A chatbot is a powerful tool that can help increase revenue for ecommerce stores, and we want to show you how to take advantage of this synergy. That’s why we set up our own Shopify store selling Chatfuel t-shirts, and used a bot to promote it. Every single step we took to integrate our Shopify store and our Chatfuel bot is detailed in this guide. So whether you’re new to the space or have an established ecommerce business, you can use our real-life example to learn how to boost your own store’s sales with a bot!
Check out our conversational tools for Shopify that drive sales.
Step #1. Choose your product or service and set up your online store.
If you already know what you’re selling and have a system for fulfilling customer orders, skip to Step #2.
To serve as an example for this guide, we created an online store to sell Chatfuel t-shirts. We used a third-party clothing design and fulfillment service called Printful, so we don’t have to keep inventory or ship orders ourselves. Plus, Printful has warehouses in various countries around the world, which makes international shipping simpler and more cost-effective for us.
Our first order of business was to set up our Printful account, and begin working through their checklist of onboarding items.
First, we had to connect our Shopify store to Printful. If you haven’t already set up your store, here’s how. Once the two are linked, Shopify will automatically create a landing page for products you create in Printful.
Next, we created our first product in Printful with just a few clicks. We chose the clothing item and style (a black t-shirt in various sizes), and uploaded our design (the Chatfuel logo). Once that was done, we selected our pricing and markup. The pricing system in Printful is as follows: A customer purchases a shirt through our Shopify store, and pays us the retail price (e.g. $25). Shopify sends the order to Printful for fulfillment, and Printful charges us their price (e.g. $15).
Finally, Printful will ask you to add a payment method so they can charge you for their services. This is a crucial step—your Shopify orders will not be shipped to customers if your account is missing this information!
Step #2. Map out the customer journey.
Now that you know what you’re selling, it’s time to plan out how to sell it. We find it helps to begin by mapping out the customer journey digitally or on paper. We used Draw.io to do this.
You can see the entire journey we designed below, but here’s a quick summary: We began promotion of the shop with a post in our Facebook group, the Chatfuel Community.
We used an m.me link in the post to lead people directly to our bot. Once there, the bot prompts the user to pick a t-shirt size. They are then tagged accordingly with a user attribute, and redirected to our Shopify landing page where their shirt size will be preselected. If they purchase, they can opt in to receive shipping updates later and will be tagged as a customer in Chatfuel. If they abandon their cart, they’ll receive reminder messages and incentives from the bot to encourage a purchase.
Step #3. Create a bot in Chatfuel.
The next step in the process is to actually build your bot! To get training in setting up a bot in Chatfuel, take our free Udemy course. Or, learn more about using a Chatfuel bot to supercharge sales for your Shopify store.
Step #4. Add the Recart app to your Shopify store.
Recart is a Shopify app that lets you easily integrate your store with Chatfuel, so our next step was to set it up for ours. We use Recart to automatically send two main types of messages to users in Messenger:
- Receipt notifications. Users who do follow through and purchase will receive a confirmation message on the web page after they submit their final order. Recart allows us to send that notification via Messenger as well.
- Shipping updates. Recart also lets us send shipping updates via Messenger to our customers who made a purchase. We set it up to send a notification to a user when their order ships from the warehouse.
To set up Recart, simply search for it in the Shopify app store and click “Add app.”
Check out our conversational tools for Shopify that drive sales.
Step #5. Set up Chatfuel's Abandoned Cart plugin.
Chatfuel's Abandoned Cart plugin is so easy to set up, you can do it in just three clicks! Find the plugin in the Grow tab of your Chatfuel dashboard. Then follow these steps:
- Link your Shopify store. Paste in your Shopify store URL and click Connect.
- Create your website pop-up. For your bot to be able to send reminders to users in Messenger, they have to opt in first. In this step, you can customize the text of the website pop-up where they'll do this.
3. Design your reminders. You can send anywhere from two to five abandoned-cart reminders with customized text and timing. We recommend sticking with two, as more may be seen as spammy. You can also choose to have the items in the user's cart populate as text only, or with images. Finally, the display will automatically include a button with a link to their cart. You can add a button with a link to FAQs or Live Chat too, if you like.
That's it! Once you've taken a few minutes to set up the plugin, head to Growth Tools in Chatfuel to monitor how much revenue the plugin has helped you recover.
Step #6. Set up receipt notifications.
Another feature we chose to set up for our store is automatic order-receipt notifications. Once a user submits their order, we wanted a confirmation to appear for them in Messenger. To do this, open Recart, navigate to the “Messenger” tab, and enable the “Messenger Receipt” plugin/widget.
Next, customize the text of the notification that will be sent to users. Recart’s visual drag-and-drop interface makes this easy. You can see the simple message we created below.
Step #7. Set up shipping updates.
The last widget we enabled in Recart is for shipping updates, so our bot automatically messages customers once their order has been marked as “fulfilled” by Printful.
First, it’s a good idea to have the user opt in to updates like these. Though most customers have already opted into receiving messages via the checkbox plugin, it’s nice to have another point where they can confirm. We added this option to the confirmation page users see in their browser after checking out. To do this, navigate to the “Conversation Starters” tab again in Recart, and enable “Order Page Subscription.”
Then, all you have to do is customize the messaging for what you want your shipping update to say. You can do this in Recart’s “Messenger” tab, under “Messenger Fulfillment Notification.”
We kept the text of our shipping notification simple, as you can see below.
Finally, since we offer users plenty of opportunities to opt in to these updates (or any messages from Recart), it’s important to allow them to easily opt out, too. All you have to do is navigate back to the “Messenger” tab in Recart and enable the “Unsubscribe Message” widget. Just like with the other widgets we’ve used so far, you can then customize the text of the unsubscribe message that will appear to users.
Step #8. Match Shopify customers to Chatfuel users with Zapier.
This final task allows us to more easily see how well our e-commerce funnel is converting, and determine which users are most valuable. We used the Zapier-Chatfuel integration to match customers who purchased through Shopify with our chatbot subscribers. We took advantage of this integration in two ways:
- To tell which of our chatbot subscribers actually converted, so we can send a targeted follow-up message asking for their input on our next t-shirt design. It’s a great way to capture the feedback of paying customers and improve our signal-to-noise ratio.
- To use the People tab in Chatfuel to filter out these converted customers, so we can then create Custom and Lookalike Audiences in Facebook. We’ll be able to increase sales and reduce cost per conversion as a result.
First, you’ll need to create a Zapier account and log in. We created a three-step Zap, which you can see in the image below.
For the trigger, or first action, use the Shopify app and select “New Paid Order.” Zapier will ask you to connect your Shopify account to do this. Then, under “Customize Paid Order,” change the Payment Status to “Paid.”
For the second action, locate the Chatfuel app and choose “Find a Subscriber.” Connect the Chatfuel bot that corresponds to your Shopify store. Then, under the “Customize Subscriber” panel, select “search by name” as the search type and import the Shopify customer’s first and last name from the previous action.
For the third action, choose the Chatfuel app again and select “Update Subscriber Attributes in Chatfuel.” Now, any user with the same name in Shopify and in Chatfuel will be tagged as a customer. Of course, matching by name may not be 100% accurate. However, it’s arguably as accurate as matching by email, since a customer could use a different email address when checking out through Shopify than what we have on file in Chatfuel from their Facebook account.
You’ll then be asked to choose the Chatfuel bot you want to use one more time, and you’ll import the Messenger ID from the previous action. Finally, go back to Chatfuel and create a user attribute that designates a converted subscriber. We used “customer = true.”
All that’s left is to test your Zap! When you do, make sure you come up as a user in the People Tab in Chatfuel, so you can confirm you’ve been assigned the customer attribute.
Success! 🎉 Once your Zap is up and running, you’ve officially completed all the steps for integrating Chatfuel and Shopify. Congratulations on making it to the finish line! You’re now ready to start enjoying even more sales for your ecommerce business. Great work!
📣 Questions? Success stories? Share with us! 📣
Stuck on a step? We can help! Have a smashing success story to share with us? Let’s hear it! Join our Facebook support community to ask questions or showcase amazing results with us and other Chatfuel users. Or, reach out to us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Happy bot + shop integrating!🛍🤖