Should You Be Using Guided Selling?

by Josh Biggs in Ecommerce on 26th May 2020

Improving conversion rates in 2020 is challenging because of competition and short attention spans, but of course, as always is essential for a successful marketing plan.

Personalization is critical to digital marketing and conversions, and that means that you base much of your strategy on creating a conversational funnel and using a chatbot for eCommerce. A conversational funnel is often called guided selling, and the following are all the things to know right now.

The Basics of Guided Selling

A guided selling or shopping experience is often done in Facebook messenger. Essentially, you’re creating a funnel that builds a conversation with potential customers to gain deep understanding of what each individual’s needs are.

Then, with that understanding, personalized recommendations can be made.

You use the features of Messenger to provide fast replies to customers in a way that streamlines their shopping experience, rather than requiring that they navigate through your entire inventory or website to find what they need or want.

What will happen with guided shopping campaigns is that a guide creates a conversation from an ad click-through Messenger on Facebook or Instagram.

Then, with the right tools, there is automatic segmentation and retargeting.

What’s unique and particularly compelling to customers with this approach is that they don’t feel like they’re being sold to.

Instead, they’re being guided toward making their own informed decisions.

Guided selling is much like the customer experience working with a salesperson in a brick-and-mortar store, tailored to an online eCommerce environment.

Eliminating Choice Overload

Along with helping customers feel in control of their experience, there are tremendous advantages to guided selling.

For example, consumers are always bombarded with choices. It can lead them to feel what’s called decision fatigue.

When a customer or potential customer is experiencing decision fatigue, they may abandon their cart, or pick something they end up being dissatisfied with.

With guided selling, the customer has a choice, but there aren’t so many choices that they become overwhelmed and stop shopping altogether.

How Does It Work?

While every business may have variations in its guided selling approach, the foundation of all of these strategies should be understanding customer needs so you can deliver a personalized experience.

To facilitate this, what will usually happen is that the customer is asked a set of questions that give an overview of their needs, but also their preferences.

Then, based on this foundational information, it’s possible to show customers the direct benefits of products that are most relevant to their needs. The focus of guided selling is on value instead of price.

There’s a dynamic recommendation of products or services.

Using Messenger

Facebook Messenger and Instagram messaging are great portals to offer guided selling.

You can also use chatbots directly on your site, but when you use Facebook Messenger, you’re going directly to where your targeted customers likely already are. Plus you can gain a competitive advantage because even though a lot of companies use Messenger, they aren’t using it well and embracing all of the opportunities it can offer in terms of guided selling.

Once you build a Messenger bot, you can then sync it to your website. That’s important because the chatbot needs to reflect your product and price updates and any other relevant information.

Asking the Right Questions

For a guided selling experience to work, you have to be asking the right questions. The questions you ask need to be targeted toward identifying customer need so that you can ultimately fill it.

You need to engage the customer quickly as a salesperson in a brick-and-mortar would and then be able to create a rapport.

As you’re building your online guided selling strategy, walk through the questions that’ll be asked as if it’s a person talking to a customer.

Third-party guided selling tools integrate machine learning that can make all of this much easier. When you use machine learning as part of your guided selling strategy, you make sure your conversations with customers are linear and the most relevant results are coming through.

Overall, while guided selling can seem complex, with third-party tools it’s not. These tools take sophisticated digital marketing concepts and make them manageable for any business.

Then, once you have the best tools, you can test and optimize to refine your strategy and build on it. You’ll be able to maximize the insights your garner every step of the way for a modern effective conversion-increasing business strategy.

Categories: Ecommerce