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7 E-Commerce Conversion Optimization Tactics To Help You Cut Down Ad Spend

As of last year, approximately 81% of people in Australia shopped online. By 2021, this number is projected to reach 22 million people.

The average conversion rate for ecommerce businesses ranges between 1% and 2%, with global figures standing at 2.58% for 2019 Q2.

This means that building an ecommerce business and making it sustainable, won’t be an easy task. Aside from determining what products to sell and how to source them, enticing visitors to your site with paid advertising takes time and dedication.

Marketers are investing in digital campaigns in an attempt to boost revenue, with the digital ad spend projected to reach approximately $8 million this year alone.

That being said, advertising can only encourage them to visit your online store. In an increasingly competitive business environment, digital advertising saturates the ecommerce realm and can only do so much to convince unqualified leads to convert to loyal customers.

In this article, you’ll find seven conversion optimization tactics that can help you reduce your advertising spend and drive new customers through your conversion funnel.

But first, let’s dive into the fundamentals:

Understanding Online Store Conversion Rates

To accurately reflect your ecommerce conversion goals, you need to define the KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) that your business will use to determine your success.

A conversion rate refers to the percentage of website visitors that complete a desired action. Strictly speaking, ecommerce businesses define their conversion rate as the percentage of website visitors who purchase products from their online stores. However, other metrics include:

  • A visitor adding products to their cart
  • A visitor adding an item to their wish list
  • Social media shares
  • Email signups
  • Any other KPI your brand finds valuable

7 E-Commerce Conversion Optimization Tactics

Here is how you can most of the increasing traffic and increase your conversion rate, without increasing your ad spend.

1. Use High-Quality Images And Video On Your Product Pages

Unlike brick-and-mortar stores, consumers can’t touch or feel products on your ecommerce page. This can discourage purchases – especially if your website displays low-resolution images.

Here, displaying detailed, high-resolution product images and videos can help customers visualize your products better and increase your conversion rates. Pictures, after all, speak a thousand words.

When designing images for your product pages, try to cover the following:

  • Give the customer a clear understanding of what it is, and exactly what they will get (functional images)
  • Help the customer understand how to use it (explainer images).
  • Help the customer imaging themselves using it (lifestyle images).

To see a fantastic example of all three – check out

2. Tweak And Test Your Ecommerce Checkout Process

If your checkout process is too long or too complicated, you risk losing a large portion of potential purchases and website traffic to confusion.

Here, you must test your website checkout process using A/B tests to tweak the process based on your customers’ preferences. With over 60% of companies stating that A/B testing is crucial for conversion rate optimization (CRO) – if you’re still thinking about it, you are already lagging behind.

For starters, you can limit what can be typed into specific fields to make it easier for customers to complete the process.

This way, when a consumer fills in their credit card details, they are already aware of the format they need to fill it in. This helps make it easier to read and harder to mess up.

To optimize it further, digital wallets like PayPal Express, Apple Pay, and Amazon Pay allow buyers to sign in with their account information and pre-populates their credentials for them.

Not only do these optimizations help to make checkout faster, but it also helps to reduce the risk of errors when processing payments.

3. Personalisation

PwC’s annual Global Entertainment and Media Outlook highlights how the online consumer experience is becoming progressively personal as brands customize their offerings to focus on personal preferences and purchasing patterns.

If your store has an extensive suite of items for sale, you might find that wish lists, custom preferences, and tailored recommendations for consumer goods such as clothing can help customers sift through the plethora of options available to help and shorten their decision-making.

90% of leading marketers even go as far as to say that personalisation contributes to their profitability and helps to shorten the path to purchase.

The good news is that marketers today can leverage ample consumer data and personalise their conversion funnels to align with prospects’ location, buying behavior, and preferences. Here, a personalisation engine is key to ensure you can achieve this at scale – and thus develop a deep understanding of your customers’ needs and wants. If you’re not at a scale where a personalization engine makes sense, try out Messenger funnels which will allow you to take a personal approach with a big tech budget.

The bottom line? People love personalised experiences and will appreciate your brand taking the time out to cater to their preferences.

4. Hidden Costs

One of the single biggest causes of checkout abandonment is unexpected fees and costs appearing at the payment stage. Most notably, shipping fees.

In our experience, having to pay for shipping is one of the biggest bugbears for consumers (together with delivery time). If possible, consider including the cost of shipping in your product prices. If that isn’t possible, then we recommend setting a FREE shipping level around about your average order value, and making shipping options and costs transparent as early as possible.

You can also try techniques like exit intent popups on the cart that offer free shipping in exchange for purchase today.

5. Provide Valuable Content

Advertising can only go so far to build intrigue around your products and services – and get people to check your offerings on your website. Therefore, the more value you can provide your consumers on your website, the more likely they are to complete purchases.

Not only does this include product copy, but it also refers to the use of blog content to build authority within your niche, inform consumers on your products, and engage your target audience.

If you use a merchant-provided copy for your product descriptions, consider making a shift to a more personalised copy that connects with your buyers, and sells the product instead of simply describing what it is.

Educational content – that offers consumers the quickest solution to their problem – will ultimately also help to increase your website’s organic SEO traffic. Start with your home page and product pages with the following focus:

  • Prioritize on the benefits of products instead of their features
  • Leverage selling points in customer reviews to back claims
  • Emphasize UVPS (unique value propositions) of your brand
  • Make the returns and refund policy transparent from the get-go

The effective product copy can help customers visualize the benefit of buying your product and the value it will add to their lives.

6. Provide Product Testimonials If Applicable

According to BigCommerce, 92% of customers make it a point to read online reviews before they make a purchase.

Familiar with the phrase, ‘Facts Tell, Stories Sell’? It was coined by Anthony Hill to describe how narrative merchants used to connect with consumers through stories they can relate to. Product testimonials go beyond just listing down the benefits of a certain product. Testimonials (be sure to use real ones!) can do wonders to build credibility and trust with consumers.

Consequently, 92% of online consumers read reviews and testimonials for a business before making a purchase. Similarly, 88% of consumers trust online endorsements as much as personal recommendations.

So if you want to prove the genuineness of your platform, entice your current and past buyers to leave you with reviews for your business, products and services.

7. Show Security Badges

One of the biggest fears consumers face when shopping online is releasing their credit card credentials when checking out – and for a good reason! Only recently, KrebsonSecurity learned of the sale of four million stolen credit cards tied to security breaches at restaurant chains.

When online shoppers view security badges in open display, it reassures them that their credit card details are secure and confidential. It also helps to reduce cart abandonment and improve your eCommerce conversions – because they guarantee to keep online transactions safe.

Here are some other ways you can make your e-commerce platform safer for customers:

  • Install SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) at checkout and across your website
  • Display small images of credit card logos such as PayPal, Visa, and MasterCard to reassure customers that you use customer-trusted payment solutions. As of now, 47% of online shoppers in Australia use credit cards to buy products online.
  • Ensure you have an active account with companies providing your security badges. Avoid adding the images if you aren’t secure

Key Takeaway

Last year Auspost forecast that by 2021, 12% of consumer spending would be conducted online. However, online ecommerce in Australia saw this take effect in March 2020 – and it’s only expected to go up from there.

The key takeaway here is that the conversion game doesn’t necessarily end after a successful campaign. In fact, it doesn’t end when you cement your reputation in the ecommerce realm, either.

It is an ongoing process, with small tweaks in your e-commerce platform not only boosting your bottom line but also helping you optimize your back-end conversion rate. Given that you now have a baseline average conversion rate for your e-commerce site, you can better allocate your advertising spend to entice new sales.

As your eCommerce Growth Partners, we recognize that optimizing store conversion rate is a critical enabler for scaling your business. Having battle tested just about every conversion rate tactic there is, we’ve developed a comprehensive 135-point conversion assessment and a unique proprietary template for Shopify that routinely puts our customers in the top 0.5% of all online stores by conversion rate.

If conversion rate is an issue for your store, contact us today about our audit and site elevation services, and together let’s get your store putting more dollars back in your pocket!

How to Combine Chat Marketing & Email to Skyrocket Your Holiday Season Sales

The holiday seasons are the prime time for ecommerce sales. An omnichannel strategy that uses email and chat marketing may be what you need to give your sales a boost.

According to data shared by WordStream, 80% of holiday shoppers check the web before they make a purchase. 

Better yet, a third say that online ads and promotions lead directly to them making holiday purchases.

The point is that the holidays represent one of the strongest sales periods for your ecommerce store.

That leaves a simple question:

Which strategy works best for getting your products in front of more shoppers?

Some may stick with the tried and tested email marketing techniques they’ve used for years. Others may adopt chat marketing in an effort to boost sales.

But what if you could use them together?

The Big Misconception

So many people see chat marketing as a way to replace email marketing. They cite the larger open and response rates to make the claim that email marketing isn’t effective anymore.

That’s not the case.

The big misconception here is that you can only use one or the other. 

But the truth is that an omnichannel marketing campaign will get your store in front of more people. Plus, it will help you to guide potential customers through your sales funnel even faster.

The end result?

More sales made faster as a result of combining chat marketing and email. 

You just need to know how to do it. Here are four examples that will help you to create a powerful strategy for the holiday seasons.

Example #1 – Collecting Accurate Data Via Chatbot For Use in an Email Campaign

The traditional email marketing campaign goes a little something like this.

You advertise a lead magnet to your target audience. People click on the ad and get prompted to enter their details in a form to get the magnet. Those details go into your CRM and you plug the lead into an automated email campaign.

That’s fine when all of the data’s accurate and up-to-date. But user errors can result in the lead never getting contacted.

Furthermore, many may decide against sending their details across once they see the form they need to fill in.

This is where chat marketing comes in.

With a chatbot, you’re able to gather customer details instantly at the point when they express interest. You can also program your bot to ask leads to confirm the data that they send across.

This means more accurate data and fewer leads getting cold feet. As a result, your email campaigns reach more people, which results in more sales.

Example #2 – Use Chat Marketing to Encourage Email Subscriptions

What happens when somebody comments on a Facebook post?

In most cases, very little happens. You may get  new follower who get post updates, and may like your page at some point.

But this moment of engagement you gives you an ideal opportunity to start a conversation.

You can use a chatbot to make contact with the new follower from the moment that they comment. 

That bot could then ask the follower if they wish to subscribe to your newsletter. It can even ask about the specific topics that the follower has an interest in.

From there, you can send targeted newsletters via email to move those followers through your funnel. And because you contacted them via chat first, they know that these emails will contain relevant information for them.

This means they’re more likely to open them, which gives you an opportunity to make offers based on their interests.

Example #3 – Lead Nurturing

Many potential customers need a little nurturing before they’ll make a purchase.

When you combine email and chat marketing, you’re able to approach this nurturing on two fronts.

With email, you can send more detailed information over an extended period to keep your audience engaged. For example, you could share valuable insights and content that helps the user remember and trust your brand. You can also use email to share important documents that help with a potential purchase.

With chat marketing, you can be more detailed and spontaneous to a customer’s enquiry. A chatbot can handle FAQ that the customer may have. Plus, you can program it to pick up on words on questions that could trigger a specific conversation flow to solve the customer’s enquiry instantly.

For example, let’s say your ecommerce store sells clothes and you have a customer who has questions about picking a size.

The chatbot could handle the basic questions related to the sizes you have in stock. It could then deliver a size chart as well as a coupon to incentivise a purchase. If the customer doesn’t purchase right away, no harm done. Your chatbot can tag the user in your email program and arrange to send out new season’s lines to re-engage them.

You’re providing information on two fronts, which moves the customer closer to making a purchase.

Example #4 – Creating More Personalised Campaigns

We touched on the importance of personalisation in our second example. Your chatbot can ask about specific topics of interest, which can feed into an email marketing campaign.

And according to data from Infosys, personalisation has a huge effect on buying decisions. In a survey, they found that 59% of people say that receiving personalised information influenced their choices.

BabyCentre UK highlights how this works in practice.

Their chatbot uses Facebook Messenger to quiz parents about their specific needs. It then delivers basic tips and tricks via Messenger while also triggering emails based on those needs.

From there, they can make specific offers based on those pre-identified needs.

Chat marketing allows you to build engagement with a lead long before they receive any emails. You can then use the data collected to ensure they receive targeted emails based on what they tell the bot.

Chat Marketing and Email in Tandem

The main message here is that you don’t have to think in terms of one or the other. While chat marketing is a new and exciting tool, email still has an important place in your marketing strategy for long-term engagement.

And when used together, you’re able to target leads with more relevant information on both channels. Ultimately, that leads to faster lead nurturing and more sales.

The critical piece of this multi-channel approach is keeping your CRM up to date on both channels to enable multiple touchpoints without mixed messages or spammy campaigns. 

Beyond Points can help you leverage chat and email to create a powerful omnichannel marketing campaign.

To find out more, message us now to schedule a strategy session.

How to Turn Bricks to Clicks: Killer Strategies for Leveraging your Physical Store & Web Stores for More Sales

If you operate both a physical shop as well as a web store you have a huge strategic advantage over people selling in just one location.  In this article we show you how to maximize it.

Consumer behaviour is in a constant state of change.  Demographics, purchasing needs and price points are just some of the factors that influence how consumers choose to research and make purchases.  Broadly, you’ll probably hear that millennials prefer to use physical stores as a ‘showrooms’ while preferring to make purchases online. Gen X’ers are the opposite, preferring to browse online but then buy in store.  People buy clothes in store, but tech online. And so it goes.    

We should address some home truths though.  While online shopping has shown consistent growth for the past decade, over 90% of all retail purchases are still made in store. Plus, more in-store shoppers purchase additional items than they do when shopping online.  That means that if you have both a physical AND online presence, you have a powerful strategic advantage over competitors offering similar services on a single channel.

The new game is not about cannibalizing your in-store revenue, or undercutting your own prices to compete with online sellers.  It’s about maximizing your leverage across both channels to greater share of wallet. Its about ensuring you’re front of mind when customers make their next purchase, whether online or in-store.

So, how can you capitalize on your multi-channel presence?

Here are six killer techniques.

#1 – Leverage Chat-to-Store Marketing

Having a special promotion or sale in store?  The key to success is ensuring sufficient awareness.  Most stores leverage print media, TV or Radio to get the news out.  The problem is, people are constantly bombarded with this kind of marketing.  

Instead, think about leveraging organic visits to your web store, Facebook page, instagram etc to capture attention.  But put a strong call to action in your message to bring them into a Messenger conversation to tell them more about the event, the deals and why they need to visit.  

Just the act of stepping through a conversation in Messenger (with the help of a bot to automate it) is more memorable than a fleeting commercial.  But go one step further. At the end of the conversation, give them an exclusive coupon, ticket or image they need to present in-store to get ‘the best’ deal.  People love exclusivity! Amplify it with Facebook Ads to a targeted audience, and its many times more effective (and cheaper) than traditional above-the-line advertising. 

#2 – Exploit Store-To-Chat Promotions

Not everyone wants to buy in-store.  They may have come in to browse for ideas, try a few things on, or just get an idea of price.  Plus, as we outlined above, many people prefer to research in a physical store but buy online. 

Make sure they leave your shop with a reason to buy from you online. 

You should build this into your in-store advertising. For example, you could have posters, flyers etc in your store that advertise exclusive online discounts.  Again though, don’t just direct them to your home page. Attract them into a Messenger conversation.

The resulting conversation will educate the customer about the deal, the benefits of owning the product, and provide that all-important feeling of exclusivity.  Having taken these steps, ask yourself how likely are they to purchase a similar product from another store when they’re seen the item in your shop, chatted about it in Messenger and then been offered your exclusive deal?

Best of all, you now have the customer in your online audience to reach out to again in the future, building you a ‘free’ audience for Strategy #1!

Technique #3 – Do More With Post-Purchase Print

Taking a sale anywhere is great.  Taking sales that lead to more sales is even better!

Think about all of the physical items that someone takes from your store that aren’t direct advertising materials. Your product packaging, shopping bags, receipts / dockets and even your price labels are open spaces ripe for engaging the customer when they get home.  

QR codes have become commonplace. Almost all smartphones have native QR scanners built-in now, yet there’s something surprisingly intriguing about them.  People love scanning them, especially if they can get access to the best deals, insider news, or exclusive early access to new releases. 

Think about how you can ‘gate’ these deals, encouraging social sharing, Facebook followers or user generated content. Do that, and you’re well on your way to exploding your online community from in-store visits!

Technique #4 – Wrap it!

Many brands wrap their delivery vehicles, and business owners often brand their cars as a ‘free source of awareness. 

Like post-purchase print materials, include a QR code in that wrap with an accompanying message that builds intrigue. For example:

“Chat with us online to get access to exclusive deals and discounts.”

Somebody who sees that may whip out their phone to scan the code. As soon as they do, Messenger opens up and you’ve started a conversation.

Have some fun with it.  Why not wrap your staff?  Get a QR printed on the back of staff shirts that says ‘scan me for the best deals’!  Apart from breaking the ice with the shop assistant, how much more memorable is that experience?  You can deliver a deal for redemption right there in-store, ask them about their visit later that day, and even educate them about your season’s offers from the comfort of their post-shopping armchair.

Technique #5 – Chat For Reviews

Reviews are the lifeblood of online sales.  But are you aware of just how much online reviews are influencing your in-store visits?  Did you know that over 50% of people say they frequently read reviews before visiting a store?  A massive 72% of people read reviews before purchasing from your online store.

Whether your customers purchase online or via your physical store, following up after purchase to get feedback leading to review is more important than ever. Quite simply there has never been a more effective way to encourage reviews than through the Messenger channel.  Whether you’re seeking ‘internal’ reviews on Shopify or ‘external’ reviews on Google, Facebook, Tripadvisor etc, your bot can get you more social proof that can lead to more in-store visits and higher online conversion.

Technique #6 – Keep Selling After Hours

Your brick & mortar stores close at night, but your online store is open 24/7.  

Make sure people know they can explore what you have to offer even when the ‘closed’ sign is hanging.  Have you thought about adding a poster to your door directing them to your site? Or better yet – a QR code to open up a chat?

What about your on-hold message?   People HATE being on hold, but they need their questions answered, so why not direct them to your chatbot?  Most customers will appreciate the option and jump straight online to talk to you. The real-time responses they get from your chatbot deliver a far better service experience than waiting on hold. Plus, they’re now in your Messenger subscribers and may be open to further offers down the line.

Just a quick note on Live Chat here.  While your chatbot can and should handle the majority of simple enquiries, it is imperative to have a real person on-hand to jump in and provide instant responses. More to the point, your live agents can answer enquiries and encourage people to visit the store for a personal experience, communicate with in-store staff to expect the visit and get the items ready for a speedy transaction. How about that for an experience?

From Physical to Messenger

The purpose of these tips isn’t to replace your brick and mortar store with online sales.

It’s to show you what’s possible if you use the physical and digital in tandem. Your physical marketing materials give you a great opportunity to pull customers into your online funnel, and visa versa.

And once they’re in your Messenger flow, you’ve opened a dialogue that can continue whether they’re in-store or not.

All you need to do now is develop a chatbot and create a chat marketing conversation flow.

If that sounds intimidating, you can rely on Beyond Points to help.

We specialise in using Facebook Messenger and chat marketing to increase retail sales. We’d love to talk about how we can help you to implement these techniques.

Schedule a strategy session via chat to get started.

The Future of Marketing is Chat. 7 Key Strategy Takeaways from #Conversations2019 (No.7 changes everything!)

We’re fresh off the plane from 3 days of exhilarating content at Conversations2019 in Austin Texas. Manychat’s second annual Conference was full of actionable insights to help drive your business forward, and in this post we review the key take outs.

Kicking off, it looks like 2020 is set to be a milestone year for Messenger Marketing. According to Mikael Yang, CEO at Manychat, monthly active chat app users will surpass the number of social media chat users for the first time. That’s more than just an interesting statistic. As marketers, we must always understand where our customers are likely to be hanging out. If you’re selling products or services to consumers, your customers are almost certainly spending time in chat apps, which means you NEED to be engaging with them there.

Aside from China where Wechat rules the roost, the majority of the western world has adopted either Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp or Instagram Messaging as their platform of choice, and many people use multiple channels simultaneously. All 3 of these channels are properties of Facebook, who have announced seamless interoperability between them will be released next year. That means that a Messenger user will be able to chat with a Whatsapp user and visa versa without leaving their app of choice. For you as a business owner or marketer it means unprecedented and seamless access to just about all your customers from one single platform!

But it gets better!

At the conference, Manychat unveiled one of the biggest advancements in the history of marketing systems. No longer confined to just Facebook Messenger, Manychat now supports engagement via email and SMS. This is exciting news because it means we’ll be able to leverage multiple channels as traffic sources to filter customers back onto our Messenger conversations. Based on either the customer data we hold, or the user’s own preferences, we’ll be able to seamlessly switch to a second or even third channel if a conversations gets dropped in Messenger. This neatly solves the challenges faced by Facebook’s upcoming messaging restrictions.

While native email messaging capability is already available for all countries, SMS integration is currently only available for US customers. Technically the implementation is done, but Manychat are working through the legal and compliance restrictions around SMS in each location. We quietly had a word to Manychat Co-Founder Anton Gorin, who let us know that they expect SMS services to be available in Australia by the end of the year (2019).

Messenger Marketing is old news. Long Live Chat Marketing!

Across the course of 3 days, we heard from a diverse set of speakers, including the ‘Queen of Facebook’ Mari Smith, Randi Zuckerberg, Neil Patel, Ezra Firestone, and many others. Topics covered everything from how to create a chat campaign to sell Girl Guides Cookies, to using Messenger and eWallet to sell $7m of training subscriptions in just 7 days. The general consensus was that Messenger funnels are out-performing other channels, often by as much as 10X.

If Messenger is the best converting sales funnel, the key question all marketers should be asking is ‘whats the best way to drive more traffic into it?’

In summarizing all the presentations, we highlight 7 key strategies you should explore.

Strategies for Customer / Traffic Acquisition

1. Facebook Ads to Messenger.

This is not new, but we start here because we consider this to be the core strategy for customer acquisition.  Send To Messenger and Comment Growth Tool strategies are the most effective overall as they offer the lest friction to user experience, therefore the lowest CPA.
You can also use the same conceptual strategy on standard Facebook posts. At the conference, Manychat announced a new ‘All Posts’ growth tool, which means you can invite customers into a conversations from any comment on any post. That’s pretty cool for organic (unpaid) traffic.

One important point about organic posts.  Both Mari Smith and Neil Patel showed statistics indicating the significant demise of organic reach.  Standard (non promoted) posts now only reach about 6% of your Audience, while post engagement has fallen consistently for the past 4 years.  Video content is most widely distributed, followed by static images, while link posts are actively suppressed (because Facebook wants users to stay on-platform).  Mari recommends about 70% video, 20% static image, and 10% link posts in your mix.

2. Facebook Live to Messenger.

A key message that came through in several presentations was that the only place ‘faceless’ brands can exist is on Amazon. Your product or service brand is heavily underpinned by your own personal brand. With the exponential growth of video in recent years, live casting has become an important strategy. Apart from being able to engage with live viewers, you’re creating video assets which can be used to generate engagement and sales long after the live has ended.

Leveraging Messenger to build an audience and remind them of the upcoming live event beforehand is a great way to gain momentum, while delivering show notes and other content using a comment growth tool is a powerful way to transition viewers into subscribers. What’s new here is that Facebook is showing significant love to Live’s, so it’s possibly the best way to get organic traffic into your Messenger channel from within Facebook.

3. Blog to Messenger.

According to Neil Patel, for many businesses the first interaction new customers have with your brand is via a blog post. Indeed, statistics show that Blog posts are generating more initial touchpoints between brands and users in 2019 than ever before.

Instead of creating a CTA at the end of the post that takes the user to a landing page or email sign-up, we recommend creating a compelling CTA that brings the potential customer into a Messenger conversation. That could be to deliver a lead magnet, take a quiz, or make a direct offer.

4. LinkedIn to Messenger.

If you’re in the B2B space, leveraging the targeting power of LinkedIn is a no-brainer. But did you realise that Messenger can form a powerful and highly engaging way to deliver content? LinkedIn has its own messaging channel, but open and action rates there are much lower than Messenger. When posting, doing live casting or contacting potential leads, providing links to Messenger (using REFURL growth tools) can give you an extra channel to communicate. Plus, it can potentially convert your LinkedIn prospects to active conversations at a much higher rate.

5. Leverage Website Live Chat

It has been shown that for eCommerce brands in particular, having a 24/7 live chat support option can deliver a 13-30% increase in website conversion. Embedding the Messenger live chat to your site enables you to deliver BOT interaction for customer FAQs. However, your goal for this service should be to handle the majority of enquiries automatically, but have real humans available to jump in and provide sales support. Be prepared though, delivering a templated ‘out of hours’ message can lead to a bad user experience, leading your potential customer to choose a competitor.

You can learn more about how to leverage Live Chat to make sales here.

Strategies for Re-Engagement

6. Optimizing funnel performance with dynamic retargeting

One of the incredible features of Manychat is the ability to dynamically add (or remove) individuals from a custom audience in Facebook depending on actions they take. This is powerful because it means that you can re-engage customers depending on very specific criteria. In this way, you can handle objections and enable customers to pick up conversations from where they left off.

The consensus among the top minds in Facebook advertising though, is that Sponsored Messages (which appear in the user’s Messenger feed) are not delivering the best results right now. Facebook is working hard to fix this, but for now we recommend using one of the traditional Ad objectives with your dynamic audiences.

7. Dynamic Cross-Channel Re-Engagement

Our modern world is full of distractions, and it’s easy for even motivated customers to lose track of a conversation before making the sale. For this reason, it’s always been good practice to include time-based reminders inside Messenger to prod the customer to the next step.

However the integration to SMS and email announced this week enables you to easily re-engage the customer across more than just the Messenger channel. For example, if 24 hours has passed since your last interaction, drop an SMS reminder through with a link back to the conversation in Messenger. Then you can revert to email for more long-term engagement, perhaps delivering some additional value to help handle any objections your customer may have.

You’ll also be able to use these other channels for when you want to send messages that don’t conform to Facebook’s Terms of Service, including promotional messages, coupon reminders and the like. This enables you to still engage on the platform without worrying about spammy broadcasts or losing your Facebook account.

Right now these features are in first release, and there are a few bugs Manychat still need to smooth out. Email formatting isn’t very rich, and there’s currently no way to adjust the sender profile (reply-to). There are also question marks around unsubscribing and whether if a person unsubscribes from email they also unsubscribe from your Messenger list. The team assures us they are working hard on all these items, and should have a resolution soon.


The strategies laid out above, plus the development of Manychat’s new Chat Marketing ecosystem mean there’s never been a better time to leverage Facebook Messenger as a critical part of your marketing strategy. Successful execution of an omnichannel strategy requires a thoughtful and considered approach in relation to your customer journeys. Which traffic sources will you leverage, and how will you engage a conversation? How will you re-engage, and which channel should you use?

For a free no-obligation strategy consult for your business, contact us in Facebook Messenger today.

More Changes to Facebook Messenger – Is It Still a Growth Channel for eComm?

Just a few months ago we reviewed a round of sweeping changes to the rules of engagement on the Facebook Messenger Channel (see the last post here). This week, Facebook have updated their policies even further. The short story is that Facebook are taking increasingly strong moves to ‘protect’ their users from being spammed (and finding ways to make more money while they do that).

In this post we analyse what these latest changes mean, and how they might change your thinking regards marketing your eComm business.

Let’s take a look at what’s changing…

Here’s what a spokesperson for Facebook had to say…

“At Messenger, we want to help people and businesses connect in meaningful ways. We remain committed to helping businesses continue to grow and thrive on our platform. That’s why we are making updates to our platform to improve the user experience for people, and to help businesses drive more effective outcomes on Messenger. ManyChat has been a valuable partner in business messaging and we look forward to growing our partnership with them.”

Sue Prentice
– Ze’ev Rosenstein, Head of People to Business Messaging, Messenger

You can read the policy change log here (check out the August 29/2019 post), but let’s take a quick look at what’s changing effective January 15 2020:

  • Revised Standard Messaging Window Policy: Going forward the previous 24+1 window will be changed to just a 24 hour window. Brands that wish to re-engage after the 24 hour window has passed should use Sponsored Messages.
  • Introducing More Streamlined Message Tags: The original set of messaging tags that described what type of messaging you were sending is being sliced down from 17 to just 4: post-purchase updates, event reminders, account updates, and human agent (basically customer service)
  • Subscription Messaging: Will be restricted only to News organisations going forward. Presumably that means brands who have applied for and received subscription permissions to date will be revoked come January 15 th .

What these changes mean..

If marketers were up in arms about the last changes, this round like likely to cause a ‘sky is falling’ type reaction! Basically, Facebook have taken a careful look at how marketers had adjusted to the last round of changes and found that too many people failed to adjust their practice, resulting in a bad customer experience.

Honestly, from what we’ve seen we tend to agree. Even high-profile businesses failed to abide by Facebook policy (often completely ignoring) the 24+1 rule.

You know who you are!

From 15 th January 2020, eComm brands & Amazon sellers (and just about everyone else for that matter) will simply be restricted to messaging within 24 hours each time a customer engages with your Bot (except for order and event updates).

This set of changes really shakes things up. For savvy marketers, that’s GOOD! Here’s what you should be thinking about….

Double Down on Your Messenger Sales Funnels

Yes, these changes mean that Messenger won’t be the starting point for customer re-engagement, but it also means that the channel will be kept uncluttered for consumers. Less noise on the channel means it will continue to outperform all other channels for open rates and action rates.

It’s still the BEST performing sales funnel tool. We recently conducted some funnel conversion research on the typical techniques used by eCommerce sites to generate sales.

As you can see from the industry averages, compared to the average performance on most eComm funnels, Beyond Points Messenger funnels are at least 2X as effective as Clickfunnels, 8X better than Google Shopping and a massive 32X better than email to website funnels.

Messenger still knocks it out of the park in terms of sales funnels, and these changes give us confidence that it will continue to do so!

Focus on Omni-Channel Re-engagement

Rather than reaching out to customers inside Messenger, Facebook want you to re-engage customers through Sponsored Messages (basically, these will be paid ads that appear inside the users’ Messenger feed).  The good part about this is that, having built an audience and done all the smart stuff like tagging we advised previously, you can be sure to create super-targeted audiences using your Messenger subscribers. You can then use these as the basis for your Sponsored Messaging campaigns (of course, if you don’t know how to do that, we’re here to help!).

However, effective marketing is always about getting in front of your customers in the right place at the right time. For that reason, its going to be more important than ever to leverage other channels for re-engagement.  We have always advocated multiple channels of engagement during our sales calls as well as in the strategies we develop for our clients. Going forward you’ll need to take this to the next level and think about this as transitioning from a ‘push’ message from within Messenger to a ‘pull’ strategy to get people to open the 24 hour window again.

If you don’t do this already, consider developing the following strategies:

  1. Use Messenger to acquire and convert customers, but make sure you’re capturing emails inside your Messenger funnels.  That way you can send email broadcasts to bring people back to Messenger. After all, it’s the platform that’s proven over and over again to convert better into sales.
  2. Capture mobile numbers wherever possible and incorporate SMS marketing into your mix.  SMS has a much higher open rate than email, but still nothing beats Messenger for action rates and funnel conversion, so make sure your SMS entices users back into a conversation designed in Messenger
  3. Make sure you’re elevating as many customers as possible into an ongoing Loyalty system based around eWallet (for example, Beyond Points Amplifier).  From there you can send broadcasts direct to the users’ mobile phone lock screen, and encourage them to come back to your site directly or once again re-engage on Messenger.  This was always a killer strategy, and its only going to grow in power through 2020.

Facebook will continue to make changes, and you can be sure that with integration to Whatsapp and Instagram Messaging coming later next year we’ll see many more policy and platform announcements. Follow us on Facebook or LinkedIn for no-nonsense updates and the business implications of these changes as they come available.

Six Reasons Why Chat Marketing Continues to Gain Momentum in 2019

Chat marketing can help you to transition a customer from enquiry to purchase in a single (automated) conversation.  In this article we discuss some of the key reasons why the channel continues to gain momentum.

Imagine for a moment the following real-world scenario of an online shopper with an urgent problem to solve.

Brazilian belly dancer Lígia needed to find a dress for an upcoming performance.

But she also had a problem. Not only did the dress need to look the part, but she also needed to have it by the very next day.

She began her search on Facebook and eventually came across a local dressmaker that she liked.

So, she sent a message:

“How fast can you make a custom outfit for me?”

The reply came back instantly and she outlined all of her requirements in a matter of minutes via chat.

It was that chat that secured the sale for the dressmaker. It allowed them to create a concierge-esque experience that offered instant gratification. That’s the key for providing services to customers in today’s market.

They don’t want to go on a journey with you.

They want to get what they need as fast as possible.

Why is Chat Marketing so Effective?

It’s not just the instantaneous nature of the technology that makes chat marketing so effective.

The strategy also allows you to reach customers in the places that they spend the majority of their time. According to Gartner, that’s the reason why 20% of brands will give up on their mobile apps in 2019. Apps require constant support and updates. They also require the customer to open the app before the brand can interact with them. 

Chat marketing gets around those barriers to entry and allows you to speak to consumers on platforms that they use every day.

There’s also the convenience factor to consider. According to Ipsos’ Global Trends 2017 report, 60% of customers will pay more for a convenient experience.

There’s nothing more convenient than having an instant chat to get to the root of an issue.

We’re also seeing a shift away from traditional methods of communication. According to Facebook, 55% of people feel more comfortable messaging a business than emailing it. That number rises to more than 58% when comparing chat messaging to telephone calls.

The message is simple.

Chat marketing isn’t just here to stay. It’s gaining momentum and is on its way to becoming the primary way to communicate with customers. Here are the six reasons why.

Reason #1 – The Continuing Trend Towards Online Shopping

We Are Social’s Digital 2019 report says that consumers spent US$1.78 trillion online in 2018. And according to Facebook, more than half of connected consumers will use the web to make purchases in 2020.

There’s a clear trend towards buying online. Now, combine that with the desire for instant gratification and convenience mentioned earlier. It’s clear that social shopping is on the rise, which makes chat marketing a key strategy.

Reason #2 – Improved Customer Service

Coming back to Lígia’s example, we can see that she had a clear need for fast and effective responses.

Now, think back to the last time you called a business on the phone. The odds are pretty high that you ended up on hold listening to muzak. You might spend what feels like an eternity waiting just to ask a question that takes a minute or two to answer.

According to a Zendesk report, 89% of people rate the speed of response as a key factor in customer service. Providing that speed via chat messaging reduces customer friction. This creates a more satisfactory experience.

Reason #3 – Monitoring Data and Tracking Purchases

Utilising a chatbot in chat messaging allows a business to collect targeted data about their customers.

The bot can gather a range of insights, including:

  • Location
  • Browser
  • Device
  • Product preferences
  • lifestyle choices

These insights tell you where the customer comes from and how they access your services.

More importantly, chatbots interact directly with the consumer. This means you’re collecting customer data from the directly. The data from these interactions may highlight common queries and purchasing trends. You can then use this data to create targeted marketing campaigns, as well as providing immediate suggestions that meet the specific needs of your customer.

Reason #4 – It’s Ideal for Remarketing Campaigns

Over 75% of online shoppers will abandon their shopping carts before making a purchase.

All these people were interested enough in your product to reach checkout, and form an excellent group to target through remarketing. Beyond that, you have the opportunity to make upsells and cross-sells to existing customers.

Facebook allows you to create custom audiences using both standard & custom attributes. You can use these attributes to segment your audience. This opens the door for targeted remarketing via chat.  

Even more powerfully, you can reach out to people who came through you chat funnels inside Messenger to remind them that their cart is still waiting for them.  While email cart abandonment campaigns convert at around 15-20%, our experience shows Messenger cart reminders convert at 35-50%.  

Reason #5 – It’s Great for Lead Nurturing

We saw this in action with Lígia.

In her case, the instant responses she received via chat quickly pushed her through the dressmaker’s sales funnel. She went from becoming aware of the seller to making a purchase in a matter of minutes.

Compare that to the traditional sales funnel, which can take days, or even weeks, to achieve the same result.

Chat marketing allows you to nurture leads from the moment they show an interest in your service. And in some cases, you can turn those leads into customers in the space of a single conversation.

The true power of Chat sales funnels is they allow the consumer to control the chat. Traditional sales funnels force the customer to follow a linear progression, and compensate for that with retargeting ads.  Chat funnels allow the consumer to choose the fast route to checkout or more exploratory conversations, depending on how ready they are to make a purchase.  

Reason #6 – Growing Use of AI

Chatbots use artificial intelligence to learn about customers. And in many cases, this can lead to chatbots making offers based on the data that they gather.

Take Amazon as a huge example. The company says that 35% of its total revenue comes from cross-sells and upsells. It makes these sales thanks to in-built AI that makes recommendations to customers as they shop.

Chatbots offer similar capabilities on a smaller scale, though a conversation. 

Gartner predicts that we won’t need humans for 85% of customer interactions by the end of 2020. Chat marketing allows you to leverage AI, thus saving money on human resources.

The Momentum of Chat Marketing

Combined, these six reasons show us why chat marketing continues to gain momentum. There are increases in the use of AI in business to consider. Plus, more people than ever use the web to shop.

But most importantly, people want instant gratification from their online experiences. That’s what chat marketing provides – instant answers to customer questions that can result in sales.

It’s time for you to leverage chat marketing for your ecommerce business.

That’s where Beyond Points comes in. Schedule your strategy session with us today to find out more.