voice-activated virtual shopping assistant. 

2. Starbucks

Here is the average worker's morning routine: come to a coffee shop, wait in line, order a cup of coffee, wait for the coffee to be served, then drink the coffee. Imagine if there's an app that allows you to chat with the barista to put in an order and get your coffee without having to line up.

Well, Starbucks has already made that app. Through this app, you can message a virtual barista and place an order. Once your order is ready, they will inform you and you can grab your drink instantly. No need to worry about the payment because this app is also linked to the payment system.

3. H&M

H&M takes conversational commerce to the next level by proactively engaging in conversational marketing via a chatbot. Using a messaging app named Kik, H&M contacted potential and returning customers to offer new products, sales promotions, or related items that may have been recently viewed by consumers.

From the consumers' point of view, this chatbot works in the same way as sales associates when they visit the store. They will ask a few questions and then provide recommendations based on the consumers' preferences. 

Another interesting feature of this chatbot is that consumers can see what pair of clothes other chatbot users have created. It's just like seeing someone trying on a certain item that catches their eye.

Conversational Commerce in Your Marketing Strategy

Conversational commerce provides a few ways to help you build your marketing and sales strategy. Making a conversation with consumers is one of the traditional ways to connect with them, and doing it online is not as simple as you might think. It can be more tricky and requires more strategy. So, here is some proven method that you can use to improve your marketing strategy by using conversational commerce.

1. Proactive Live Chat Integration

As explained before, integrating live chat software into your website serves many functions. One of them is reducing your time to respond to consumers. But, you can get the most out of this software by using it proactively, connecting with consumers directly, informing them about some products, and guiding them from the beginning to the purchase process.

In addition, most live chat software integrates directly with CRM software. This will allow you to collect consumers' responses immediately from the chat session, and you can use that information to create a better consumer profile.

2. Chatbot Integration

Similar to live chat software, the benefit of chatbot integration is that you can automatically respond to the consumers' questions. Besides, it's also easy to use!

This conversational commerce app is ideal for small businesses that do not have a dedicated customer service representative. A chatbot can assist you in answering basic questions or making product recommendations.

3. Direct Chat and Messaging Promotions

Through direct chat in messaging apps, you can apply some marketing tactics, such as sending the content of new products, offering the newest promotions, reminding the abandoned cart, or giving detailed product information.

By doing this with messaging apps, you allow your consumers to connect with you directly. This way, your marketing strategy would feel more honest and authentic, giving a better chance for consumers to get a positive experience with your brand.

Benefits of Conversational Commerce for Customer Support

One of the key factors of a successful business is its ability to provide customer support. Since getting new consumers is more difficult and expensive than retaining the previous ones, it shows that using a conversational commerce platform will greatly benefit you in the customer support area to improve the retention number.

1. Live Chat and Chat Bot Support

The more options available in front of consumers, the more likely they find it hard to choose something. This often happens, especially in the retail industry. When consumers get stuck, they usually need some help that will provide them with answers, solutions, and recommendations.

This is where live chat and chatbot take part. These two conversational commerce solutions will give an immediate answer to help the consumers make a decision and proceed to checkout.

2. Direct Messaging for Support Cases

Service companies sometimes need additional care once the purchase has been made. This can be done easily if you are doing conversational commerce. Consumers can reach you easily, and you can quickly resolve their issues. By doing this, you are leaving the consumers feeling like they have been given the best care.

3. Task Management and Reminders

Conversational commerce, in this aspect, is more applicable for service-based companies. But, depending on the situation, this can also work on product sales. Some conversational commerce platforms allow you to set up an appointment for a consultation, receive payments, as well as suggest services or products in one application.

Other than those three benefits above, conversational commerce also proved to reduce cart abandonment. Using conversational commerce, you can prevent the rise of the abandonment rate by sending proactive greetings via live chat, sending a reminder of unpurchased items, or offering help to resolve certain issues.

 You can also use this tool to gather valuable feedback from consumers and use that information to make a strategy that can help build consumer loyalty. 

How can a conversational commerce platform help enterprises respond to changing consumer behavior?

It's important to understand how consumers behave toward products and services. During the pandemic, there were significant changes in consumer behavior that affected businesses, such as 46% of consumers doing online shopping only during the holiday season last year, and 67% of consumers said that their online shopping has significantly increased since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020.

Not only those, but Forbes Business Council members also predict that in 2022 consumers will demand more personalization, and text messaging communication will rise. All these changes won't be an issue for businesses if they put conversational commerce into practice. 

Based on data from Stackla, authenticity matters for 88% of consumers. In addition to that, 70% of consumers said that it's important for brands to provide them with personalized experiences. In fact, this has been done by 53% of marketers in 2021, they use a personalized email marketing strategy, and 72% of that percentage agree that it's been one of the most effective strategies, even more, successful than email automation.

As consumers expect more personalized service, brands have to start to determine which part of the consumer experience can be automated and which part needs to be handled directly. 

Text messaging was used for personal communication until a few years ago. But it's different now. With the rise of text message communication, using Whatsapp or Facebook Messenger could be one of the ways that any business can respond to changes. 

Transform digital conversations into sales conversational commerce platform

“According to Facebook, 74% of consumers will message a business to make a purchase. So, communication through messages is indeed an important thing.”

There are a lot of things going on in the digital world. Also, a lot of conversations as well. Believe it or not, you can turn these conversations into a sales lead, especially conversations on social media.

“According to Facebook, 74% of consumers will message a business to make a purchase. So, communication through messages is indeed an important thing.”

“But how can we transform those messages into a sales lead?

First, you must look for relevant groups or topic pages where people engage in conversation. To do this, you can use social media listening tools, which can help you to categorize data based on keywords.

Second, use conversation commerce to uncover hidden problems that you might not find on other social media channels. Most social media users are not shy to share their opinions about something, so you can proactively reach them to gain valuable insights.

After you get the pieces of information, transforming them into sales is the other challenge. It's easy to engage with consumers, but making them come back and move them through the sales funnel is another thing. What you can do is use the insights you gain from the conversations to make an offer that is targeted at a certain consumer with a certain problem. 

Another choice is transforming it into content that will help them resolve their issues. Through social media content, you can build conversations even more. For example, on Instagram, the conversation can be made in the comment section. It will not only give you more chances to understand your followers' behavior, but it will also increase your social media engagement.

Empower sales teams to engage seamlessly across digital channels

“According to a study conducted by Gartner, by 2025, 80% of B2B sales interaction will happen in digital channels. With these facts, there is no reason not to empower the sales team to engage in digital channels.”

Consumer experience is one of the most important aspects you have to mind if you want to run a successful business. In fact, 88% of companies now prioritize consumer experience in their communication center. Sure enough, they want to satisfy consumers and make their services happy.

Why is it important?

 B  Digitalizing the sales team will not only increase consumer engagement but also enables flexible and consumer-centric business. According to a study conducted by Gartner, by 2025, 80% of B2B sales interaction will happen in digital channels. With these facts, there is no reason not to empower the sales team to engage in digital channels.

To do that, first, you need to diversify digital channels and selling tools. The sales team will need a digital channel or tools that build engagement with their potential consumers. Conversational commerce platforms such as messaging apps, live chat software, or chatbots integrated with a website can be used.  Or you can use social media as well. 

If you are using a conversational commerce platform, it's better to use one that can bring conversations from different digital platforms. This way, your sales team will have a better workflow.

Integrate existing commerce investments to create fully unified consumer experiences

Consumers nowadays expect companies to provide them with the best possible experience.  All the data above shows it. It is preferable to create a fully unified consumer experience, which entails providing consistent experiences such as content, functionality, and brand personality to customers at every point of interaction across multiple digital channels.

In other words, all consumers should be able to get the same experience wherever they find your brand. You may have different digital channels like social media, website, email marketing, advertising, and any other channels, all of those should convey the same messaging and emotion so consumers would recognize your brand.

What is the benefit of doing this? From the employee side, this really boosts their satisfaction. To create a unified customer experience, you need a conversational commerce platform that is empowered by artificial intelligence (AI) to automate monotonous tasks. Using this, of course, will give employees more time to focus on more essential tasks and increase their productivity, which leads to their satisfaction.

A conversational commerce platform will also improve internal collaboration. This software is able to connect across divisions, such as customer service and marketing teams. So it would be easier for them to access and share information.

Meanwhile, from the consumer perspective, a unified consumer experience will also increase satisfaction. Your quick response to their concerns will leave them feeling happy. When consumers are satisfied and treated well, they will have loyalty to your brand. Happy and loyal consumers are also more likely to recommend brands to their friends or family.

“To create a fully unified consumer experience, there are five basic elements that you should know: a customer-first mentality, customer profiles, customer feedback, omnichannel communication, and data analysis.”

  • A customer-first mentality: all the employees must adopt this mindset. They have to put consumers' satisfaction first when making decisions.
  • Customer profiles: you need software to develop a complete customer profile with real-time updates about purchases, orders, and other information.
  • Custom feedback: For a brand to grow and improve its product or service, they need customer feedback. This includes monitoring their conversations on social media or asking them to fill out surveys. After that, you can use this information to make changes or come up with new strategies.
  • Omnichannel communication: The purpose of a unified consumer experience is to provide them with the same experience wherever they contact a brand. So, using an omnichannel communication platform to streamline communication across multiple channels is important.
  • Data analysis: Collecting data isn't enough. After the data is collected, you need to analyze it to understand consumers' preferences.

Create an end-to-end customer experience that spans all channels and touchpoints

You may now fully understand the importance of prioritizing consumers' experience and satisfaction. n fact, many businesses continue to suffer significant losses as a result of customer service issues. Part of the problem is that brands frequently measure their performance solely through metrics, ignoring the bigger picture.

In some cases, metric works. But, the metric alone isn't enough to give a piece of comprehensive information about consumers. To understand your consumers, you have to talk with them 1-on-1, walk in their shoes, and conduct better consumer experience research. One way to do that is by optimizing the end-to-end customer experience. 

”End-to-end customer experience is a series of interactions between consumers and brands throughout the entire journey of their relationship—from the thought of buying a product to the final purchase. But, the job doesn't end there. As part of a great end-to-end customer experience, you have to provide after-sales service, like doing follow-ups or asking for feedback.” 

So, how to create an end-to-end customer experience?

1. Rethink your customer journey

Consider your consumer's point of view and make certain that you are present wherever they are. To begin, you have to identify where your consumers will reach you. It may be from mobile apps, email, desktop or mobile searches, etc.

With so many ways for consumers to experience and interact with your brand, this might be a little overwhelming. This is why you need to step into their shoes. You can build a simple route to make the end-to-end customer experience smoother. To put it simply, consider these journeys as tasks that have to be completed.

2. Reduce Friction

You can minimize friction throughout the consumers' journey by replacing email or phone contact with live chat. Not only does it make communication easier, but you can also provide speedy responses for consumers' problems that could increase their satisfaction with your service.

Simplifying end-to-end consumer experience means helping them easily understand all the information they need to know. So, how do you help them identify the information they need? How do you ensure that they have made the right decision?

For brands that sell products directly to consumers, it might mean reducing the form field or providing more ways to check out the product. Using modern and fun technology like AR or VR also could be a big help because it allows potential buyers to see the product before they purchase it.

3. Develop data strategy

Data allows you to learn more about your customers. The number of products they have purchased, the frequency with which they visit your website, the products they have added to their shopping cart but have not yet purchased, or any other data—all of this information reveals your consumer behavior.

If you do digital marketing, data sets like social media engagement rate, followers, demographics, keyword search, or ad click results will be really useful for you. 

It's important to put all these data together in a data management platform so that the right team can get the right insights. 

4. Personalize

Research from Epsilon indicates that 80% of consumers are more likely to purchase a product or use a service from a brand when they offer personalized experiences. Since we are living in a modern era, you can get help from technologies like IoT devices, AI, content management platforms, or conversational commerce platforms to help you personalize consumers' journeys.

These technologies will enable you to automate basic tasks that don't require any of your employees to be involved in the process. It can also present content that is more relevant to your business, personalized offers, and build journeys tailored to certain behavior. 

In addition to giving the best experience to the consumer, these technologies can help you understand why people leave your brand, track several valuable metrics, and even report common problems that surface during consumer interactions.

5. Enable all teams

Many brands have different teams to handle consumers. The problem in this organization model is that each division will have different policies and platforms being used. This might lead to friction for consumers, ineffective workflow, scattered communication, disconnected processes, and repetitive tasks.

End-to-end consumer experience has many different parts. It may be a great idea to build a team that is specially dedicated to the consumer experience. But, before implementing this change, the company and all the employees must agree to convert to a consumer-centric model.


Conversational commerce tools can be immensely useful for your brands to improve the consumer experience. It may take some time and effort to implement and come up with a strategy to build a long-lasting relationship with your consumers, but the payoff is worth it.

Remember, satisfied and happy consumers can build loyalty to your brand, and you can achieve it by giving them the best experience while interacting with you. Also, don't forget to monitor your performance and measure the success of your strategy, so you know where to improve.

If you’re considering conversational commerce tools, can also be your choice. Whether your company is a small startup or an established enterprise, our experts can help your D2C brands to sell and support on multiple chat channels from a single platform effortlessly. With, you can sell on chat effortlessly, serve customers contextually, streamline operations efficiently, and centralize all your channels in one inbox.

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1. What's the difference between conversational marketing and conversational commerce?

Conversational marketing is the practice of engaging in conversation with consumers through messaging services, while conversational commerce refers to the sales process through direct conversations.

2. Why is conversational commerce important?

Conversational commerce can boost consumer satisfaction which leads to increased sales.

3. What is an example of conversational marketing?

You can use chatbots for lead generation, live chat on e-commerce applications, and social media conversational campaigns.

4. How do I leverage WhatsApp in the era of conversational commerce?

Use Whatsapp Business API so that several agents can use the same account, set quick replies and automated responses, make marketing campaigns using template messages, and many more.

5. How do I implement conversational commerce on Messenger and Instagram messaging?

You can use Messenger and Instagram messaging to automatically send messages and promote campaigns by sending messages that have been scheduled in advance and building 24/7 customer support.

6. What is conversational retail?

Conversational retail is just another term for conversational commerce. They have the same meaning, which is the practice of selling retail products through conversations.

7. How do I boost holiday sales of an eCommerce store by integrating customer service and conversational commerce strategies?

You can use automated chatbots that act like personal shopping assistants. This chatbot can automatically provide product recommendations and offer holiday promos.

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