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4 ways to win at virtual selling

With the right technology and virtual service offerings, retailers can provide a rich customer experience that boosts order basket conversions and increases revenue. Today there’s a very high expectation for seamless integrated experiences from one touch point to another. Customers not only want to connect with retailers at their convenience, they also desire real-time communications and replicated personalized in-store moments online. 

Customers are using more digital communication channels and researching products even more before they make a purchase. They’re also embracing omnichannel retail with 73% of customers using multiple channels to shop. At the same time, customers are also desiring a one-to-one customized branded experience with 80% of buyers preferring to buy from brands that personalize the purchasing journey. Retailers are tasked at finding integrated and unique virtual selling methods to connect with customers with interactions similar to what they would receive in-store.

Here are a few tech-enabled solutions retailers can use with a global clientele to create rich shopping experiences, boost customer engagement and increase omnichannel sales.

Inform with live chat

Customers expect real-time virtual communication whenever they want it. Live chat provides instant outreach and is the next best thing to an in-store experience, helping to increase customer engagement, develop new relationships and build incremental sales. It allows store associates to continue providing a conversational experience and target a global customer base. Through an integrated chat solution, customers can reach out to a brand on their favourite social messaging platforms including WhatsApp, WeChat and more. Brands can instantly curate their interactions by accessing the store’s catalog, share product information and photos, check on inventory availability and reply to customer inquiries. 

Brands can also offer live chat functionality through their brand’s website using a web chat widget. This allows customers to instantly connect with store associates to answer any questions they have while browsing the brand’s website.

Showcase products and provide consultation with video

Video calling between a store associate and a customer offers the human touch that is often desired and yet is lacking in online shopping. It emotionally provides them with an experience that is as close to human interaction outside of the store. Through face-to-face engagement, store associates can provide the same personalized and styled in-store experience their customers love with the added convenience of being able to shop from anywhere. Brands can connect with their customers through live streaming to show off product features and details and offer alternative suggestions. 

Video chat also provides brands with opportunities for sales associates to offer their expertise through makeup and skincare consultations, decorating ideas for a living room makeover, dress shopping for an upcoming event, and more. Visual and real-time interactions give customers more added confidence in their purchasing decisions.

Personalize with digital clienteling

There is no reason why clienteling can’t continue outside of the store. Sales associates can extend their clienteling services from the store to customers virtually. With instant messaging, sales associates and customers can connect to receive product information including fit, style advice, availability and overall personalized product recommendations.

Sales associates can also fully support their key clientele virtually throughout the entire buyer’s journey. They can easily build a cart on the customer’s behalf, organize delivery, and process payment through a secure link. Offering customers the option to connect virtually with their sales associate helps build trust, hones the personal connection they would receive in store and increases the number of repeat buyers.

Advise through one-to-one appointments

Brands will also need to look for experiences that will gain customer confidence in returning to the physical store. Give customers the choice to continue their shopping experience in store through personalized style appointments to try on, pick-up, or inquire about an item. With an intuitive online booking system, customers can choose their ideal time and date to visit their local store. Not only does appointments provide added convenience to receive one-to-one in-store service, it makes shoppers feel safe as stores are better able to practice social distancing and maintain cleaning protocols.

Replicating an in-store experience virtually can be challenging for retailers. But by conveniently providing customers with the right communication channels and personalized services, retailers can give customers full control of their shopping experience. 

Offering customers real-time options, such as face-to-face interactions and live chat inquiries, will also help retailers build more personal relationships that will strengthen brand loyalty and increase revenue.

For more information on our Tulip solutions, contact a Tulip representative today.

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