CEO Sharon Price John says Build-A-Bear’s old e-commerce system is a big reason for disappointing online sales in December.
Shoppers who chat are four times more likely to make a purchase.
As traffic to U.K.-based designer lifestyle brand retailer Ted Baker’s web site grew, the retailer realized the online experience it offered shoppers didn’t match its in-store experience.
The retailer decided to change the situation by working with vendor LivePerson Inc. to add live chat to help its online customers who need guidance exploring the variety of collections sold via the retailer’s U.K. site.
In the three years since it implemented the service, Ted Baker has discovered that those who engage in chat with one of the retailer’s customer service associates are four times more likely to make a purchase than those who do not.
“LivePerson has given us the ability to connect in a more personal, relevant and meaningful way with our visitors and make sure they are getting the most out of their online shopping experience,” says Eve Henrikson, head of e-commerce for Ted Baker. “Live chat provides the rare opportunity to offer shopping advice and recommendations in real-time, which has enabled us to increase sales and also average order values.”
Ted Baker tested over a six-week period several chat invitation templates, each designed to match the brand’s online image. The retailer measured the acceptance rate of each design and compared it to the others.
The winning invitation features a pink hand holding a Ted Baker business card, and asks “Would you like a helping hand?” If the customer clicks a Yes button, one of the retailer’s personal shopping assistants connects with the shopper to chat about what they are looking for. The sales assistant then helps with any questions and makes suggestions about products to guide the customer through the purchase process.
The live chat tool collects data on the site’s visitors and prompts associates to invite for a chat those whose behaviors indicate they might want help. For example, the retailer might send a chat invite to a visitor who has been on the same page for a certain amount of time or if the shopper has stalled during the checkout process.
The LivePerson system also provides the retailer information on current site visitors, including their city, state and country, which it gathers from the user’s IP address; whether they’ve previously chatted or bought from the site; and the interests they display based on the product pages they’ve viewed, forms they’ve completed or items they’ve placed in their shopping carts.
“Live chat has helped us better connect with our site visitors by extending our in-store brand to the online channel, Henrikson says. “In addition, the ability to highlight and communicate seasonal campaigns to web site visitors has helped us achieve good online revenue growth.”
Ted Baker is also using live chat on its site for U.S. consumers. Ted Baker-London.com is No. 393 in the Internet Retailer Top 400 Europe Guide.