How chat is allowing CostumeBox to tap into new customer data

Sydney-based retailer shares how introducing online chat is improving customer service and opening up new sources of data

While traditional retailers are often derided for their standards of customer service, they have held one advantage over their ecommerce competitors – their ability to put a live person in front of a sales prospect.

But the online costume and party supplies company has found a way to negate that advantage through use of online chat software. In doing so, it is accessing a wealth of new data that many of its offline competitors only dream of.

CostumeBox was launched in 2007 in Sydney Northern Beaches by Roma Burke and Nikki Yeaman, selling primarily kids costumes. By 2011, it had grown to a team of six and added adult costumes and party supplies.

According to CostumeBox’ marketing director, Brian Naylor, the company now the largest online business of its type, pushing towards 100 staff and with a growing percentage of international clients, and ambitions to triple its revenue in the next three to five years. During the peak hiring period before Halloween, CostumeBox may find itself filling more than 1000 orders each day.

Naylor says the company has been progressively strengthening various parts of its operation, including its customer service department. It was the company’s desire to handle customer queries faster and more efficiently that led it to implement the LiveChat service from LivePerson.

“Most of the queries are about delivery estimate or they want some sort of clarity on the sizing or the detail of the costume,” Naylor says. “And they probably need it in a hurry and so they want to know when they are going to get it.

“We try to keep that really clear on the website, but you can’t expect everyone to read. And if they can make two clicks and have a live person talking to them they’ll get that answer right away. The chances of completing that sale versus losing it just go right up, and from the customer’s perspective they are getting served faster.”

Naylor says since implementing LivePerson, CostumeBox has seen conversions rise by 25 per cent, with average order values up by 15 per cent compared to before implementation. There has also been a benefit to CostumeBox in terms of reduced labour costs, as staff can handle now multiple queries simultaneously. This was now possible using email or telephone support.

“We can handle triple the amount of inquiries with the same number of labour hours now as we could a year-and-a-half ago,” he says. “Eighty per cent of problems can take 20 per cent of the time if you deal with them more efficiently.”

CostumeBox also looks for commonly-asked questions and alters the content on its site to try to provide this information before customers fire up a chat session, further reducing the load on staff.

According to LivePerson’s vice-president of Japan/Asia Pacific operations, Dustin Dean, the wealth of information captured by LiveChat can be tapped into for a number of uses.

“Once companies start to aggregate enough chats, tapping into it is the next logical step,” Dean says.

Naylor says the next step for CostumeBox is to enable customers to share their screens, so that staff can walk them through the site or ensure they are looking at the same items.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia

Signup to CMO’s new email newsletter to receive your weekly dose of targeted content for the modern marketing chief.

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

Behaviour change, by design

​We’re living in an age of unprecedented change. We experience with Oculus Rift, invest with Acorns, consume video through Hyper, tune into Pandora and navigate with Waze.

Glen Jeffreys

Head of UX, Deepend Group

Chat bots: How to use them commercially right now

I’m sure that many of you out there have heard a lot about chat bots (aka messaging bots) recently, and the fact that they are here to stay is pretty evident by now.

Deniz Nalbantoglu

Managing director, Webling-Interactive

Top tips to uncovering consumer insights for business innovation

An in-depth understanding of consumers sits at the heart of what we all need to do, but we know it’s not always easy to uncover insights that will unlock a true innovation opportunity.

Matt Whale

Managing director, How To Impact

Thanks, Nadia. It was so interesting blog for me because it helps me able to understand well on the basics of business and marketing conc...

MichaelBGreen

3 ways marketers can raise their executive influence

Read more

Having been to the AO on Wednesday for the first time in a number of years I was very impressed with the new branding. The event has evol...

Naomi

Tennis Australia unwraps new brand identity for Australian Open

Read more

This was amazing and so inspiring. Thanks for sharing.

Vijay Kumar

Design thinking: Leading with experience

Read more

Great read, thanks for posting. MR should be seen as the holy grail for marketers and brands, as it offers an unprecedented capability to...

Barney

Interview: The business case for mixed reality in marketing

Read more

what a load of shit, and what a major stuff up... the new brand device is sterile, boring and just plain bad. Would be better suited to a...

James Yoi

Tennis Australia unwraps new brand identity for Australian Open

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in