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How We Supercharged Our Intercom Reply Rates

Intercom

Plobal Apps is a platform that enables Shopify store owners to build and launch native mobile apps for their online stores instantly. In this post we will be discussing how we increased our conversion rates using Intercom.

Our Sales Funnel

When we launched our platform, the focus was on making visitors fill enquiry forms on the website and schedule product demos, to generate leads for our sales team. Hence, a lot of our sales depended on our website / landing pages’ conversion rates. Initially, our conversion rates were in the range of 1% to 3%, however, after several iterations of optimization, our best performing pages were converting at 15%. While thinking of if there is any better way for us to capture more than 18% of our traffic we stumbled upon Intercom. We had considered live chat tools before but didn’t see much value in them. What we really loved about Intercom was not just the simple and clean UI,  but the functionality to add rich content in our messages. Also the in depth data that it provided us about our users recent activity on our website, their locations etc was simply phenomenal!

We decided to experiment with Intercom and see if it could help us generate more leads. When we started using intercom, we saw a drastic change in our sales process. We had assumed that Intercom would make it easier for us to have an initial level discussion and then set up product demos. Instead, our visitors (Shopify store owners) started talking to us directly on our website and we could complete our product demos on Intercom itself.

We realized that talking to our visitors / users directly, as soon as they visit our website or use our product for the first time, had much better conversion rates and shorter sales cycles as compared to enquiries generated via form fills. But, the number of people who were replying to our visitor messages or user messages was extremely low. We were getting 2 to 3% reply rates from our Visitor auto messages and 8 to 10% from reply rates from our User auto messages.

We decided to optimize this.

Our Analysis of the Problem with Auto Messages:

We started analyzing various sites and how they were using Intercom.

On analysing several hundred websites, we found that everyone had similar auto messages set up. Everyone including us was asking their visitors questions like

  1. Hey there, do you need  help?
  2. Hi, how can I help you today
  3. Hi,please let us know if you have any queries


plobalapps-intercom-chat-baremetrics-g2crowd-clickfunnel

We realized that there was no context to any of these messages; especially for store owners who were visiting our website for the first time. We realized this is not how we would interact with them if we met them in person for the first time. We decided to run with this line of thought.

If we met one of our the store owners for the first time, at an event or a conference, we weren’t going to go up to them and directly ask if they needed any help. We would start a conversation, try and understand more about their business and then explain to them how our product would add value and be beneficial to their business.  So we changed our welcome messages and made them more conversational. This is our new Visitor auto message.

 

plobalapps-home

New Visitor Auto Message:

Hey,

How are you doing today?

So what products do you sell on your website?

For these new messages we started getting reply rates of 7 to 8%. That was almost a 4x increase on our initial base numbers. But the interesting part wasn’t just the volume of replies that we were getting, but the quality of replies.

We saw our sales teams were able to have extremely high quality discussions about our prospects’ businesses, their products, what their objectives were; which in turn were driving up our sales conversion rates.

The second message that we started using was along the same line of thought.

Again, we tried to simulate our behavior when we met someone in person. We would show them a couple of our best apps, let them see the designs, experience the look & feel and features of the apps and then ask them if they were looking for a mobile app.

 

plobalapps-shopify

 

New Visitor Auto Message:

Hi there,

Here are some examples of our client apps.

Bailey’s Blossoms iOS App: https://goo.gl/uV9YS5

Baily’s Blossoms Android App: https://goo.gl/Msw4qa

Sniper Gang Apparel iOS App: https://goo.gl/4LgU8h

Sniper Gang Apparel Android App: https://goo.gl/nM1U1N

Are you looking to build an iOS app or Android?

This message started getting us reply rates of over 12% for Visitor auto messages.

Our Analysis of User Auto Messages:

User auto messages are highly dependent on what activation flow you are following. The message that I am going to be sharing below is our best performing message till date, not just in terms of reply rates but also in terms of product demos scheduled. One of the most important things for us was ensuring that our user knows the full potential of the app customization on the platform.

Over time, we have simplified our onboarding flow, making it easier for our users to create their mobile apps. Now, they just need to enter their Shopify store URL, give access to their store and their mobile app is built in less than a minute. They can now download the preview app and view their store’s app.

Again, pre intercom the problem we were facing was that the conversion rate for demos (Demos Set Up / Mobile Apps Created) was low. A user’s mobile app could be highly customized from the dashboard, but our users would not end up setting this up by themselves. The customization ranged from simple toggle on off for layouts and features, to changes that needed to be done on their Shopify store’s dashboard, depending on their requirement.

We had seen that users that got on a demo had much higher conversion rate. Hence setting up demos was critical for us.

Initial User Message from Intercom

Initially, we were trying to show our users screenshots of how their apps would look once they are completely set up and hence they should get on a demo call to further customize their apps.

We were getting reply rates of 10 to 12% for these messages.

 

plobalapps-intercom-success-story-alimotiwalla-preview-app-msg

Auto Message:

Hi <first name>

You can customize <store name> app’s look and feel

Example App 

[Image]

Click here to schedule a free consultation for your mobile app  

While trying to optimize this message we realized that we were asking people to come on a demo call and set up their apps. We started talking to our customers and realized that a lot of them were hesitant to commit time for a demo call and the entire process just sounded too tedious to them.

We also looked at all our data to see what were the most common questions that people asked on sales or support calls. We realized, the first thing they wanted to do was change the header colors of their app to match their brand colors.

With this data, we decided to test out a new, more proactive auto message. Below is the revised message.

 

dashboard-plobalapps

Auto Message:

Hi <Client Name>

Congratulations on creating your app

Let’s start your free demo. 

Would you like to change header color of your app?

This is our best performing message with a reply rate of 28%

We realized 2 things that drove up our reply rates:

  1. By saying their free demo has already started, we were connecting with our users when they had just created their mobile apps and their buy in and excitement levels were really high

  2. The second and the most important element, was that we were asking them a very specific question with a yes or no answer. It was almost instinctive for our users to answer this question, which greatly helped us start a conversation. Most of our users would reply  Yes and it took us less than 10s to help them change their header colors. This would then continue the conversation, with our users telling us what else they would want to see different in their app. This helped our sales team to get on demo calls immediately and build and launch apps. Even users who said No, would reply saying “How can I add my logo?” or some other query, but we would still be engaging them.

 

Conclusion

Post integration of Intercom we shifted our focus from inquiries to conversations. By optimizing our communication strategy, we were able to increase the reply rates for our visitor auto messages by almost 300% and user auto messages by 200%. After optimizing our Visitor and User Auto messages we saw an increase of 400% in product demos.

Currently we don’t get insights as to what are good reply rates for User auto messages in Intercom, but we are hoping this is something we will be able to see soon in the coming days.

Do let us know your experimentation with Intercom messages and feel free to write to us with feedback or any queries that you may have.

 

What are Intercom Visitor & User Auto Messages

Visitor Auto Messages: Visitor auto messages are messages that are sent to people who visit your website but haven’t signed up for your product.

User Auto Messages: User auto messages are messages that are sent to people who visit your website and register or sign up for your product.

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