If you’re a small business owner, e-commerce is changing everything. In every aspect of business operations, you’ve got instant access to options that only recently were limited to big companies with deep pockets. This starts with a clean, fast, functional website: you used to have to hire a programmer to build one. Now, you can have your pick of half a dozen prime ecommerce platforms from Shopify to Squarespace to Wix, and have a store running almost out of the box. It used to take a full time employee to manage fulfillment and inventory, especially across several platforms. Now there are modestly priced apps and services to do it all for you, so you can focus on selling to your site visitors.
But until now, selling to website visitors has been the final frontier, where big businesses still have the edge over small ones. The standard visitor interaction involves the visitor reaching out with a question or concern which must be addressed before he buys. Typically, websites have had a web email contact form, where visitors could ask their questions, and sometimes a phone number to call. Aside from the time commitment involved in starting an email or phone conversation, which turns a lot of visitors off, visitors know that small businesses generally take longer to respond. A medium/large company with hundreds or thousands of employees can afford to have some of them standing by to answer phones and emails at all times. But a small business generally can’t. Phone calls go unanswered and unreturned, emails slip through the cracks and unreplied to for days. So website visitors generally just take their questions to google, and then end up buying from the competitor who’s got better search engine optimization.
Recently, more and more businesses have chat contact options for visitors. Small businesses can also set up chat contact, but this doesn’t solve the real problem. A chat contact app without someone on the other side just becomes an email contact form. And a small business doesn’t have the personnel to have someone standing by to take chats 24-7. So we’re back where we started.
And it gets worse! Visitors want to talk to a business the same way that they talk to their friends. If they’re on a mobile device, they want to be able to talk by SMS. If they prefer to talk by phone, they want a call back, not wait on hold, or leave a message. Most companies, big or small, don’t have anything like this. Big companies can arguably afford to frustrate their visitors, because they have the brand to lean on, and the marketing budget to make up for poor conversion rates with high volume. But to a small ecommerce business, every visitor matters, and every potential conversion is crucial. The visitor who looks around and leaves because he didn’t want to wait for an answer is gone forever.
Well, we’re here to change that forever. We built Bontact to let visitors talk to site owners through whatever channel they prefer: chat, SMS, callback or email, with Whatsapp and Telegram coming soon. A site owner with our app installed on his phone gets an instant notification for every contact request. And every contact request is a lead conversion-visitors leave their phone number or email, so that if you can’t talk to them right away, you can follow up with them later.
When your contact request volume grows to the point that you need help, just find a customer service freelancer you like on Odesk and assign them as a chat agent-we give you up to 7, so for a modest price, you can make sure that no website visitor with a question has to wait for an answer.
With Bontact, any small business can talk to their visitors and turn them into customers, better than today’s typical large corporation! We’ve levelled the e-commerce contact playing field for small businesses, and then some. Get our app today and don’t let another visitor leave your site with unanswered questions.
Baruch Kogan is the marketing director at Bontact, a company making multichannel eCommerce communications widgets. Bontact focuses on giving eCommerce business owners the tools they need to turn visitors into buyers.