Every business has two very important types of customers to pay attention to: Customers who are interested in their products but just haven’t made a purchase yet, and customers who have made a purchase and are likely to make one again or refer someone they know to make a purchase as well. Scout is a tool that can help your business build better relationships with both types of customers, and in this Scout review we’ll discuss in depth how Scout can help you increase your conversions.
Scout is an app created in partnership with A Better Lemonade Stand and it’s a free tool that helps small ecommerce business merchants build relationships with their customers to help increase trust, loyalty and ultimately, conversions.
With Scout, you can treat each customer like an asset instead of just another transaction and use simple relationship building methods to achieve valuable trust and loyalty within them. When using Scout, you can increase your sales, offer personalized shopping, reduce abandoned cart checkouts and provide your customers with more “face time.”
Let’s dive into how Scout can help you achieve all these things for your business.
What Scout Does
Scout focuses on pre-sale and post-sale relationship building. What does that mean? That means Scout recognizes that the sales process is complex, and concentrating on what happens before customers make a purchase and what happens after customers make a purchase is just as important as the purchase itself.
Many times, potential customers are interested in placing an order on a store site but because of important questions or concerns they may have, they don’t make it through the entire checkout process. This results in abandoned carts which, as an ecommerce merchant, can leave you wondering why your potential customer didn’t make it through the purchasing process. Scout helps you connect with your customers in a secure, professional and approachable manner via phone, email or SMS text so you can check in with your customer, offer them your assistance personally, and resolve any issues they may have.
By providing personal, one-to-one assistance you can tailor the shopping experience to each customer and give them the best possible chance at finding the right product they’re looking for at the right time. When you do this through Scout, you exceed their expectations and build an open line of communication that helps instill trust and loyalty within each customer you reach out to. Check out this short video how Scout works as a virtual customer relationship manager:
Scout’s mission is to build bulletproof brand loyalty and trust because developing strong customer relationships turns visitors into loyal customers, which ultimately boosts any business’ bottom line. At the forefront of Scout’s service is your ability to put a voice behind your store’s brand and solve your customer’s problems no matter where they are in the purchasing process. Increasing your conversions is just a happy bi-product of the relationships you build with customers.
In an industry full of big-box brands that simply don’t have the time to reach out to every customer, be the business that puts their customers first and takes the time to develop relationships with them. As a small business, this can give you an extremely valuable competitive advantage,and not only will your customers appreciate your efforts, they can also give you valuable feedback that can help improve your store’s user experience.
Now that we’ve discussed what Scout does, let’s dive into how exactly Scout works.
How Scout Works
Scout is a Facebook Messenger Chatbot that connects to your online store to identify and grow customer relationships by recommending actions for merchants to take when it’s needed, like recovering abandoned carts or reaching out to customers pre or post-sale.
Currently, Scout offers these main functions:
- Scout alerts you to abandoned checkouts when they happen, along with the possible next steps to take. These steps include making a phone call, sending an SMS, Whatsapp or email message with one tap through the app. In case you’re not sure what to say, Scout even pre-populates your conversational scripts for you as a guideline to ensure that you get the best feedback with the most helpful tone.
- Scout informs you who your most recent and best customers are so you can also take steps to reach out and thank them for their business.
- Scout also offers the option to send handwritten thank-you notes to customers to thank them for their purchase. Scout can automate these notes and send them for you on your behalf.
- Scout also offers a Pro version of their service which outsources the customer service call centre for ecommerce merchants who don’t have time to be personally reaching out to their customers and following up with every abandoned cart. This service outsources customer calls and messages to a team of people who can be trained specifically on your store’s products and brand.
Scout’s job is to alert you anytime it makes sense to reach out to your customers, and as long as you have a reason to reach out, customers often appreciate the effort. Here’s an example of a conversation that a merchant initiated using Scout’s Whatsapp integration in order to successfully build a relationship with his customer:
Who Scout is For
Scout’s abandoned cart checkout alerts identify on-the-fence customers that need extra attention to nudge through the checkout process, so if you’re a small business the Scout app can help you recover lost revenue from abandoned carts and provide better, more personalized customer service to potential and past customers. If you’re a small business, repurchases from existing customers can be vital to your long term success, so to encourage customers to come back and make a purchase from your site again, providing top notch customer service like you can with Scout can help you retain those customers and have them referring your business to others.
If you aren’t a small business, however, and can’t simply spend all your time connecting with customers on calls, messages and emails, then outsourcing your customer relationship building to the Scout Pro team can be the best way to get that small-business relationship-building feel without it totally eating up all of your time. Scout Pro connects you to a team of professionals who can be trained to service your customers on your brand and products and they can call, message and email your customers for you on your behalf and give them the same personalized experience you would if you were doing it yourself.
When it comes to your customers, these small touches can be what sets you apart from your competitors, so if you want to create an outstanding customer service experience, retain customer loyalty, maintain customer relationships and build trust over time, then Scout is for your business.
Scout’s Features & Services
Scout offers several features and services to help businesses big and small connect with their customers in the way that makes the most sense for them.
Ongoing Outreach Analysis & Recommendations
First off, when you connect the Scout app with your store, Scout will immediately start looking out for relationship-building opportunities. What this comes down to is finding out where it’s possible to recover abandoned carts, where you can increase repurchases from past customers and where you can encourage referrals from existing customers.
Whenever Scout finds an opportunity for you to reach out to your customers and begin building a relationship, Scout uses actionable Facebook Messenger alerts with clear action buttons so all you have to do is tap on the action you want to take and Scout will guide you through the process whether it’s dialling your customer’s phone number, pre-populating your email address or text message and even giving you a call script to speak off of. Here’s an example of what this looks like in the app:
Scout pays attention to what’s going on in your store so you don’t have to constantly be monitoring it.
Call Scripts, One-Tap Dialling, Personalized Messages, Emails & Handwritten Notes
When Scout recommends the options of actions you can take, choose how you want to reach out to each customer on a case-by-case basis. Your options include calling your customer directly, sending them an SMS or Whatsapp message, or emailing them.
These actions can be taken pre or post-sale, which can have different effects on your customers depending on when in the purchasing process you reach out to them. Proactively calling a customer simply to thank them or check-up on their order can lead to a 32% increase in repurchases and referrals, and an after-sale service such as sending a handwritten note can leave your customers feeling highly valued (which is also a great time to ask for a review!).
Don’t be worried if you’re shy, not blessed with the gift-of-the-gab or have never cold-called before. The team at Scout have taken that into consideration and the app provides merchants will a call script to use when actually phoning customers so the calls can be as helpful as possible, and SMS texts, Whatsapp messages and emails can be pre-populated so you don’t have to type up a message every time, either.
This also makes the process of reaching out to your customers that much more efficient and ensures that you won’t be spending too much of your time drafting up messages anytime you want to reach out to a customer.
Scout keeps track of the ROI on customers Scout has connected with so you can keep tabs on what’s working for your business and how valuable the service is for you.
For example, these two businesses using Scout have seen their results make a massive impact on their sales, repurchase rate, customer loyalty and overall conversions: Big Brain uses WhatsApp to recover 70% of their abandoned cart checkouts and Motorsport Store earns an extra $280,000/year by calling customers.
Weekly Digital Marketing Tips
Last but not least, Scout also offers weekly growth tips to help merchants who are new to digital marketing and ecommerce learn important tactics that can be applied directly to their store. Scout gives you one growth tip each week for 52 weeks which results in a one year marketing plan with the intention of helping you build a great store. Take these bite-sized tips on board and apply them to your store each week so improving your store’s marketing plan never becomes overwhelming.
Scout Pro is the first call center software for Shopify and like we’ve already mentioned, it’s the ideal option for merchants who simply can’t handle reaching out to all their recommended customer relationship-building opportunities each day. Scout Pro connects you with a trained team of real people who can handle your calls for you so you can outsource your business’ entire call centre while still making it a personalized and helpful experience for your customers.
Pros & Cons of Scout
- Attentive: Scout pays attention to what’s going on in your store so you never miss a chance to solve an abandoned cart, thank a customer for their support, increase repurchases or engage referrals.
- Actionable: Scout alerts you when there’s a new opportunity to reach out to a customer so you know when it’s the best time to take action.
- Personalized: Whether you’re a small business that can handle outreach internally, or you’re a big business that needs Scout’s Pro team to handle outreach, either option results in personalized calls and messages to customers.
- Efficient: Pre-populated messages & emails and pre-created scripts for phone calls mean you’re never wasting time figuring out the right thing to say to your customers.
- Meaningful: Scout helps build meaningful relationships between merchants and customers so merchants can provide the best possible service and customers get what they’re looking for.
- Automated: Choose when you want Scout to send personalized handwritten thank-you notes to your customers to make them feel even more valued.
- Measured: Results for your store are tracked so you can gauge Scout’s ROI.
- One-of-a-Kind: Scout Pro is Shopify’s first call centre software.
- Successful: Weekly digital marketing tips are included to ensure your store has the best chance at success when it comes to marketing and outreach.
- Outsourced: If you need, outsource your customer outreach and calls to Scout Pro.
- Shopify Integration Only: Currently, Scout only integrates with Shopify stores.
- Facebook Messenger Only: Scout only connects with merchants through the Facebook Messenger App.
- Message Fatigue: If you run a large store with hundreds of abandoned checkouts each day, the Messenger alerts will get overwhelming (although, if you type “minimum” to Scout in your chat, you can set a minimum checkout value so you only get alerts for large potential orders).
Scout is free and always will be. Scout Pro is a paid application for larger stores with teams of virtual assistants, sales people or customer support teams, and pricing depends on the volume of calls or monthly abandoned checkout figures.
What Current Customers Are Saying About Scout
With competition against big-box retailers and other ecommerce stores, you can’t afford not to build relationships with your customers. Relationships = revenue, and they play an important role in ensuring your customers stay loyal to your brand.
Scout helps you build relationships with the right customers at the right time, so you’re always there when your customers need you, whether it’s to answer a product question, solve a shipping query or just to send a thank-you message for their support. Like we discussed in this Scout review, you won’t have to manage this process manually; the app is connected to your store and constantly looking out for key relationship-building opportunities and it lets you know when they happen so you can take action.
Become one of the businesses that are growing their sales, increasing their conversions, recovering their abandoned shopping carts and building relationships with their customers easily and effectively with Scout.