Voice AI for E-Commerce: Reimagining the Customer Experience

The Ecommerce sector is the fastest-growing sector in India and is expected to grow to US$ 200 billion by 2026 from US$ 38.5 billion in 2017 (IBEF). Most of the growth can be attributed to the rise of online shoppers due to increased smartphone and internet usage. In fact, according to a report, the number of active internet connections in September 2020 was 776.45 million. 

The pandemic and social distancing have further accelerated the usage of online shopping apps like Amazon, Flipkart and BigBasket. The beauty and wellness category, for example, saw volume growth of more than 130% during the pandemic, according to a report by Unicommerce

But the increasing growth has posed multiple challenges for the Indian ecommerce companies, including stiff competition and the demand for a frictionless and superior online shopping and customer experience.

CX in Ecommerce 

In Ecommerce, CX is a combination of all the experiences across the customer journey, right from when the customer installs the application/visits the website to product returns/refund.

Today, every company is obsessing over creating delightful customer experiences and it’s for all the right reasons. Take the example of the ecommerce giant, Amazon, which has been successful in providing customers with the best experience for multiple years now. It is also a leading company in the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) in the category of Internet Retail.

With increasing demand and customer needs, technology has a critical role to play in helping companies achieve customer experience goals. Let’s take a look at voice technology and how it’s transforming CX for the ecommerce industry. 

Rise in voice technology 

Today, voice technology has become an integral part of our lives. We use it right from playing our favourite music track, switching on lights to ordering a product online. Companies have also been very quick in leveraging it to provide a personalized customer experience across the customer funnel. 

Ecommerce companies, for example, are using AI-powered voice assistants for everything including triggering personalized product recommendations, creating a shopping list, tracking order status and raising a complaint. It’s as easy as saying “Hey Alexa, add tissue papers to my cart”.

According to a Capgemini Report, “By 2022, for each activity across the ecommerce consumer journey, the consumer uptake of voice is expected to increase by 15 percentage points or more compared to today’s levels.”

Here’s what consumers are performing using voice assistants –

  • 51% of users research products
  • 30% of users track a package
  • 18% of users contact support



Let’s look in-depth at how voice is impacting a typical customer journey and assisting companies in providing personalized customer engagement and faster service.

Increase in Voice Commerce 

Imagine having a dedicated salesperson guiding you through a product purchase at the comfort of your home. Sounds too good to be true?

Today, with voice commerce you can do exactly that. You can speak with a voice assistant to buy a product without browsing through the web or opening a shopping application on your phone. Just as you check the weather on your phone using voice commands, you can ask questions, check ratings, product details and more.

While there are multiple advantages, the biggest one for voice commerce is convenience. This helps consumers save time and maximize ease. Juniper Research forecasts that voice commerce will be over USD 80 billion by 2023. 

Voice AI for customer engagement and support 

The customer journey for any ecommerce customer is very complex and involves multiple touchpoints, more than any industry. For example, on mobile, only 15% of the customers who’ve added products to their cart end up making a purchase. Cart abandonment is not something new to the ecommerce industry and they’ve been employing different strategies to tackle it including triggering emails and push notifications. 

To further reduce cart abandonment and tackle other similar challenges, companies are increasingly adopting Voice AI solutions. For example, whenever a user abandons a cart, an outbound call can be automatically triggered to a customer after a certain period to understand the reason for cart abandonment. Depending on their response, ecommerce companies can take appropriate action. For example, if the customer was facing a payment issue, the company can suggest alternative payment methods and so on. This can drastically help in reducing the number of cart abandonment.

Similarly, Voice AI can help with customer reactivation, promote offers/new launches and update customers on product availability and price drops. When it comes to customer support, Voice AI can allow customers to raise complaints instantly, answer frequent queries and collect important feedback interactively. 

Future of voice in Ecommerce & opportunities 

The rise in the usage of voice-enabled devices in the recent past has clearly shown how comfortable consumers are becoming when it comes to engaging with conversational assistants. According to a report jointly released by Kantar Millward Brown and IBM, “There are already 33 million voice-enabled devices installed globally.”



Apart from few challenges, voice technology is a game-changer for ecommerce companies. Be it voice commerce, customer engagement or support, voice has a huge role to play across the customer journey. When used at the right time and situation, it can create unforgettable experiences for customers.  

This is a huge opportunity for ecommerce companies to reimagine their strategies and customer journey across different stages. By doing this, companies can not only enhance CX but also stand out in the competition. 

Brands providing a good experience with their conversational bots are driving higher levels of customer engagement (Capgemini Report). 

About Skit

Skit is an Augmented Voice Intelligence Platform, helping businesses modernize their contact centers and customer experience by automating and improving voice communications at scale. By enabling preemptive, intelligent problem solving and seamless live interactions, we have automated over 15 million calls for global enterprises across industries. We help our customers streamline their contact center operations, reduce costs, and also enhance customer experience and engagement.

Connect with us if you’re interested in learning more about the platform and how it can modernize and transform your contact center.

E-Commerce Retention Strategies for 2022: A Mini Guide

The market value of the fast exploding e-commerce industry is expected to grow to USD 16,215 billion by 2027 (Meticulous Research) globally. While the e-commerce companies battle it out for a larger slice of the pie, they also need to maintain a laser-sharp focus on retaining their existing customers. In the new digital economy, they need to constantly innovate with agile business models to promote their products and services in a personalized manner to avoid obsolescence.

Many think that retaining e-commerce customers is straightforward. Unfortunately, providing a great product or a fast shipping experience is not enough for retaining customers. With increasing competition and demand for a seamless customer experience, e-commerce customer retention is becoming increasingly difficult.

But why focus on retention?

Retaining customers not only helps in reducing acquisition costs but also in increasing the customer lifetime value, directly impacting the bottom line. Research shows that a 5% boost in customer retention increases profits by 25% to 95%. While acquiring new customers is also important, building a long-term relationship with an existing customer is 16 times more cost-effective than acquiring one. 

Hence, for consistent growth, it’s critical for e-commerce companies to focus on retention and employ customer-centric strategies that help in bringing back customers to the website/application. Below are a few proven customer-driven tactics that can help e-commerce organizations increase customer retention and improve loyalty –

Personalized customer engagement across different stages

Over 91% of consumers are more likely to shop from brands who recognize, remember, and provide them with relevant offers and recommendations (Forbes). Engagement across the customer funnel is important for both converting users into customers and reactivating existing customers. 

Here are few effective forms of customer engagement –

Effective customer onboarding

While often ignored, an effective onboarding program is the first step you can take towards creating customer loyalty. It helps customers learn about your products/services and the mission of your company. This in turn allows them to choose the right products and gain maximum value from your offerings. 

Promoting Offers/New Launches 

If you want customers to return back and buy from you after their initial purchase, it’s very important to constantly be in touch with them and build a relationship. There are multiple strategies e-commerce companies can use to achieve this, including – 

  • Promoting new product launches and other important announcements through AI voice bots.
  • Triggering promotional outbound calls through AI voice bots for reactivating existing customers. 
  • Notifying customers about price drops and product availability alerts by leveraging AI voice bots. 

Let’s understand this better using an example. Assume a user is looking to purchase a specific product that is currently out of stock. To ensure he/she visits again when the product comes back in stock, e-commerce companies can automatically trigger calls informing the customer about the product availability. Assuming there are hundreds of such customers every day, it’s an ingenious way to bring back potential buyers and increase sales.

Alongside calls, e-commerce companies can also notify users using push notifications, text messages and emails.

Offer excellent & proactive customer support

Customer service directly impacts customer loyalty. Hence, whether companies are active on only one or multiple channels, it’s important to ensure that they provide a delightful and seamless customer experience consistently across all channels. Since over 70% of users prefer to shop using their phone, the most popular channels are call, chat and SMS.

While chat and SMS don’t require a lot of resources to handle, calls are resource-intensive and require hiring and training of call centre agents. However, with limited bandwidth, e-commerce companies struggle in answering customer calls quickly and in providing them first call resolution. The situation worsens during events like festivals, a sale or a big product launch. 

To overcome this challenge, more and more e-commerce companies are adopting Voice AI built using advanced Artificial Intelligence (AI) algorithms that can not only understand the context and intent but also hold natural human-like conversations. By leveraging the technology, e-commerce companies can handle the majority of the outbound calls especially the ones that are mundane without the need for a human agent. AI voice bots can answer questions like a human and resolve common queries (for example, order status enquiry). When required the AI voice bots can also easily transfer calls to agents with context. 

This allows e-commerce companies to handle mundane calls and surges (during festival season or a sale) while freeing up agent bandwidth. Since the resolution is instant, AI voice bots drastically reduce call waiting times and increase first call resolution. 

Collecting feedback and acting on it

While often undervalued, collecting customer feedback is a very effective way of increasing customer retention. This is because it’s impossible to retain a customer without knowing what they expect from a product or service. 

Hence, irrespective of the company size or the number of customers, e-commerce companies should proactively collect customer feedback and analyze it to improve product experience and service.

Most companies are leveraging emails, text messages, agent calls and push notifications to collect feedback. While these methods are effective to an extent, the number of responses received using these methods are very poor. We’ve all been guilty of ignoring emails and text messages sent to us for feedback. To fix this, e-commerce companies can leverage Voice AI.

AI Voice bots that are powered using Voice AI can intelligently trigger calls at certain milestones (eg. when the product is delivered) to collect feedback from customers in a personalized manner. It can even reschedule calls in case the customer doesn’t pick or when they request for a callback. Collecting feedback at the right time not only makes the customer feel valued but also yields a higher conversion rate compared to other channels.

Irrespective of the channel you’re utilizing, remember to ask customers for additional context with the rating. In order to improve CX, it’s important to understand in depth their challenges and reasons for both poor and good experiences. 

Wrapping it up 

While a few retention strategies might take additional resources and effort to implement, they’ll go a long way in increasing customer lifetime value and ultimately revenue. For faster implementation and in-depth analytics, companies need to leverage the latest technologies (like Voice AI, ML) and tools.

Lastly, to get the maximum out of the above strategies, e-commerce companies need to focus their efforts on the right set of users (that create maximum value for them in the long run).  

About Skit

Skit is an Augmented Voice Intelligence Platform, helping businesses modernize their contact centers and customer experience by automating and improving voice communications at scale. By enabling preemptive, intelligent problem solving and seamless live interactions, we have automated over 15 million calls for global enterprises across industries. We help our customers streamline their contact center operations, reduce costs, and also enhance customer experience and engagement.

Connect with us if you’re interested in learning more about the platform and how it can streamline your contact center strategy.