Retailers Can Now Adapt New Technology Too
- Full featured communications tool – chat, voice and interactive, real-time video calls
- Get face-to-face with your shoppers live through your computer and smartphone
- Only video chat service that lets you use your mobile phone’s cameras to showcase your products, RIGHT NOW
We are all familiar with video calls over the Internet using tools like Skype, Facetime, or Hangouts. Those tools are great for video calls with your friends and associates, but they can’t help you talk live to the customers in your store, from their home, who are looking merchandise on your web site right now.
That’s where tools like VideoEngager come in.
With VideoEngager installed on your web site, a customer who is browsing merchandise on your site can instantly launch a live video call with your in-store sales staff! The sales staff receives the video call on their Smartphone's or on tablets if you prefer.
The staff can answer all of the customer’s questions, build a face-to-face relationship, use their Smartphone camera to show the customer actual merchandise in the store, and also screen share with the customer to show them other options and even a store/showroom tour. The consumer can do all this right from their browser session without having to register, log-in, or install an app.
With VideoEngager installed on your web site, a customer who is browsing merchandise on
your site can instantly launch a live video call with your in-store sales staff! The sales staff
receives the video call on their Smartphone's or on tablets if you prefer. The staff can answer all
of the customer’s questions, build a face-to-face relationship, use their Smartphone camera to
show the customer actual merchandise in the store, and also screen share with the customer to
show them other options and even a store/showroom tour. The consumer can do all this right
from their browser session without having to register, log-in, or install an app.
What I really like about VideoEngager's Video Chat is that it also helps you monopolize the
consumer’s time and attention. A consumer browsing your site is usually planning to visit your
site and three competitors. When you engage that consumer in an immediate video visit, he or
she ends up spending all their time talking to your staff and looking at your furniture, which
uses up the time they had allocated for browsing
And for all of you manufacturer brands, think "market" and how your sales reps can do a
showroom walk through with customers that couldn't make it to market?
Here's what their customer www.hootjudkins.com says about VideoEngager
"We spend a lot of marketing money to get visitors onto our web site. But it's hard to
move them from visiting our web site to visiting the store and buying. Too often they
visit our site and move on to 3 or 4 of our competitors. VideoEngager lets us bring our
web site visitors into the store instantly. They spend all their research time talking
to us about our furniture instead of moving on to the competition. That leads to a
shorter sales cycle and much better conversion rates for us."
Technology is NOT a Fad...Adapt to it our quickly become irrelevant !!!
Give It A Test Drive
Why you want to do this?
Watson looked right into her eyes and made the sale.
Now to fill in the blanks: The call was actually via a new online video chat feature that connected Watson with his customer face-to-face. She lived nearly two hours away from the San Francisco Bay-area store, but through the power of video chat and his smartphone, Watson was able to see her, walk her through the store and show her the features of the very bookcase she had been evaluating online. He talked to her about the quality score, and compared it to other styles she was considering.
“Then she proceeded to buy one (online),” he said, a $450 ticket, plus a hefty delivery charge. “But she was as happy as a clam because she didn’t have to drive down and make the choice herself.”
Watson and Hoot Judkins have been testing the video chat technology from San Francisco-based VideoEngager, a roughly two-year-old company that’s already made inroads into other industries, including auto dealerships and jewelry stores, but is brand new to furniture.
VideoEngager “allows consumers browsing a merchant’s website to instantly launch a live video call to sale representative on the floor,” said Mike Robison, chief commercial officer for the company.
The salesperson, in turn, can start building that face-to-face relationship and use the camera on a smartphone or tablet to show merchandise.
“That consumer is at home in her slippers. (She) was not planning to visit your store today,” Robinson said. “She was going to cruise your website and five competitors.
“But when she got to your website, you reached out through the Internet and pulled her into your store for a video visit. It’s exactly like somebody just walked into the store, except you’re doing it over video call with someone browsing your site.”
And just like with other Web chat technology, VideoEngager enables the retailer to indicate whether or not the store is open for chat. When it’s not, it can gather customer information, if the visitor is willing, as well as schedule a chat for another time.
After the call, VideoEngager can push information into customer relations management systems if the retailer is using one. Otherwise, it can send an email to the sales manager or salespeople with key information about what the customer was looking at, for how long and who took the call.
The company first introduced the tool to the furniture industry with a visit to the Las Vegas Market in January and found customers immediately “because everybody gets it,” Robinson said.
“If my sales reps can spend less time sitting around waiting for somebody to come in and more time face to face with the consumer, hallelujah,” he said.
“And if I can claw some market share back from pure online retailers because people are on my websites and I give them something better, that’s great too.”
The cost to a retailer for an initial package is $100 per month. That includes unlimited video calls and what Robinson called “one seat,” or one sales representative set up to take the calls. Additional reps can be added for $50 a head, and the company will offer discounts for stores looking to set up more than just a handful of salespeople, Robinson said.
During next month’s High Point Market, VideoEngager plans to be showing in Ashley’s showroom (IHFC H-900) and at Space #13 in the Home Furnishings Assn.’s Retailer Resource Center with Imagine Retailer.
At Hoot Judkins, known for its offering of “real wood” and eco-friendly furnishings, Watson thought the new video chat would lead to a lot of calls from young consumers, and he was a little concerned, “because young people don’t always spend a lot on furniture,” he said.
Instead, most of the calls have been from consumers in their 30s to 50s, he said. The store is averaging about 3-4 video calls a day without advertising beyond the website banner button.
“It’s not a whole lot different than a telephone call. However, it’s our ability to show them something from the website (in the store) that’s so much better,” Watson said, adding that even consumers on the calls are commenting about how cool the technology is.
Owned by Watson and his sister Victoria Marchant, Hoot Judkins is e-commerce enabled, but Watson said his focus has always been on driving traffic to the store, and “without a doubt,” the video chat is driving sales and traffic, he said.
“A couple of customers did call and then proceed to buy online, but more people come into the stores after having had a call,” he said.
Robinson said four retailers have deployed VideoEngager since January and about eight more are in the pipeline and will launch soon.
Hoot Judkins has been using VideoEngager on a free trial basis, but Watson said it wouldn’t be a high cost investment for the store, anyway, noting “it’s all cloud-based, and I didn’t have to go out and buy a lot of equipment.”
“It’s beneficial to any retailer,” he said. “The ability to add a new form of engagement that is much more personal than a telephone call is really what it boils down to.”
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SEE VIDEO ENGAGER AT THE HIGH POINT MARKET
222 S. Main St
High Point, NC 27260
In The Ashley Furniture Showroom
In less than 5 minutes, I'll show you how it can work for your brand or retail store, sales representatives and more, or call/email me and I'll stop by and show you how it works for your brand in your showroom at market.