Many definitions of conversational commerce are used, that don’t differ substantially from each other. For our expert group the core is interaction between consumers and companies, that:
- occur via messaging, chat apps and/or speech technology;
- is (near) real time;
- takes place with a natural person, virtual assistant (chat bots) or is a combination of both;
- focuses on the customer journey of a commercial transaction (orientation, advice, sale, delivery, service, return).
The playing field in which this interaction take place is however much larger and more complex. Am I talking to a retailer or with a platform? Should I use a voice application or will I get a pop-up on a website? Am I talking to a computer or an employee?
Conversational commerce soon crosses the borders of a company. Figure 1 shows an overview of this playing field.
Figure 1 Playing field of conversational commerce preprocess
The key considerations for this are:
- Conversational commerce is part of an omnichannel customer journey and hardly ever a standalone product;
- Conversational commerce will usually be realized through cooperation between several partners;
- Conversational commerce requires integration of systems to gain access to information in all channels.