We love the Shop Spring site so when we discovered their Facebook Messenger chatbot in Forbes, we paid a visit. The team at 1080bots is studying retail chatbots to improve our delivery of productive ecommerce conversational experiences. We know that the chatbot maybe your customers’ first encounter with your brand and products, so it needs to be good.
The opening was very simple and straightforward. The bot asked me if I was interested in men’s or women’s items. I decided to type something I’ve been looking for immediately, so I said “Chelsea Boots”. The bot said nothing back, so I pressed the Men’s Item button.
Great stuff, and we were off, the bot then prompted me for the type of men’s item: Clothing, Shoes or Accessories. Still on the hunt for my Chelsea Boots, I pressed “Shoes” and it asked me for the type of shoes. Good stuff, so I selected boots.
It then asked me what my price range was, reminding me that I was looking for Men’s Boots. I picked a price range and it duly came back with 5 matching items. So far a very clean and simple experience where I was driven down the product hierarchy and attributes to the product I was looking for. And the option allowed me to see more or get to the site to purchase.
Except one of the items I was presented was indeed a pair of Chelsea boots. Imagine walking into a physical store, being greeted by a store staff member and asking for something specific. Then being ignored until I follow a strict process after which I was presented with what I’d asked for in the first place. That’s not the most empathetic experience that could be delivered.
That was a fairly tight chatbot experience that was driven well out of the buttons, but was let down by the poor reaction to the free form text. If you’re thinking of creating a new one that might help customers navigate your excellent apparel selection then drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
I did try a few days ago to see if it might want to talk again. But there was no response, so the Shop Spring Chatbot may have taken a break for Thanksgiving.