Top 6 Zoko alternatives for Shopify D2C brands

Sourabh Upreti
Sourabh Upreti
December 23, 2022

For a D2C marketer like you, we know how important it is for you to have the ability to launch auto-sell & cross-sell campaigns based on purchase history. These campaigns not only help you generate extra revenue but also increase LTV & brand loyalty.

Unfortunately, These functionalities are missing on Zoko along with some other essential features that make a perfect conversational marketing solution for D2C brands.

You must also check out our detailed review of Zoko.

So, what to do now?

Now we’re telling you the top 6 alternatives for Zoko so that you can pick the right one based on your requirements.

  1. BiteSpeed
  2. DelightChat
  3. LimeChat
  4. Interakt
  5. BusinessOnBot
  6. QuickReply

Let’s figure out which one is supposed to say ‘I am the Dragon warrior’ for your Shopify store.

And if you’ve already skipped reading our review of Zoko, we’ll hold you here. We’re going to start with Zoko’s offerings & drawbacks.

A bit about Zoko & its pros & cons for a Shopify D2C brand

Zoko is a shared team inbox for WhatsApp. It allows businesses to set up their WhatsApp account and communicate over WhatsApp for either marketing or customer support. 

It offers features like transactional reminders on WhatsApp notifications, broadcasts, multi-agent login on a single WhatsApp number, and shopping on WhatsApp. 

Pros

  • Support ticket assignment: Support tickets can be assigned inside the team inbox making support operations more efficient.
  • Shopping assistance: Agents can send catalogues to customers and help them choose products for shopping. 
  • WhatsApp chatbot: Keyword-based chatbot helps businesses set up 24*7 support on FAQ-based queries.

Cons

  • Basic functionalities: Team inbox lacks analytics, WhatsApp catalogue and pre-made templates for broadcasts. These features are fundamental to WhatsApp marketing campaigns and the lack of them makes Zoko fall behind as a complete WhatsApp marketing solution. 
  • Available only for WhatsApp: Does not integrate with email for your support inbox. Your support agent will have to switch between tools which lower productivity.
  • Manual shopping assistance: Only live agents can assist customers with shopping on WhatsApp. There's no way to push an automated flow or catalogue in a chat. 
  • Chatbot functionalities are limited: Zoko provides only a basic chatbot that’s triggered based on keywords. It might help with primary use cases like answering where the order is. However, it can’t automate more complex queries or run interactive quizzes to collect zero-party data about your customers that you can use in future WhatsApp marketing campaigns.

Now, we’re going to talk about Zoko’s alternatives. And don’t be so surprised if you come across essential features which are missing on Zoko.

Our Top 5 Zoko alternatives for Shopify D2C Brands

1. BiteSpeed

So, why do we place ourselves as the best alternative to Zoko for Shopify D2C stores?

At the core, Shopify stores generate up to 20% more revenue at positive ROI through owned channels through BiteSpeed. 

Pros

Features offered by BiteSpeed: 

  • WhatsApp chatbot flow builder:  BiteSpeed offers you a complete flow builder that helps you customise your WhatsApp chatbot in real-time and based on your requirements. 
  • Multi-channel support inbox: BiteSpeed allows you to support customers across channels from a single support inbox. It also lets you assist buyers by quickly creating carts and collecting payments with a single click to help you generate more sales and revenue.
  • Auto upsell & cross-sell campaigns: BiteSpeed allows you to set up automatic upsell and cross-selling campaigns. With deep integration with your Shopify store, BiteSpeed makes it effortless for you to build a recommendation engine. 

This way, with just a click of a few buttons, your store now has a recommendation engine that suggests your buyers buy new and relevant products that can boost your LTV and AOV.

  • Photo review collection: You can automate the review collection via WhatsApp. Based on your set-up time interval, customers will receive a message on WhatsApp to share their experience with the product they bought. This campaign also allows you to collect photos and videos of the products from the customers. 
  • Abandoned cart recovery campaigns: Almost all D2C brands regularly witness large numbers of abandoned carts, products and checkouts. Out of all your visitors, less than 10% reach the checkout stage. You can set up automated cart recovery messages on WhatsApp for users who’ve not completed the payment. The rest 90% can be retargeted on WhatsApp. You can also offer some additional discounts to make customers complete the purchase. These campaigns can help you increase revenue.

Preventing abandonment is crucial for any D2C business because no one wants to be left holding the bag (or, in this case, the abandoned cart and checkouts).

  • Segmented WhatsApp broadcast: You can use WhatsApp broadcasts to send personalized marketing messages to specific groups of customers based on their behaviour, preferences, or interests. This allows you to provide a more relevant and personalized experience, build trust and loyalty, and increase conversions. 

Additionally, segmented broadcasts can be more efficient as they allow you to send messages to specific groups rather than your entire audience. You can also use these campaigns to offer targeted discounts and collect product reviews/feedback from specific segments of customers.

Here is an example of how a D2C business might use segmented WhatsApp broadcasts: 

Let's say you own a clothing store and you want to launch a marketing campaign for a new line of summer dresses. You could segment your audience into two groups: those who have purchased dresses from your store in the past and those who have not. 

For the customers who have purchased dresses from your store in the past, you could send a WhatsApp broadcast with a special discount code and a preview of the new summer dresses. 

This message would be personalized and relevant, as it targets customers who have shown an interest in dresses from your store in the past. 

For the customers who have not purchased dresses from your store in the past, you could send a WhatsApp broadcast with information about the new summer dresses and a special offer to encourage them to make their first purchase. 

Overall, using segmented WhatsApp broadcasts allows you to target your messaging to specific groups of customers and improve the customer experience, which can ultimately increase conversions for your business.

  • Convert COD to prepaid & COD confirmation: RTO (return to origin) is a huge problem for D2C brands. COD confirmation and COD to prepaid can help to reduce RTO (return to origin) rates for your store by reducing the risk of fraud and ensuring that orders are fulfilled as intended. 

COD confirmation involves verifying the customer's identity and address before the order is shipped, while COD to prepaid requires the customer to pay upfront before the order is shipped. Both of these processes help to reduce the risk of fraud and improve the overall customer experience by ensuring that orders are fulfilled as intended. 

You can reduce RTO by just asking COD users to complete payment before the delivery date or time. This will not help you generate more revenue but it will reduce the operational cost that occurs for cancelled COD orders. 

  • Opt-In tools: Subscriber growth is essential to marketing across industries. For D2C brands, subscribers are even more critical to driving repeat purchases. You can run campaigns to engage, retarget, upsell, and cross-sell, all of which can help you generate more sales and revenue.

BiteSpeed’s opt-in tools include
1. Persistent Discount Widget
2. Visual Pop-up
3. Spin The Wheel Pop-up
4. Checkout Widget. 

Include discounts and coupon codes along with these opt-in tools to sales count for your store while simultaneously getting them subscribed for future communications. 

With all these features, D2C stores are generating 20% more revenue with BiteSpeed. Talk to our team for a demo.

Cons

  • BiteSpeed is currently available only for Shopify stores. However, it will soon be available for other ecommerce platforms like WooCommerce, and Magento.

2. DelightChat

DelightChat is an omnichannel customer support platform that enables businesses to communicate with customers on channels including WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, Email, and Live Chat. 

It also offers some features for WhatsApp marketing such as broadcasts and automated cart recovery campaigns.

Pros

  • Like us, DelightChat also provides businesses with multi-channel customer support on its platform. This gives the platform a competitive advantage over WhatsApp-only marketing solutions like Zoko and Interakt.
  • Other support features like replying to FB comments, transactional reminders and product updates, creating orders and automated replies are available on DelightChat. These help in a seamless customer experience across platforms.
  • It also offers Shopify integration with a dedicated plugin that helps Shopify stores manage support and set up marketing communication quickly via DelightChat. 

A Shopify plugin is useful for D2C brands to customise the app experience in a no-code way based on their needs. Some other benefits include ease of use, compatibility with the store, reduced development time & support from the developers.

  • DelightChat does offer a mobile app that can help you support customers on the go.

Mobile apps for customer support agents are like having a personal assistant that never sleeps. They allow agents to stay on top of customer requests and resolve issues from anywhere, at any time. Plus, with all the necessary information and tools at their fingertips, agents can work more efficiently and effectively. And let's be real - who wouldn't love the freedom to work from anywhere (as long as there's a good WiFi connection)? A mobile app for customer support agents is a no-brainer.

Cons

  • It lacks an advanced chatbot flow builder: Unlike BiteSpeed, DelightChat doesn’t allow you to build and customise an intelligent WhatsApp chatbot on your own. This can be a huge deal breaker for your business if you receive a ton of queries that can be automated or if you want to collect information about your customers via quizzes that can be used in future marketing campaigns.
  • DelightChat remains behind in marketing capabilities: Though it does offer basic marketing features such as broadcasts and automated replies, advanced features such as re-targeting campaigns, growing a subscriber base, upselling, cross-selling, and the ability to adding segments before sending broadcast campaigns are absent. 

In a world where attention spans are falling faster than a new cryptocurrency, these advanced capabilities are proving to be critical. Especially, if you want to stand out in a crowded market and delight your customers at every touch point.

  • It lacks D2C-specific features: DelightChat lacks a WhatsApp shop and catalogue, converting COD to prepaid, and opt-in tools like spin the wheel, UTM-based tracking, upsell, and cross-sell campaigns.
  • It doesn’t offer pre-approved WhatsApp message templates: This can be a pain especially if you want to start today. You’d be doing a disservice to your customers if you’re telling them about that new offer you’ve got or the new set of collections that you launched.

3. LimeChat

LimeChat is an omnichannel ecommerce communication platform that enables stores to communicate with customers on channels including WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram. This communication includes both support & marketing.

LimeChat is geared towards live chat, chatbots & customer support across channels for Shopify stores. 

Pros

  • LimeChat offers multichannel customer support on its platform. This gives the platform an edge over Zoko.

Multi-channel support is like a one-stop shop for customer service. It allows D2C brands to handle customer queries and requests on a variety of channels, including email, Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp & SMS. This not only makes it easier for customers to get the help they need, but it also allows brands to reach a wider audience and improve their overall customer experience.

  • Along with live chat support, it provides AI-based WhatsApp chatbots that are smarter than keywords-based chatbots processing complex queries.

AI-based chatbots are like the brainiacs of the chatbot world. They can understand and respond to customer inquiries with a level of intelligence and flexibility that rule-based chatbots simply can't match. This not only allows D2C brands to provide a more personalized and effective customer experience, but it also frees up time and resources that can be better spent on other tasks.

  • Conversational marketing features like re-targeting and retention campaigns are available for Shopify. It offers deep Integration with Shopify events.

Retargeting on WhatsApp can be a powerful tool for D2C brands. It allows brands to reconnect with potential customers who have shown interest in their products or services, but may not have made a purchase. By retargeting these users with personalized messages or special offers, D2C brands can drive more sales and increase their customer lifetime value. Plus, with WhatsApp's high open and click-through rates, brands can be sure that their messages are being seen and acted upon.

Cons

  • D2C-specific features including converting Cash On Delivery to prepaid, and user segmentation for marketing campaigns are yet to be available on the platform.
  • Similarly to Zoko, LimeChat does not offer opt-in tools & pre-checkout retargeting. This means you would not only miss out on growing a subscriber base but also the ability to retarget visitors who’ve already taken a few steps in their buying journeys.
  • LimeChat pricing also includes their team's installation time and effort to customize and implement the solution to suit your business goals. That makes LimeChat a bit overpriced compared to its competitors.
  • It also lacks pre-approved WhatsApp message templates to get started. Pre-approved WhatsApp templates save you time and resources when sending bulk messages to customers. Without pre-approved WhatsApp templates, your team will spend a big chunk of their time and resources creating and reviewing messages individually. Additionally, it can be difficult to ensure that messages are consistent and compliant with messaging guidelines. This can lead to a less cohesive messaging strategy and potentially result in a negative impact on the customer experience.

4. Interakt

Interakt works as a WhatsApp-based CRM for businesses and allows e-commerce stores (including Shopify) to access a set of features essential for WhatsApp marketing. 

These features include automated WhatsApp notifications, catalogues on WhatsApp, bulk promotional campaigns and analytics.

The USP of Interakt is WhatsApp CRM + team inbox. It offers a variety of features like automated replies, quick replies, bulk campaigns and notifications. 

It can be utilised for both customer support and marketing purposes.

Pros

  • Automated notifications & auto-replies: You can set up welcome messages, action-based triggers & automated notifications. 

These automated notifications help you quickly send messages to customers as soon as they take a desired action on the store. This way, you can reach out to them with the information they require.

  • Broadcast & marketing campaigns: You can set up marketing campaigns based on events and custom attributes.

WhatsApp broadcasts are like a megaphone for your messages - they allow you to reach a large audience with just a few taps. Whether you're promoting a sale on your store or sharing important updates, WhatsApp broadcasts are an easy and effective way to get the word out. Plus, with their high open and click-through rates, you can be sure that your message will be heard loud and clear.

  • Shared team inbox: Interakt allows you to use WhatsApp as a customer support channel. You can set up a multi-agent login on a single WhatsApp number and access the support team inbox.

Cons

  • Like Zoko, the main disadvantage of Interakt is that it is available only for WhatsApp.  

A WhatsApp-only solution can't help you too much if you're willing to invest in multi-channel marketing. You would end up losing potential sales and customers from other channels. That is why it's important to have a multi-channel platform to manage and resolve customer queries on a single dashboard as well as launch marketing campaigns to increase sales & AOV.

If your customers raise questions on other platforms such as email, Instagram, and Messenger, you will need to set up separate tools for each of these channels. This can hurt your efficiency and increase your costs.

  • Interakt doesn't offer pre-approved WhatsApp templates to get started. Pre-approved WhatsApp templates streamline the messaging process, saving you time and resources. Without them, crafting individual messages becomes a tedious task and maintaining consistent messaging becomes difficult.
  • Retargeting campaigns are absent: Interakt doesn't allow you to re-target shoppers who browse a product but don't add it to the cart on WhatsApp. Similarly, you can’t retarget people who’ve added to the cart but did not checkout. 

The absence of retargeting campaigns is a disadvantage for D2C brands because they miss out on the opportunity to reach potential customers who have previously shown interest in products. Without retargeting, you may struggle to effectively reach and convert these warm leads, which can result in missed sales opportunities and increased CAC. 

  • Interakt has tedious manual work. You constantly juggle with the export/import of CSV files for different operations like contact management etc. 

Extra manual work can be a real drag. It's like trying to run a marathon in flip flops - it's possible, but it's going to be a lot harder and more painful than if you had the proper automated processes enabled. Plus, the more manual work you have to do, the more room there is for error and the less time you'll have for more important tasks. 

  • Hard to build & manage chatbot flows. Building chatbot flow is a complex process with multiple "AND" / "OR" rules. 

These condition/rules-based flows are harder to manage and take more time to complete. It also gets confusing for the conversational designer to build follow-up flows under the primary chatbot flows.

5. BusinessOnBot (aka BoB)

BusinessOnBot is an end-to-end WhatsApp-based communication platform for businesses. It helps businesses run end-to-end marketing on WhatsApp via chatbots, automated sequences, and bulk messages.

Pros

  • Agent Support Dashboard: Business on Bot offers a live chat dashboard that can be used for offering customer support over WhatsApp. Businesses can check each agent’s performance, workload and resolution time.
  • Automated notifications & marketing campaigns On WhatsApp: BoB helps businesses set up automated messages such as transactional messages like payment reminders, abandoned carts and shipping information etc.
  • For WhatsApp campaigns, Business on Bot offers a comprehensive report on WhatsApp broadcasts, and cart recovery campaigns.

Cons

  • Similar to WATI & Interakt, BusinessonBot is a WhatsApp-only solution.

WhatsApp-only solutions limit the scope of targeting. It becomes harder to re-target the same set of customers (based on behaviour, journeys, and order history) across platforms. You’ll also end up buying multiple tools to enable multi-channel support & marketing. That will make your heavy pockets light. 

  • Flow builder is missing: Unlike BiteSpeed, BoB doesn’t allow you to build and customise a WhatsApp chatbot on your own. You’ve to rely on BoB’s team to make any big or small changes to your chatbot. This can be a huge deal breaker for your business if you’d like to tweak and iterate on your campaigns.
  • A free trial is not available: It doesn’t offer a free trial if you want to explore products and features before making a purchase. 
  • D2C-specific features including converting Cash On Delivery to prepaid, and user segmentation for marketing campaigns are not yet available.
  • The Shopify plugin is missing: BoB doesn’t offer a dedicated plugin for Shopify and other e-commerce platforms. That means you can not integrate your store seamlessly into WhatsApp. You have to contact their team which may attract additional charges.
  • BoB’s base plan doesn’t offer all the essential marketing features including interest-based targeting and acquisition/opt-in tools. If you’re keen to launch personalised WhatsApp marketing campaigns that generate high ROI and revenue, you’ve to buy a high-tier plan that includes acquisition tools, dedicated CSM and onboarding. 
  • As a WhatsApp-only solution, competitors like Interakt offers much more affordable plans compared to BusinessOnBot. You shouldn’t care much only if you’re as rich as Batman.
  • Unlike BiteSpeed, BoB doesn’t offer you 1000 free WhatsApp conversations each month. This would add extra cost to you for a thousand conversations each month. So you would end up paying extra for 12000 conversations in a year.

6. QuickReply

QuickReply.io is a Shopify plugin that offers a WhatsApp Business API-based platform for D2C businesses. It allows D2C brands to set up automated WhatsApp broadcast campaigns, follow-ups for customer engagement and retention, abandoned cart recovery, transactions and order status alerts etc.

Pros

  • Agent support dashboard: QuickReply also offers a live chat dashboard that can be used for offering customer support over WhatsApp.
  • Pre-built WhatsApp chatbot workflows: To handle the complete buyer cycle, QuickReply.ai has more than 40 pre-built WhatsApp chatbot workflows that can be further customised to fit your objectives.

    These workflows can save you a lot more time while you set up WhatsApp automation.

    Some of these chatbot flows are
  1. The welcome bot
  2. Product browsing bot
  3. Discount bot
  4. Shipping charges bot
  5. Abandoned cart recovery bot
  6. Order tracking bot
  • Ready-to-use and editable WhatsApp templates: Pre-approved WhatsApp templates save you time and resources when sending bulk messages to customers. You don’t have to worry much about WhatsApp guidelines and approvals if you’re just starting with WhatsApp campaigns.
  • ​​Built-in WhatsApp opt-in tools and widgets: Numerous tools and widgets are provided by QuickReply.ai to collect WhatsApp opt-ins throughout the buyer's journey. Each tool can be further customised, from the live chat widget to acquiring subscribers from the product page or after payment.
  • Segmented WhatsApp broadcast: QuickReply lets you use WhatsApp broadcasts to send personalized marketing messages. QuickReply.ai leverages AI to proactively segment the consumers in a WhatsApp list based on their demographics, psychographics, purchase patterns, preferences and other similar parameters that define an individual. This helps with better personalization of campaigns. 

This allows you to provide a more relevant and personalized experience, build trust and loyalty, and increase conversions.

Cons

  • WhatsApp only: Similar to BusinessOnBot, QuickReply is a WhatsApp-only solution. 

Using a single platform, such as WhatsApp, for customer support and marketing can limit your reach and potentially lead to lost sales and customers. It is more effective to have a multi-channel platform that allows you to manage and resolve customer queries on a single dashboard, as well as launch marketing campaigns, to increase sales and average order value. This can also help improve efficiency and reduce costs as separate tools are not needed for each channel.

  • WhatsApp chatbot flow builder is missing: Though QuickReply offers pre-made chatbot templates, it doesn’t allow you to build and customize a WhatsApp chatbot on your own. Your sales and support flows have to rely on these chatbot flows which would limit your ability to experiment and improve your chatbot.

BiteSpeed: Multi-Channel Support & WhatsApp marketing For Shopify Stores

BiteSpeed offers everything you’d expect from the best Zoko alternative to driving more revenue through WhatsApp as a channel and delighting customers with an omnichannel support inbox. 

Book a no-strings-attached demo to see how BiteSpeed will drive up to 20% more revenue to your Shopify store.

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