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Conversational Marketing and Commerce With Generative AI Transforms Business

This article was published on June 12, 2024

Consumers are comfortable completing transactions over text. They’re also more comfortable with AI. Now learn how this power couple — conversational commerce with generative AI — can bring automation, personalization, and efficiencies to your business. Yes, the transformation is real.

Image of shopping cart, with a hand holding a smart phone. The phone displays a chat button that reads, "BUY."

Conversational marketing and commerce: Modern convenience for modern customers

Think of consumers constantly looking at their mobile devices. Now think of them managing so many parts of their lives from that same device. Conversational commerce capitalizes on this captive audience by engaging customers in their favorite channel.

For example, a customer browses an online catalog and texts a business in the middle of the night. Instead of waiting for a response during normal business hours, the customer receives an immediate reply — in channel — to begin the engagement and nurture.

Conversational commerce is a great way to add information, automation, and self-service to conversations: e.g., provide front-end FAQs and complete online transactions. The immediacy enhances the experience for both you and your customers — particularly as you answer quick questions, route to a live agent, or even close a sale.

Frustration fighter

According to the Vonage Global Customer Engagement Report 2024, customers are frustrated by an inability to engage with businesses through chat or messaging. They’re also frustrated when businesses don’t offer personalized offers or sales. Conversational commerce addresses these frustrations at scale.

The rise of generative AI in conversational commerce

The same Vonage report reveals consumers’ growing comfort with AI. So it’s no surprise that BCG indicates that 66% of U.S. consumers have expressed a strong interest in trying generative AI-powered conversational commerce. These insights fit with the constant consumer desire for immediacy … not to mention the preference to contact a business anytime, anywhere.

Businesses obviously benefit by servicing customers 24/7, without the need for additional staff. Generative AI can keep the conversation going. If need be, the conversational commerce engine can route the customer to a live agent — or even an in-store associate. The real-time data is invaluable for personalization, outreach, and more.

Multi-channel friendly

For many businesses, generative AI equates to only web chat widgets. But generative AI features work across conversational channels to expand customer engagement. For instance, multiple social channels support conversational commerce live chat and knowledge base features — including WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook Messenger, Viber, Telegram, and LINE.

Get the data
Global Customer Engagement Report 2024
Our latest report, surveying 7,000+ customers in 17 markets, shares customer frustrations as old as time — with modern solutions full of opportunity. Ready for AI and Great CX?

Conversational commerce with live chat copilot 

Every tech stack needs a great copilot — including conversational commerce. In fact, a live chat copilot does wonders for personalization, customer support, user experience, and more.

So get ready to:

Transform your business 

  • Improved agent productivity: AI-driven features, such as suggested replies and automatic summarization, help agents respond faster and more efficiently without extensive manual effort.
  • Reduced response time: AI-powered replies enable quicker responses, which minimizes wait times for customers and improves the overall customer experience.
  • Enhanced communications: Rephrase functionality ensures precise communications by allowing agents to refine their tone and responses. This helps drive clearer and more effective interactions with customers.
  • Empathetic responses: Sentiment analysis assists agents in understanding customer emotions. Now agents can tailor responses accordingly for more personalized and targeted messaging.
  • Better collaboration: Summarizations automate the process of creating comprehensive conversation summaries for agents for future reference. The summaries are also helpful to share with another agent or team while handing over a query.

Transform your marketing content creation 

  • WhatsApp compliance: WhatsApp is the world’s most popular mobile messaging channel and a popular place for conversational commerce transactions. To take advantage of this reach, businesses must first adhere to template rules and messaging requirements — and WhatsApp will review all messages to ensure compliance.
  • Effortless content production: Easily create diverse, WhatsApp-compliant marketing content with AI-powered content generation. This is an efficient way to conduct A/B testing.
  • Reduced workload: Automating the creation of WhatsApp-based marketing templates reduces the effort of your marketing teams. Just as important, brands can maintain a consistent and engaging presence without extensive manual effort.

Transform customer support 

  • Knowledge base: Businesses can upload documents to create a comprehensive knowledge base. A virtual, generative AI-powered knowledge base agent can also interpret user queries and parse comprehensive knowledge-base documents. The virtual, generative AI agent uses natural language processing to seamlessly provide users with relevant answers and streamline customer support — all to ensure efficient and reliable self-service options.

Improve the user experience 

  • Faster and more relevant answers: Users can leverage AI and knowledge bases for faster and more precise answers. This saves time and reduces frustration.
  • 24/7 availability: Generative AI never takes a day off and provides consistent support.
  • Additional self-service options: Users can find answers independently, which empowers them to resolve simple issues on their own and reduces the reliance on customer service agents.

Reduce costs and boost efficiency 

  • Better human support: AI agents can handle many routine inquiries, which frees human agents for more complex issues.
  • Reduced customer service costs: Deflecting simple inquiries to the knowledge base frees up agents to handle more complex issues — and optimize resource allocation.
  • Reduced training costs: AI agents provide readily available answers, which removes the need for extensive agent training on frequently asked questions.
  • Consistent and accurate information: AI agents ensure all customers receive consistent and reliable information, reducing the risk of human error or inconsistency.
  • Scalability: AI agents can handle a high volume of inquiries simultaneously, making them ideal for businesses with fluctuating customer support needs.
  • Minimal setup: A simplified workflow with AI agents eliminates the complexity of setting up intricate “intents” or “entities.”

How to get started with generative AI and conversational commerce 

It’s always a good idea to review your customer feedback and replicate a typical customer journey with your business. Then you can better identify pain points. Are they blocked by hours? Can they contact you across different channels without having to repeat themselves? Do they receive the same level of service? This can help you determine where and how to focus your generative AI and conversational commerce efforts.

Adding new capabilities often means added complexity. So it’s important to consider a single vendor for seamless integration. And because customers have more than one favorite way to reach businesses, a vendor with conversational commerce tools and APIs to embed messaging, voice, video, and customer insights into every interaction — all to simplify the buying journey — is a good way to build a customized solution.

A single vendor with this suite of solutions can also provide in-person support and developer resources.

Discover Vonage Conversational Commerce, powered by Jumper.ai, with generative AI 

Meeting customers 24/7 doesn’t mean around-the-clock staffing. Nor does it mean a stock of generic replies. Vonage Conversational Commerce with generative AI nurtures customers in their favorite channels — and guides them throughout their journey. This includes integration with your back office, personalized messages, and in-moment engagement.

Discover Vonage Conversational Commerce with generative AI

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Linda Yamanoha Zwickl headshot
By Linda Yamanoha Zwickl Senior Product Marketing Manager, Communications APIs and Conversational Commerce

Linda Yamanoha Zwickl is a Product Marketing Manager at Vonage supporting the Communications APIs and conversational commerce business. She is an experienced product marketer and strategist passionate about bringing innovative business solutions to the market. Linda earned her Bachelor's degree in Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley, and her Master's degree in Business Management from the London Business School. When she's not working on product marketing strategy, Linda is interested in cooking international cuisines and learning about wine.

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