In a digital world that yearns for quicker customer engagement, the use of artificial intelligence (AI) has progressed at a rapid rate over the past 1-2 years. It has proven to be a success in customer service, providing product recommendation as well as enticing the customer through relevant marketing campaigns. A chatbot is the software programme that uses AI to drive customer engagement with traffic sources online through Messenger Apps. Chatbots are the antidote to the slow and frustrating nature that a consumer could undergo by having to call the brand directly or through a call centre in the process leading up to and the purchasing of a product.
For affiliates, it is an opportunity to have an edge over others. Any software that is engineered to be an upgrade on customer service should always give a positive outlook on how they can continue to strive to become better in the performance marketing space. While South Africa is still lagging behind to Europe in the performance marketing industry, there are still a lot of influencers coming up online who sell the same product which translates to the challenge that most affiliates will face of engaging and catching the attention of consumers.
A simple example I could make is of a user who lands up on your website because they have discovered a product. In this example imagine you sell dresses as an online retailer and this user may look over a variety of dresses and in the end maybe purchase one. But what happens when they do not find the dress they are looking for on your site? The user will move to another website which might have what they looking for and you could lose out on a potential customer.
The main issue is to know that there are other websites promoting in the same vertical and it is important to stand out and create an alternative for customers when they cannot find the product of choice. Chatbots, through their software are able to suggest these options and entice communication with the customer offering merchants a better conversion rate.
To conclude, affiliates that integrate chatbots within their websites have a much better chance of increasing their income from affiliate marketing. By using Chatbots and standing out from the crowd, online merchants offer a better interaction between the customer and the site’s products. It’s an immediate solution or alternative one to the buyer and through that interaction, a user could click on the link of the product suggested by the chatbot and find what they are looking for more quickly. There are not a huge number of affiliates using the chatbot services as yet, but in the near future it will be a no-brainer.
Mawande Barnes – Affiliate Manager