TABLE: Selling Solutions, Not Just Products

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Cristian Petschen, Founder & CEO, TABLECristian Petschen, Founder & CEO Jenny is searching for a bed for her new apartment. Completely confused with the options available at a home goods retailer website, she decides to get help by clicking on the chat button and initiates a conversation with an AI chatbot, ZOE. While ZOE suggests one of the bestselling beds of the brand, Jenny is unsure of the size and decides to collaborate with the designer by clicking the option. Immediately, she is redirected to an encrypted private messenger channel, the TABLE. Here, she can collaborate with not only the designer but anyone else, even friends and family, to help her with planning, product design, and other requirements ensuring she can get her dream bedroom in a simple and enjoyable way. Along with 3D images of the bed, Jenny can also receive suggestions on matching light stands, curtains, and lamps for her bedroom. She can go ahead and select all the products she needs and checkout with a simple interface on the TABLE. Genius!

In this instance, Jenny was not only looking at purchasing a bed but wanted to solve her problem of buying a bed that rightly fits her room. Similarly, when a customer is looking for a product or service, what they are really looking for is a solution to a problem they have. Whether shopping for a bedroom set, insurance, software, or an investment opportunity, each client has a problem that needs to be solved. Unfortunately, businesses have mainly focused on selling products rather than solving problems, neglecting the overall customer experience. Cristian Petschen, founder and CEO of TABLE (TABLE.co), the company that offers its namesake messenger product, explains that customers move throughthree basic stages—find, buy, and use the solution. Brands are unable to provide a single seamless journey through those stages. In fact, in a study conducted by Loudhouse, 87 percent of 7,000 shoppers reported that organizations must work harder to provide a more consistent experience across stages. As people, products, and services become more sophisticated, the need for a personalized “solutions provider” approach that efficiently addresses customers’ needs no matter where they are in the journey becomes necessary for a business’s survival. The old-fashioned product catalog format with its forms, list of products and services, shopping cart, and checkout flow will not get them there. The multiple channels that technology has now made available to consumers have not made the journey any simpler either. Today, customers need to tell their story many times while filling out forms, waiting days for call-backs or email replies, juggling between different apps and services, and even turning to their friends, family, and colleagues through social media and messenger apps for help and advice in buying products. Customers have a fragmented experience as a result of their journey through isolated channels. Alongside, they seek services regarding products through the web and mobile apps, chat widgets, SMS, call centers, and brick-and-mortar stores.

What if customers could connect with and have conversations with the right people no matter what channel they are in or where they are in the process. What if customers could collaborate with friends, family, and colleagues in real time, pull in the right experts, and do everything they need in one place, anywhere, and anytime? While businesses have adopted messenger-based collaboration for internal teams, they are unable to adoptthis superior approach when collaborating with their customers, as it requires identification of their immediate needs and routing to the right people. TABLE has turned this seemingly arduous task into a reality. Founded on the premise of a “customer-first” approach, TABLE is one such organization that has introduced a platform thatentails the broader spectrum of buyers’ needs, thereby creating a scope for high standard delivery of quality products and services.

Our focus is to help businesses increase customer acquisition, sales, and retention while delighting customers without disrupting their operations. We do this by unifying the customer experience, from marketing to post sales, across channels and along the entire journey in the most natural way, through personalized and persistent conversations.


“Our focus is to help businesses increase customer acquisition, sales, and retention while delighting customers without disrupting their operations. We do this by unifying the customer experience, from marketing to post sales, across channels and along the entire journey in the most natural way, through personalized and persistent conversations,” says Petschen.

"By helping businesses become a solution provider focusing on the customers’ needs along the entire journey and enabling collaborative idea sharing, businesses can boost shoppers to move from consideration to purchase with a 70 percent customer retention rate."

Having had terrible experiences with retailers, banks, insurance companies, software vendors, and other providers himself, Petschen saw that these brands were not adding significant value and some e-commerce websites were taking complete advantage of the scenario. That is when he thought of finding a better way to use technology to help businesses become solutions providers at scale and in turn delight customers with a unified experience across channels. Soon, TABLE came into existence to serve the customer service industry that is worth $350 billion today.

Tables: The Connecting Dots

TABLE has adopted the messenger-based team collaboration platform concept that is now commonly used internally at the most advanced companies in the world and taken it to a whole new level for businesses. This way brands can provide a unified service experience to their customers no matter where they are in the process. In addition to chat, voice, video, and file sharing, TABLE has added product search, list building, checkout, an AI-powered real-time agent triage service, and even agent scheduling and appointment booking for optimal management of the workforce.

To aid retailers and brands in today’s competitive markets, TABLE stands out in perfection as a white-label solution with consumerism as its top priority. The motive of the company is to promote product quality, optimize marketing, sales, and consumer retention. By combining voice, video, and file sharing features into a single interface, retailers and brands can create “Tables” that are private messenger channels through which they can simplify and assist potential customers in their product searches. From the initiation of conversation with buyers, businesses can adopt a ‘real-time problem-solving’ marketing and sales approach and can even extend support. “TABLE allows businesses to bring sales back to a digital-first experience by providing solutions to their customers when and where they need it,” extols Petschen.

Tables are persistent and can be created, triggered, or accessed anywhere and on any device without having to install any software. Executives at the brick and mortar store or a representative over the phone can create a Table, or private messenger channel while assisting a customer at a store or over the phone. They can create a list of products and drop any media file before adding the customer to the Table. The customer receives an email, SMS, or other messenger notification that they can just click on for immediate access.
TABLE also provides businesses with an in-app chat widget that they can quickly install on their mobile and web apps. The in-app chat has the same functionality as a Table but can be triggered and remains accessible over the web and mobile site as the customer navigates it so they can collaborate with an agent if desired. With TABLE businesses can also create location and crew-specific links that trigger tables from ads, social media, email campaigns, QR codes and any web page allowing for real-time marketing and providing customers further access to their existing Tables. Studies from Forrester have proven that sales from customers who engaged in a chat before making a purchase increase by 10 percent. Customers can click and immediately engage with the right agents or book an appointment for their preferred time and date, bringing sales into the digital channel.

Once a customer is on the Table private messenger channel, they can collaborate with agents in real time or by booking appointments to get help no matter where they are or invite friends and family to build lists together, coordinate, or simply check out. They never have to repeat their story. Even if something goes wrong with the product they purchased long after use, they can access the Table and get help. “Being able to create a list of products which they can share with their contacts—wherein they can add and delete commodities and even upload images and videos—induces a ‘collaborative shopping’ experience,” says Petschen. TABLE’s messenger app is also capable of directing buyers to a well-established network of internal (in-company) or external “agents” who hold relevant product expertise and are readily available to cater to any concerns that buyers may have.

An addition to the platform’s cutting-edge features is its AI-enabled concierge service named ZOE that can address customer queries, offer suggestions, and even route buyers to appropriate agents. According to Grand View research, the AI Chatbot market is projected to grow to $1.25B by 2025. “ZOE can further optimize the experience by asking questions, providing answers, and pulling live agents in and out as needed along the journey,” says Petschen. TABLE is easy to customize, deploy, and run. It comes with a robust and easy to use admin panel that allows admins to easily create crews, invite internal and external agents, create crew-specific links, manage users, view sessions, ratings, and view general and agent specific analytics.

Broadening Reach and Accessibility

With its revolutionary solution, TABLE is providing tremendous benefits to both businesses and their customers. Businesses can optimize their workforce and reduce costs significantly by pulling in the right remote agents automatically or through appointments. This way they can increase the average order value by more than 20 percent and conversion rates many times. Right from marketing and product selection all the way to purchase, delivery and post-sales services, the entire process can be in a frictionless manner where customers are assisted at any given point. “By helping businesses become a solution provider focusing on the customers’ needs along the entire journey and enabling collaborative idea sharing, businesses can boost shoppers to move from consideration to purchase with a 70 percent customer retention rate,” says Petschen.

Looking ahead, TABLE continues to further build upon their technological innovations. To broaden the reach and accessibility of its solution, the company is working on its platform’s integration with legacy systems that are widely used by businesses. In addition, to help its clients achieve a 360-degree view of their customers and deliver seamless customer service, TABLE will sharpen their technology’s edge pertaining to effective analysis of customers’ purchase history and queries in order to improve its personalization.Petschen also points to the evolution of brick and mortar stores that will merge with online experiences to cater to their customer’s needs. “The biggest challenge forbusinesses will be tying it all together into a personalized and seamless experience. That is where we come in,” he concludes.
- Sheel Vuppuluri
    March 05, 2019