MarketLinc Blog | February 14, 2017

By Paul LaRochelle

Are there visitors on your site who you should be speaking with?

How Human-to-Human Contact Drives Sales

Shopping in the digital space is dramatically different from the traditional retail experience, but one thing hasn’t changed: people. Ultimately, it’s people who make purchasing decisions, and the human connection offered by a helpful customer sales rep can be as effective in digital commerce as it is in traditional retail.

Human contact is often an afterthought in the digital space, but it doesn’t have to be this way. You can gain an advantage and drive sales by offering H2H (human-to-human) experiences to your customers when they need it most. In fact, according to a 2016 Accenture study, 77% of U.S. consumers prefer dealing with human beings when they need advice or support during the online shopping process.

Closing the Gap With Connection

The gap between product browsing and the point-of-purchase moment of truth can seem minimal from the outside, but for the consumer, this is a crucial decision-making moment. It usually only takes a minute or two for visitors to navigate away from your site, leaving product options unexplored and shopping carts abandoned. When you take a passive approach and leave customers to their own devices at this point, you miss valuable opportunities to connect and engage.

H2H contact is a simple and effective means of closing that gap and increasing customer confidence, resulting in more purchase decisions and higher sales revenue. You can play a more direct, active role in your customers’ decision-making process by introducing live sales support and other H2H engagement points before visitors become frustrated and abandon their shopping carts.

How It Works

When you wander around a well-managed traditional retail store looking a bit lost, an employee will invariably materialize to answer your questions and assist you through the rest of your shopping journey. The MarketLinc H2H engagement service translates this helpful experience to the digital space.

Imagine that you’re looking to purchase a new smartwatch. You’re considering a specific option on a product page, but you can’t find the information you need. The product copy on the page is well written and informative, but it doesn’t specify whether this watch will sync with your specific e-reader tablet model. You look for answers on the product page and don’t find any, and there doesn’t seem to be any specific information available elsewhere on the site.

At this point, customers often disengage from the buying cycle, either by abandoning their shopping efforts entirely or by abandoning unpurchased items in a shopping cart. With the MarketLinc H2H engagement service, these potentially frustrated visitors get an alternative option to abandonment: a real-time human connection with someone in the know. With their questions answered and concerns addressed, those frustrated visitors become satisfied customers who can make a purchase with confidence– ultimately delivering incremental revenue that would have otherwise been lost.

What H2H Engagement Can Do For You

Connecting and engaging with visitors not only retains their attention but also helps build brand loyalty among new and existing customers. With a real-time H2H connection available, customers have a specific and efficient outlet for their shopping frustration. Rather than navigating away, they can stay focused on your product as they seek immediate answers and guidance from a real (and helpful) human being.

Some visitors don’t need engagement to make a purchasing decision, but those who do are proven to feel more empowered when they can connect to a person who will empathize and guide them to a final decision. The introduction of H2H opportunities at critical moments in the buying cycle can result in more sales, higher conversion and greater customer loyalty. All it takes is a little bit of human connection, and MarketLinc can make that happen in real time.