What is Conversational Commerce?
Conversational commerce largely pertains to utilizing chat, messaging, or other natural language interfaces to interact with people, brands, or services and bots that heretofore have had no real place in the bidirectional, asynchronous messaging context. 2016 has so far been a year focused on conversational commerce. Whether it is for internal communication in a corporate firm, conversation with friends, submitting online queries, searching, booking, discussing through online app meaning- all of it and more, forms today’s conversational commerce front. Conversational commerce has seen an immense growth in the past year and is expected to expand with thrice its current rate by next year.
This year has been reined by the following major conversational commerce apps:
WhatsApp, as you might have guessed, is the most popular app in this segment. It has crossed a figure of a billion users and is ubiquitously present on everyone’s mobile phone. It has also grown over its status as a text or voice sharing application and has become the number one way of sharing locations, contacts, videos, and now, even documents. One of the best things about using WhatsApp is that you can reach out to a large group of people through broadcasting and and by creating group chats. It is still exploring new ideas and is exploding in terms of percentage of use.
- Facebook Messenger
Facebook is omnipresent all throughout the globe and is now almost a daily need of people not only of developed countries, but also of those in the rest of the world, so Facebook’s own instant messaging app is obviously in order. One can now use their favourite social networking website to create personal and group chats using the Facebook Messenger. A video conversation with good sound and picture quality is the USP of Facebook messenger.
Slack is used mostly when it comes to the internal communication within a company. It provides an API and an open source platform to set up instant messaging and even create chat rooms for each section for discussion. It also provides a notification section for each sort of activity while chatting in a group. All these features of Slack are being effectively utilized by corporate firms these days.
It has become the most famous photo sharing application between teenagers and millennials. SnapChat recently launched its Snapcash feature which allows users to store their debit card information and with one message, money can instantly be transferred to a friend. Though a great many applications are already providing this feature, the popularity of SnapChat gives it an upper hand over its competitors. It also seems to be a very promising E-commerce platform for the coming future.
The Telegram was a lightweight app launched in 2013. Due to its lightweight, it was comparable to WhatsApp which was, perhaps, one of the most important reasons why it gained fame and made it to the second tier of popularity. Telegram uses MTO protocol for the purpose of security. It remains a simple, fast, and secure instant messaging application.
WeChat was founded three years ago by a Chinese firm. The application was originally built for a special project team, but it spread like forest fire in the market and was received favourably by the masses. In no time at all, WeChat became the most used messaging app in China. Apart from text and voice chatting, it included features of booking, recharge, pay bills, etc., which made it more popular.
But these are not all. The market for conversational commerce continues to grow and thrive in our communication driven era and it is still to be seen what new groundbreaking features will be added to these applications in the coming years.