How to incentivize prompt automated payment using chatbots?

In this article you will find:

Delinquency and non-payment, also known as overdue accounts, are very serious issues that jeopardize the financial health of companies. That's why chatbots in e-commerce strategies have become so relevant. Are you interested? In this post, I'll tell you all about it.

Late payments are a constant concern that can lead a company to close its operations. Additionally, their management consumes valuable resources and, as if that weren't enough, can generate tensions in customer relationships.

Luckly, in the midst of this challenge, technology managed to generate an innovative solution that leaves the market hopeful: chatbots

These tools leverage the growing relevance of conversational commerce (c-commerce) and platforms like WhatsApp, to improve efficiency when collecting payments without harming the customer experience.

Let me present you the three characters of this article:

  • Late payments, a real threat that can hinder a company's ability to meet its own financial commitments and whose collection consumes valuable resources.
  • Chatbots, a market's technological response to automate much of the collection process.
  • Contactability: with a reach of over 90% in Latin America and an incredible open rate of 98% and over 80% message read rate within the first 5 minutes.

That's what I'll talk about today, the importance of integrating chatbots into your conversational collection strategy and avoiding the headaches of this worrying problem. In this post, you'll see:

  • Overdue accounts in numbers
  • Chatbots and contactability as the axis of prompt payment and collections
  • A few examples of collection messages and special offers to incentivize prompt payment 
  • How omnichannel strategy and personalization improve the customer experience and efficiency in collections
  • Happy payments with Customer Engagement by Truora

Overdue accounts in numbers

Late payments represent one of the most pressing challenges for companies worldwide. Below, we'll present some revealing statistics and their impact on companies.

According to Alan Ramírez, CEO of Coperva in an artículo from Forbes México:

  • Overdue accounts are the 3rd leading cause of small and midsize enterprises closures. 
  • From May 2019 to July 2021, 1,583,930 units closed, representing a decrease of 396,761 establishments.
  • 57% of Mexican companies face this problem, especially in sectors like automotive credit, banks, and real estate.
  • Revenue loss in overdue accounts can reach up to 33% for individuals and businesses.

According to a study by Atradius, a global credit insurance operator present in 50 countries providing information to protect companies from payment risks:

  • 33% of companies in Brazil, Canada, Mexico and the United States face liquidity problems due to delays in collecting their commercial operations.
  • 95% of these companies experience delays in paying B2B invoices, both from domestic and foreign clients.
  • In Mexico, 54% of companies face delays in payments from domestic clients.
  • Over 45% of domestic invoices are overdue beyond the due date, highlighting additional challenges companies face.

The impact of a preventive strategy

Prevention is more efficient than correction; late payments require a lot of work

  1. Recovery: the process of recovering funds from loans that are in default or considered uncollectible, involving a variety of strategies that range from direct contact with the debtor to legal action, and will require specialized personnel in negotiations, collections and, in some cases, legal procedures.
  2. Written-off Portfolio: also known as a deteriorated or delinquent portfolio, it refers to loans that are in a prolonged state of default and are considered unlikely to be fully recovered.

With a preventive approach, you can generate reminders, alerts or payment options to minimize losses.

Chatbots and contactability as the axis of prompt payment and collections

Now let's get to the interesting part, which is when I tell you that there is a way out of this situation. Much of the issue of delinquency, especially among individuals, is not due to ill will but to a lack of organization.

The digital market advanced so quickly that it created an illusion of solvency that became for many users and companies a debt pyramid, falling into a vicious, impoverishing circle of taking on debt to pay debt.

And this is where the innovative approach comes in, leveraging c-commerce channels to guide your users in their decisions. We could call it a preventive approach.

Optimizing collection with chatbots on WhatsApp

Chatbots integrated with WhatsApp give you the ability to refine your collection processes, providing you with an efficient way to send payment reminders and develop more direct and personalized communication with your customers. 

Automated payment reminders

One of the main functions of chatbots on WhatsApp are the automated reminders of payment.

These reminders can be configured to be sent at strategic moments, such as the eve of a bill's due date. This ensures that customers receive timely and accurate reminders, increasing the likelihood of them paying on time.

Message personalization

Personalization in the digital age goes much further than putting the user's name in a message, it involves a level of data collection and analysis that lets your company know more about their finances than the user himself.

Bots can process customer data, such as payment history and communication preferences, to adapt to their individual needs and provide more relevant guidance, increasing the effectiveness of payment reminders.

Real-time interaction

Another advantage of chatbots on WhatsApp is the ability to interact in real-time with customers.

In addition to sending automated payment reminders, bots can also respond to inquiries and provide real-time assistance, giving your customers quick answers to their payment questions or efficiently solving problems, without having to wait for a human representative to be available.

This sense of timeliness can be the difference between taking on another debt that will directly compete with what they owe to your company or not.

Tracking and analysis of results

Furthermore, chatbots on WhatsApp can also track and analyze the results of communications.

The bots can gather data on the effectiveness of collection messages, such as open rates, providing you with detailed reports so you can evaluate the performance of your collection strategy and make adjustments as necessary to improve effectiveness.

Some examples of collection messages and special offers to incentivize prompt payment 

Effective communication plays a crucial role in incentivizing customers to avoid delays. It's true that you need to be very clear in what you want to communicate, but you can also add value with useful information or offer special deals to motivate them.

Here are a few examples:

  • Payment Incentive Message

Hi [Customer's Name]! We want to remind you that your invoice number [Invoice Number] is pending payment. Don't forget that if you need to negotiate, you can do it in our App, the process is very simple. Make sure to keep your account up to date so you don't miss out on any offers! If you have any questions about your invoice or need help making the payment, we're here to assist you" 🙂

  • Payment Reminder Message with Discount

“Dear [Customer's Name], we want to remind you that your invoice number [Invoice Number] is due on [Due Date]. As a thank you for your punctuality, we offer you a 10% discount on your next purchase. 😎 Seize this opportunity and make sure to keep your account up to date so your money goes further! For more details, feel free to contact us".

  • Thank You Message for Prompt Payment with Discount Coupon

"Hi [Customer's Name]! We want to thank you for your prompt payment of invoice number [Invoice Number]. Your commitment is invaluable to us, so we're sending you a 10% discount coupon for your next purchase. Enjoy it and thank you for choosing us! 🙂 If you have any questions or concerns, don't hesitate to contact us".

How omnichannel strategy and personalization improve the customer experience and efficiency in collections

Finally, I'll talk about omnichannel as a fundamental concept for achieving the best results. The strategic idea is: provide attention to your users on any channel and lead them to WhatsApp where you can have a more persuasive and efficient conversation.

  • Improving collection efficiency

To begin with, by leading them to WhatsApp you'll be able to take advantage of all the resources that WhatsApp Business API continuously develops to increase efficiency. This means you'll have access to data, reports and a level of personalization never seen before.

At the same time, you'll save your team time and your company's resources that you can apply to more strategic points.

  • Generate better solutions for the user

The data you gather combined with the trust and familiarity of WhatsApp results in a different type of connection that allows you to offer tailored alternatives to each user at the most opportune moment.

By collecting, analyzing and processing data with advanced algorithms, your messages will exponentially increase their relevance, becoming a valuable aid in organizing finances.

  • Frictionless payment experience

Lastly, the most important thing is to make the payment a good experience, showing that your company works so that the user can enjoy their financial well-being without uncomfortable or unpleasant moments.

Making payment a happy moment is perhaps the greatest achievement of all time for the business world!

Happy payments with Customer Engagement by Truora

Don't wait any longer and avoid overdue accounts forever, our business is to put the latest technology at your fingertips so that collecting is a certainty.

Discover Customer Engagement, take your free trial, and turn collections into a memorable experience. Truora: happy customers, even at payment time!

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