How chatbots are revolutionizing sales process

Artificial Intelligence has been the stepping stone to helping companies achieve their sales targets around the world over the past few years. Especially, AI-powered chatbots are proving to be outstanding for lead filtration and lead generation. They have given companies the ability to shorten their sales cycles and increase revenues. These smart chatbots are providing precise information to customers at the right time, by being the dependable counterparts that the sales representatives need. 

For small businesses, which do not have a high budget, Sales chatbots are the best option for them to drive in sales. These AI chatbots are pushing all the boundaries in the sale. They can function 24X7 without a worry on the sleep cycle or work-life balance. 47% of the people have also agreed that they are willing to make a purchase initiated by a chatbot. When a chatbot is properly implemented it can be the greatest addition to the team. It can make your sales team more productive and efficient. Here we provide you all the information on why do you need a chatbot and how to design one for sales.

Why are chatbots essential for businesses?

Chatbots have conversations with real humans in real-time. They are useful when you have a lean sales team and want to crack a global market with minimum effort. Or, when you have a large sales team that looks to carry a unified voice. These sales chatbots help the sales teams by offering visitors with the right information to make a purchasing decision. Chatbots gather customer data to help identify potential leads. These leads are then passed onto reps to take it forward to the next steps of the sales process. 

How an AI chatbot works

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Chatbots can help you with two aspects of sales. They could help find or introduce you to new leads or close a sale for you. Chatbots help both your customers and the agents. When a chatbot interacts with customers, it collects all possible information about them and at the same time provides information about your company or business to the customers. So when the customers get connected to a human agent both sides have enough information on each other. 

How are chatbots improving the sales process? 

  1. Converting Visitors into Leads 

While running ads can get visitors to your website, it takes a lot more effort to get the visitor to convert into a lead. These leads then have to be nurtured to turn into customers. Chatbots engage with every visitor. They are trained to ask a set of questions, which determine whether the visitor is a potential lead. Every time this potential lead visits the website, the chatbots offer them solutions that can turn them into a paying customer. 

A well trained AI chatbot can work the entire sales funnel with little to no effort from a sales rep. Chatbots reduce the friction involved in sales by being the single point of contact for the business. They bring in the sales rep into the conversation when it can no longer answer questions or if the lead requests to speak to a rep. So, sales reps can focus on bigger deals while the chatbot works towards turning a visitor into a lead and then to a customer. 

  1. Offers cross-selling and up-selling opportunities 

Sales don’t always come from new customers. So, this is where cross-selling and up-selling come into play. Cross-selling is offering the customers to buy a complementary or related product, whereas up-selling is selling a high-end or upgraded product. This technique is responsible for an average of 30 – 35% of the revenue on e-commerce websites. 

Chatbots gather customer data and can offer smart product recommendations to the customers by suggesting the customers with similar products according to their preferences. These personalized recommendations provide a better customer experience and also establishes a good relationship with the customer. 

  1. Integrates with CRM

In a way, chatbots give back to sales reps. They handle lead generation and qualification, but they also work towards nurturing the lead. Once the chatbot qualifies a lead, it transfers the information to the CRM. This cuts several steps for your agents. It simply requires them to manage the lead. With the CRM integration, the chatbot manages the routine conversations with leads based on the information it has stored in its database. 

If a chatbot user is divided into categories such as first-time visitors, highly-qualified leads, or customers, the chatbot engages with the customer based on their category and works to move them to the next stage of their purchase journey. 

  1. Reduce the cost and time of the sales cycle 

The entire sales cycle is a long and drawn-out process. It involves a lot of research and data in the early steps. The cost per lead has been steadily increasing over the years. And, businesses have for long been trying to come up with a solution. Chatbots eliminates the need for manual data collection and data entry and lets the company focus more on nurturing the leads. The follow-ups will be taken care of by the chatbots while the sales rep can move forward with qualified leads. With this level of automation, chatbots save businesses time and money.

Potential cost savings graph

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How to design a sales bot? 

Now that you are aware of how chatbots can improve your sales process, it is important to know how to design one for sales. Here are a few steps on how to do so. 

  1. Set a goal 

When you build a chatbot, it is important to define the ultimate goal. This differs according to the type of business. If you are a company selling high price services, then customers would want to interact with a human before closing the deal. In this case, you can design your chatbots to identify the leads or sell the introductory offer. It can feed you the information from those leads and schedule a call. If your company sells products or services less than $150, then you can set your chatbots to close a sale and also upsell and cross-sell. 

  1. Train with the right information 

A chatbot should be equipped with all the necessary information for a better understanding and solving customer issues. It should be capable of asking all the necessary questions to collect information from the customers. Your chatbots should be provided with all the questions that would help them identify prospective leads. 

Train your bot

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  1. Make it conversational 

One of the things that separate a live chat from emails is the conversational style of messaging. Emails are long and formal. This is not the case with live chats. Keep your messages and short and conversational. Make it a two-way conversation and do not give close-ended answers. For example, if a customer asks “Do you have a pink shade of this t-shirt?”. Answer by saying “Yes. We do have pink and also there are three other color options to the same t-shirt”. This facilitates a conversation than just a yes or no answer. 

  1. Set your chatbots to follow-up 

A good way to retain your customers is by following up. If they completed a purchase, set up your chatbots to send surveys, and collect feedback. If your customers have left their cart abandoned with a few items in it, then proactively reach out to them to complete their purchase. Customers also get distracted midway through the chat. Your chatbot should reach out to them more than one time to reinitiate the conversation. 

Conclusion 

Companies of any size can deploy chatbots. It will boost your sales process and increase customer satisfaction. Sales chatbots operate 24×7 and can offer round the clock sales opportunities. You can make use of the customer data for both sales and also marketing teams. It will be highly beneficial for small businesses to automate their sales process rather than hiring a large number of human agents. Chatbots are now very easy to set up for sales processes, they are convenient and efficient, making them a win-win strategy for your business. 

About The Author

Aysha Shereen

Aysha Shereen is a content writer and a copywriter. A writer by day and a reader by night, she has worked for several leading brands as a copywriter and a social media planner. When she is not doing these, she is either binge-watching new series or exploring the eateries in the city. 

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