In this podcast episode, we explore the revival of the human touch in online shopping. Our featured guest on the show is Stefania Bogdan, Co-Founder of App Attic and Co-Owner of trylantern.com.
On the Show Today You'll Learn:
- How to infuse the human touch into online shopping.
- Why online shopping often feels mechanical and transactional.
- The importance of conversational shopping in the digital age.
- Personalization and its impact on customer experiences.
- A solution for creating dynamic and personalized customer interactions.
- Real-world examples of how quizzes improve online shopping.
- A deep dive into customer analytics and its role in optimization.
Links & Resources
Shopify App Store: https://apps.shopify.com/perfect-product-finder
About Our Podcast Guest: Stefania Bogdan
Stefania Bogdan, Co-Focunder at App Attic and Co-Owner at trylantern.com. From studying Astrophysics to entrepreneurship, her passion lies in understanding and optimizing intricate systems. This shines especially bright in the software realm, where balancing customer needs with performance becomes an art. Alongside her husband and best friend, she founded App Attic during the pandemic. Their goal? Deliver top-notch customer support and swift coding through standout Shopify Apps. Among their portfolio, Lantern is designed to reintroduce the personal touch, guiding your customers through tailored flows, and ensuring a shopping experience that feels just right.
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Claus Lauter: Hello and welcome to another episode of the e commerce coffee break podcast. Today, we want to find out how we can bring back the human touch into online shopping. Now online shopping as convenient as it is, always the problem is it feels some mechanical, it's very transactional and a human touch compared to visiting a store.
Talking to a store assistant is sort of gone, but there are ways around that. And to talk about this, I have Stefania Bogdan with me on the show. He's the co founder of AppAddict and co owner of Tridenton. com. From studying astrophysics to entrepreneurship, her passion lies in understanding optimized intricate systems.
She shines especially bright in the software realm where balancing customer needs with performance becomes an art. Who's her husband and best friend. She found an app addict during the pandemic. And now we want to talk about what she's doing nowadays. So let's welcome her to the show. Hi, Stefania. How are you today?
Stefania Bogdan: Hi, cla. Nice to talk to you.
Claus Lauter: Stefan, you're talking about the human touch in online shopping. That's not that easy. And, you and your business partners thought about that. Give me a bit of an idea how you came into this kind of topic.
Stefania Bogdan: Our pain started quite a few years ago when we were trying as, sellers, direct to consumers to try to have that personal touch in our interaction. I feel it's becoming harder and harder and it was pretty hard for us as well. Pretty much everyone is bombarded retargeted. Full of offers ads that you see everywhere, but they're not really personal.
So we shifted from that to actually building services or software that would help us in our, business and e commerce in general. So that's how we got to Lantern as well. Lantern is a quiz building app. Even though we are in a category that's Theoretically about recommending products, about upselling or reselling stuff.
I think it's quite a niche on its own. We're trying to focus on actually interacting with the customer and really nurturing every interaction that you have. Instead of being focused on trying to recuperate someone that left your store already. We're trying to pretty much nurture everyone that gets in your store to try to learn as much as possible about them through quizzes.
two questions such that when you have to interact with them again, it's really personal. You're able to say, Hey, Mary, you know that you're a side sleeper. Maybe you're like a pillow that will help you with your back pain that you told us about, last week. We are trying to make this as as possible in an era where most of the shopping is just online.
Claus Lauter: I like the approach. Obviously, if you're in a physical world, you go into a brick and mortar store. You might go in there with browsing, not really being in a buyer's mode, but also you might go in there with a problem that you want to solve. And you don't know what you don't know. So you don't know how to solve the problem.
And then a shop assistant usually helps you with that. So how does your system facilitate the kind of conversation with a customer?
Stefania Bogdan: Yeah, that's true. That's actually a great example. We have one of our, customers that's, selling perfumes, I imagine it to be almost impossible job to do online to get a perfect perfume to someone online. It's very hard. And they have really good experience using quizzes.
Mostly because usually, you know, a lot about your business. You may end up not knowing a lot about what your customer wants with your business. But your knowledge is also really helpful in trying to get the right product to your customers. So in their quizzes, they end up being really specific asking anything about.
specific smells that they enjoy, specific imagery that calms them, , all kinds of different questions that just narrow down a really specific type of smell or feeling that they want to have with your perfume. And this is where kind of our product shines because you're able not only to narrow down the products question by question, We also have a system in which you can dynamically pull out data.
So let's say the first question, you ask them about, well, what type of smell do you like between these options here, we can actually dynamically pull the data and the next question can be, Oh, you like a vanilla like smell, but what about it, you do like
the most, enjoyable. Since we actually implemented this type of changes, we seen that the ratio between just typical engagements, people that start quizzes and people that get to the end, it becomes closer and closer. Our guess is that it's probably because it seems very personal.
It's almost like you're talking to someone. You said something and in return, you don't just get another quiz question that feels just as barren as the first one. , You actually took into consideration what I said initially, and you have a follow up question for me. So I think they're more likely to just follow through and get to the end of the quiz.
And obviously because of that the matching process in the backhand is way more reliable. So the results that they have in the end really matches their preferences. And. Obviously the goal is sales, but we have a lot of stores that actually don't necessarily have the goal of selling there on the spot, but they're more focused on getting emails, having that last step before results be a page where you want to gather their name, their email, just to make sure that in the follow up email marketing strategies that you have.
You have things that are really, specific. You'll never send an email ever again in which you have just a template. That's the same for everyone. Your templates will always pull data that are gathered from quizzes, from questions that you have in your store. And every email would just look different depending on what your customer's preferences is.
And obviously because of that, the conversion rates are better. The return rate is way lower because is way more likely that they order something that they actually need instead of guessing if that's something that would solve their problem or not.
Claus Lauter: I like the approach that is super personalized there. Also going forward into laser targeted email segmentation. By now everyone should know that email segmentation is the key to high conversion rates. I'm interested in the dynamic personalization.
Is that done manually or is there AI in the background? How does that work?
Stefania Bogdan: Currently, we don't have any AI in the background. How we constructed the software itself is that, of course, you're able to integrate with Clavier, with MailChimp, and how we're transmitting information from the quizzes is that every answer, every question, you can actually put a tag on it in the quiz, in the backend, and that gets.
Send to Klaviyo, for example. So then for each customer profile in Klaviyo, you'll also have all the questions that they answered with all the answers attached. So when you're building emails back, you'll basically just have another tag that makes reference to it. You'll construct your sentences as. Hi, quiz name, your, tag for side sleeper were , front sleeper.
basically your email construction will be formed out of these references and tags that make reference to their answers, the questions that you use along the way, in your quizzes.
Claus Lauter: You gave the example of perfume obviously it was a scent and it's very difficult. I can also think about scent candles. It's very difficult, as you said, sell that over the interwebs. Now your system, does it work best? What products, would work best for it?
Stefania Bogdan: it's really interesting cause I think in, our own research, I would say we're quite focused on doing research about our customers just when we're trying to decide what to implement, what to change in terms of how our app performs, and it's quite interesting to see how big the variety is in terms of our customers from selling Christmas ornaments to even selling pots and pans I never expected type of customers that we have and how good they can perform. I would say it's probably in anything related to beauty from cosmetics, hair products, Or teas or, , supplements. We have a lot of supplement brands that sell it. where you have a lot of variety and people may not necessarily know what they want.
They don't know what they know and don't know. So it's important for you to narrow down what's exactly the product that you need. I think those perform the best and they have a really high engagement. It's almost close to a hundred percent of people that start a quiz. And that end up finishing the quiz.
Also, because we can put information as well, we're not only recommending product at the end. You have an option to use all this data in the results page as well, to create texts for people. So depending on a specific path they took. For example, for skin care brand at the end, you can also know, oh, you have, an oily skin.
So I'll give you a paragraph here about what's best for your skin, how to improve it, depending on your concerns that you mentioned, I'll give you a few pointers. And by the way, this is a routine that may be very helpful. For your skin type. So you're also offering information, I'm guessing why it performs really well for this type of brands is that you're giving a lot to your customers first, your help them first, it's almost like you had an appointment, a booking with someone that.
Ask you a few questions and diagnose your needs, and I'll give you some information and pointers first, and then I'll recommend some products that you can try as well. And I think that you're way more likely to buy when you feel like you got something back. You didn't just take a quiz. This brand actually gave you something, truly helped you, and now you want to try their solution to see if it works.
Claus Lauter: Yeah. I like the approach that, you basically, you get whole consultation with the store finding out and I think it's specifically, you mentioned that for Christmas, going out and buying a gift for someone and then it might really help and give an idea because you know the person, but you don't know actually the product they're looking for.
So that points in the right direction. Tell me a little bit from the technical side. What are the steps that I need to go through to get it up and running?
Stefania Bogdan: We have kind of two avenues for it. We have an AI system integrated to get you started at the beginning, in which you basically answer two questions. Who are your customers and what you're selling. And the AI will generate a quiz with questions and answers that's done for you. Which basically takes about a minute or so to do.
to get started, it's quite easy. You'll have the quiz done in about a minute, and then you can customize it as much as you want. If you want to tweak, add any extra information, anything extra on top. It's basically in terms of how much you want to do put out there. I see from the experience that we have with our customers that
it's most important to just get started and tweak as you go, because we'll have a lot of data analysis. You'll see how many people visit, where they are, if they abandon the quiz. You'll be able to customize it better once it's up and running. Cause you'll see, okay, maybe this question specifically, it's somehow people gave up here.
We don't necessarily know why, but let's just change it. Let's try a few other questions, a few other paths and see if it performs better.
Claus Lauter: Okay. That makes absolutely sense. So I think, the process is very straightforward and obviously you learn as you go. How much on analytics or reports do I get out of your system to find out if I'm on the right path?
Stefania Bogdan: Obviously the sales are quite hard to track very accurately because, unless the sale is done quite quickly after, they visited or they're tagged with completing a specific quiz. I would say a lot of the sales actually come from the marketing they can do afterwards that's really targeted.
But you get a lot of data about who your visitor is, when they went through the quiz, what they answered at each question, if they stopped at a specific point and abandoned, basically about each profile, you get data about when, what they answered. If it's an input answer, exactly what they inputted there.
So if you go back and actually go through all this data, I bet each visitors that you have, you can easily have statistics about where's the bottleneck in your quiz. Should I ask something extra? Maybe they're not, I buying as much as I want from the results page. Maybe they're not claiming the entire routine.
Why is that? It makes it easier because you have each page and what happens on each page in your quiz. It's easy to see where you need to make changes, unless , instead of just guessing. I would say that a lot of brands, try to build their quiz from the beginning. I think some of the brands that are more established already have in their mind from the support they have From the questions that they usually get, they already have some ideas of where did the problems that they want to address are, or the general issues that their customer have.
And they usually start from a specific set of bones but I also think another extra element is really important. It's having a type of logic in the quiz. We have the option for you to create any pattern in the quiz, depending on a specific answer that they gave, you can set them to a really different path compared to someone that chose a different answer.
That's also something that you see in analytics. In analytics, you may actually discover that, I don't know, maybe 20 percent of your customers. When they choose a specific answer to a question, they're more likely to abandon the quiz than someone else. a trigger for you to realize, okay, maybe this path is just way too general for them from that point on.
So let me just branch out here and have something that's... It's way more specific and it makes more sense as a follow up for them than just a general set of questions. it depends on how granular you want to be, but all the data is there. So you can technically be as granular as you want to tweak it to perfection.
Claus Lauter: Who's your typical customer? Is it the marketing director, the store manager? Who you're talking to normally?
Stefania Bogdan: It varies a lot on the niche they're in. Most of them, I would say are marketing people that usually contact us. The ones that are most focused on knowing what their customers want, knowing what they should ask them, having a clear idea of what they want to do, what do you want to market, what do you want to sell?
it's quite interesting that it doesn't really matter what the brand is, we had brands selling, I don't know, bikes or camper vans, or they're quite diverse. But they're not necessarily the people that are most technical, that specific business that contact us. Usually are the ones that want to get in touch with their customers.
It's a good thing to have. We strive to not be a complicated system. And I think our aim in any type of interaction that we have with our customers, Is that they never feel like, I'm just stuck here. I have no idea how to set up the next step. I don't know how to align my questions.
I don't know how to connect something more diverse. Our goal from the beginning was I want you to be able to install the app and build your quiz in a matter of 10 minutes so that you can launch it and actually see results. Because I think where our frustration was when we were in e commerce, you would install a new service and it sounds great.
You hear reviews from other people, you hear founders like we're talking now telling you about the software that they know everything about. And you sound like such a good idea and I'm excited. I want to get started. I want to build this. It seems a perfect fit for my brand. And then I spend one hour, two hours and I'm just frustrated and I don't know how to build the next step.
And I have to contact support and I have to wait for a reply and I don't necessarily know what to do. So I think. This was our biggest pain in e commerce and we wanted to avoid that as much as possible. , we probably spend a lot of time on support because we want to make everything as simple as possible for the customer.
We would much rather have a really simple interaction for you. And if you need something that's really complicated, We'll take over from that. We'll solve the issue. We will make sure that it's as smooth as possible for you.
Claus Lauter: We all have been there, having the shiny object syndrome and going for a system and then spending hours to figure out how it works can be really frustrating. obviously TriVantan is a Shopify app. Tell me a little bit about the pricing structure. How does that look like?
Stefania Bogdan: Yes. Our pricing structure is based on engagements. Our engagements are not a click on the quiz. Our engagement is that you actually have to answer at least a question in the quiz. So if our customer actually interacted with the quiz, got past the initial page, got to a question, then they do something, then that's an engagement.
otherwise, we just felt it's really easy to . Catch up on engagements. Everyone will see something novel on a website. It seems like something can interact with, so I'll just play around, but I don't have an intention to finish this. We wanted to make sure that we pretty much have to price it based on engagement because adds up a lot of costs, but we don't want to.
, be greedy about it. We empathize with the seller part because we were there as well. So we want it to be as fair as possible and what an engagement is. We have a few tiers which are basically up to a hundred engagements and up to 500. And we also have an unlimited plan which is basically as much engagements as you want, as much questions, as much logic, as much.
We felt like it just gets too crowded. If we have so many brackets out there, we just have to have a price. Okay. You get up to 200 and you don't pay us from that point on. You can grow as big as you want. You can be the biggest store on Shopify. Just have that fixed price and just enjoy tweaking your quiz and just actually getting revenue out of it.
Claus Lauter: Yeah. Clarity in pricing makes every marketer and the budget happy. So I like that approach before we come to the end of the coffee break today. Is there anything that you want to share to our listeners that we haven't talked about yet?
Stefania Bogdan: Just from our experience and just being seller in e commerce, obviously I'm a bit biased here to encourage people to try quizzes, but. We do have a free plan. So I do encourage you to try quizzes because they can really transform the type of interaction that your customers have in your store.
It's hard to actually see until you try it, but it's truly powerful. quite interesting that From the approach that we have with our own customers and how human like we want to be, our software kind of translates that for themselves and their own customers in trying to make that as human like as you can possibly make it.
But it's really, truly powerful through something that's automatic, that's set up. And you can use it out of the box to just be able to see to your customer. Hey, John, I know you have back pain. I know you like to sleep on your side. You overheat during the night. So here are some pillows that I think are just a good match for you that in a week or two, you just feel much better.
You'll sleep more. Cause you just told us you sleep only about five hours a night. It's really different from any type of interaction that people are used to online. Going in a store, complaining about a problem that you have, and actually having someone listen and offer you a solution.
Claus Lauter: A good example that you gave there, obviously you have a problem, you go to a website, but there's a lot of questions that you haven't asked yourself because you don't know enough about the topic and a quiz might help there. So the seller was the experience with the expertise can help you getting the right questions in front of you and then really finding the right product.
Where can people find out more about you guys?
Stefania Bogdan: Our website, which is trilantern. com, we have a lot of resources there. We're trying to catch up on our blog. We have a lot of stories that We want to share stories of our customers which we feel are really interesting. And I think for us is really fascinating to hear their experiences.
On LinkedIn, you can try to visit Facebook page as well, but I would say our website, never hesitate to email us. Just to be in touch with what our customers need. So never hesitate to contact us.
Claus Lauter: Excellent. I will put the links in the show notes as always, then you just want to click away. Stefania, thanks so much for giving us an overview of triallantern. com. I think it's a great solution and I hope that a lot of listeners will go over to your website and try it out. Thanks so much for your time today.
Stefania Bogdan: Thank you.
Explore Lantern, the Shopify app that will revolutionize your store’s shopping experience. Utilize AI-generated quizzes, intuitive flow builders, and precise result paths to decode your shopper's needs. Gather emails and use platforms like Klaviyo, to seamlessly curate tailored interactions, deepening the bond with your customers. No coding, just pure strategic enhancement. Visit trylantern.com and message their support with “I want my coffee break time” for an extended 30-day free trial, or visit the Shopify app store.
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