Lately, there has been a lot of buzz about conversational e-commerce. That it’s about to transform the entire face of online customer service. That we soon might be having virtual customer service robots taking over our message boxes.
Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m open to this whole idea. I find it quite intriguing actually- not the robotic stalkers, but rather the endless possibilities that come with conversational ecommerce.
One notable model, for instance, leverages co-viewing technology to empower customer support. Quite a simple approach when you come to think of it, but one that can substantially impact both support and sales teams.
Now hang on a minute. How possible is this, really?
Well, stay with me as we take a journey through one reportedly outstanding tool that’s currently facilitating this.
Oct8ne Review: Overview
Oct8ne is a software that- for about a year and a half now- has tried changing the concept of conversational e-commerce in the United States, Spain, Latin America France and, now, Italy.
Its fundamental framework seemingly goes beyond the customer service “formula” we used to know.
How, you ask?
Basically, the solution takes advantage of real-time co-viewing technology on live chat to power interactive customer engagement. Its chat window can even share images and videos from customers directly to agents in case they have questions about a product.
Well, the concept behind all this is transforming online interaction to make it more like what we’re already used to in physical stores. In other words, Oct8ne tries to streamline conversations and consequently help you save time avoiding unnecessary explanations.
Interestingly, its shared window even allows both parties to interact with the images by zooming in, or possibly drawing on them with a virtual pen.
That said, it seems like Oct8ne is built to capitalize on increased interaction as a link between customer service and sales. It plays both roles since it also helps customer service departments to work as armies of vendors suggesting and recommending products.
In fact, according to Oct8ne’s development team, the chances of a successful sale multiply when agents make product suggestions. They further claim that their system boosts the number purchases by up to 15-20%, and cart abandonment is drastically reduced from 80% to 33%.
Ok, I know what you’re thinking at this point. How attainable is all this?
To determine that, this Oct8ne review analyzes all the critical features from both the agent and customer sides. We also look into its prices to determine if it’s actually worth leveraging.
Oct8ne Review: Features
For a conclusive assessment, we’ll look at what both your customers and agents get.
Shared Product View
Joint product viewing is seemingly Oct8ne’s principal feature. Basically, the visitor and agent can independently view the same item on their respective windows.
And you know what makes it unique? The simple fact that it happens in real-time. It completely eliminates those frustrating instances customers are forced to relay product descriptions back and forth.
As a result, your visitors and agents are able to save time by simply proceeding straight to the point.
Speaking of points, it turns out that Oct8ne doesn’t leave it at that. It goes ahead to solve another common problem where a visitor might not necessarily be interested in the whole product per se, but rather a specific component of the product.
What do I mean?
Ok, picture this. You’re thinking of buying a desktop PC- not just a system unit but also a display screen plus other peripheral components. Then it happens that you fancy acquiring each of these parts from different manufacturers to achieve a hybrid build. Unfortunately, the site you’re dealing with has displayed their numerous PC items as complete builds from individual manufacturers. You can’t find, for instance, a keyboard or mouse displayed separately.
So, what do you do when you get in touch with an agent?
If the site runs Oct8ne, you’ll be able to focus on even the smallest components by pointing, possibly zooming in, and even panning to move on to other devices. And each of these actions is replicated in real-time on the agent’s side.
As a result, you get to explore multiple components of the same product and make relevant inquiries without beating around the bush.
Still with me on the PC-shopping case?
Ok, say you’re particularly interested in a 32-inch display screen from Sony, to combine it with an HP system unit that runs on an Intel Corei7 processor.
How do you find these two in a catalog that stretches through hundreds of pages?
Normally, you’d be forced to leave the co-viewer panel to run a search on your own then get back to the support agent. With Oct8ne, however, you can sort, filter and search items right off the bat without closing the chat.
It embeds itself into the site’s default search and filter tool to generate accurate results that mirror the actual site search tool.
Joint co-viewing seems like a thoughtful support strategy that might win you a couple of sales. But, to be honest, it presents a whole new challenge.
You see, a visitor might enjoy the engagement process so much that they decide to proceed with multiple inquiries over an extended period of time.
But what happens when the chat finally ends? Will the visitor be able to remember everything from step one, and apply the subsequent knowledge in the item selection process?
Let’s face it. We do not have supercomputer brains. So, chances are that the visitor might forget a couple of things along the way. And that translates to lost sales.
Oct8ne attempts to address this problem by integrating cart controls into the panel. Visitors can add products to the cart straight from their panel as they proceed with the chat. If you like a particular item suggested by an agent, just click and add to the cart. It really is that simple.
Then guess what? If you don’t find it important to include a likable item in the cart, Oct8ne allows you to alternatively add it to your wishlist- in case you’d like to revisit it later.
By now, I presume you know what they say about customer engagement. That it establishes an emotional connection between a business and their prospect.
Fair enough. But, you know what else they say? That the higher the engagement level, the more customers will buy, the further they’ll promote a business, and the more they’ll demonstrate loyalty.
That said, I find digital engagement channels like email to be fairly effective. But the simple truth is- nothing beats live chat.
As a matter of fact, a survey by J.D Power established that an overwhelming majority of customers prefer live chat- 42% compared to 23% for email and 16% for social media.
So it seems like Oct8ne danced to the customers’ tune by making live chat the principal engagement channel. Queries raised by visitors are, therefore, answered faster and more accurately.
Ever walked into a shop and said something like “I’m looking for the model that resembles the one I saw on TV,” then its agents threw confused glances at each other?
That’s not the outcome you’d hope for because we all hate describing stuff we think sales agents should know already. However, you’d certainly have a much easier time describing your needs in-store compared to an online shop.
Oct8ne attempts to resolve this issue through an image upload functionality. Visitors only need to click and upload their images to let them do the talking. After all, an image is worth a thousand words. Or is it?
Shared Product View
As we’ve previously discussed, joint product view is a two-way thing. It applies to agents just as much as it does to visitors.
In other words, apart from replicating their screen with the visitor’s side, agents can zoom into various elements, pan, and point at stuff to explain features accordingly.
But that’s not all. Agents can also see pretty much see the visitor actions, and consequently drop a couple of notes as customer reminders.
Here’s the thing with support chats- they are not like emails, which you simply reply in a couple of seconds then wait for a reply to come through after some hours. A chat takes quite some time, especially when you’re engaging an unusually curious warm lead.
Now, imagine talking to someone as your shift is winding up. Would you speed things up by giving brief and incomplete answers, hoping to conclude the discussion in time?
Ok, picture another situation. You’re helping a customer with something then it turns out that you’re not exactly knowledgeable about the topic. Would you shout from across the room to reach out to your expert colleague for assistance?
Well, admittedly, none of these situations would pan out very well for you. That’s why Oct8ne seemingly provides inter-agent tools to seamlessly transfer chat sessions to your fellow colleagues.
In the end, you’re able to maintain an uninterrupted line of customer support.
It goes without saying that online consumers hate being forced to wait. That’s why, in fact, 79% of the fraction that prefers live chat enjoy it because of its instant response.
But then again, it turns out that businesses are not that good at meeting such expectations. The average live chat response time is about two minutes. And that’s if it’s even answered in the first place, considering 21% of all live chat requests are ignored.
The bottom line?
Firstly, it’s critically important to answer all chat requests. Then while you’re at it, minimize the response times as much as possible.
Well, Oct8ne provides an engagement toolbox to help agents achieve that. In addition to a library of frequently used phrases, it comes with an image upload function, voice connection capability, sending of forms, plus lead information capturing.
As you attempt to optimize your responsiveness with the engagement toolbox, you’ll notice that the corresponding efficiency levels also depend on the number of chat sessions your agents are handling simultaneously.
While your entire system might go without a request for hours or days, the fact is, when it rains it pours. So the sessions might exceed the number of agents on standby from time to time.
Thankfully, Oct8ne allows users to systematically switch between numerous chats. Then it goes ahead to combine that with a color-coded framework to manage the sessions based on priority.
Customer Insight Panel
Make no mistake. Live chats are not all about answering customer queries. While perfecting that is commendable, successful conversion requires more.
In essence, you need to employ some finesse in the whole engagement process by strategically approaching customers based on their interests.
Now, this is precisely where lead information comes in. So, to help you avoid the embarrassment of taking shots in the dark, Oct8ne provides with a pretty strong customer insight panel. It essentially displays relevant basic customer information like shopping cart items, wishlist, and history of items viewed in real-time.
Assisted Catalog Search and Cart Controls
Finding an item in a standard online store typically takes a couple of clicks through the catalog. And that’s only if you’re lucky enough to recall its precise position right off the bat.
Admit it. Even sales agents, more often than not, cannot remember the exact product link off the top of their head.
So, Oct8ne offers assisted catalog search to help you conveniently comb through the entire inventory in a matter of microseconds. You’re then able to direct customers to relevant product suggestions.
To top it off, customers don’t even need to add the resultant items to their carts from the visitor’s side. You can effortlessly handle this with agent cart controls, which also come in handy when you need to add to wishlist on behalf of the customer.
Oct8ne Review: Pricing
Oct8ne is available in four plans:
- Free- built for businesses that are starting out with online customer service.
- Lite- offered to businesses that are seeking to boost their sales through visual customer service.
- Pro- for businesses looking to empower their customer service teams by transforming them into sales agents.
- Enterprise- developed exclusively for large enterprises.
The good news here is that the Lite package is available completely free of charge for 14 days. And they won’t as you for credit card credentials.
Although there is a free package for starters, the pricing for Lite, Pro, and Enterprise are not available on the pricing schedule. You have to get in touch with Oct8ne's sales team for quotations.
Who Should Consider Using Oct8ne?
After reviewing its features, Oct8ne seems like quite a strong tool for all types of businesses running live chat support- beginners, small, mid-sized, and large enterprises. The only two things you need are- a website and well-trained support agents.
If you happen to try it out, feel free to share your experience in the comment section.