Online entrepreneurs are more than aware of the challenges that are encountered when it comes to making a positive customer experience. Unlike brick and mortar stores, where in-person assistance is available as needed, the customer experience is much more challenging to tackle in the digital space.
However, it’s not impossible.
It simply means taking a fresh approach to your customer interactions, and your pre- and post-sales engagement. In an e-commerce landscape where new competitors emerge on a daily basis, those online brands that want to stand out need to prioritize their customers for maximum impact. Here are some of the best tips for making your e-commerce customer service so good that website visitors come back for more again and again.
Use Your FAQs
If your website doesn’t yet have a frequently asked questions page then you’ve got work to do. FAQ pages can be a vital source of information for consumers, but they are more than that. They can also be a huge time-saver for you since you will not have to repeat your answers to the same questions on a daily basis. You should also consider including FAQs on product pages. This can be beneficial for an additional reason: SEO. Longer product pages will mean more space for your keyword enriched content, and by internally linking from product pages to your dedicated FAQ page, you also improve the navigation of your site as well.
Of course, even the most thorough FAQ page isn’t going to provide consumers with all of the answers that they need, which is why you should look at adopting a live chat function. Those e-commerce brands not yet using live chat are missing out on a prime opportunity to engage in real-time and provide essential value to their customers. From sales queries to upselling, to vital post-sale service, live chat is now an essential component of e-commerce. The adoption of automated chatbots should also be considered for those out-of-hours queries.
Making Returns Easier
A good returns policy will mean minimum hassles for your customers. While a product return might feel frustrating, it can also be used to make improvements to your conversion rates. Even if you decide not to go that route, the facts are clear. Make your returns process as smooth and pain-free as possible. Your returns policy needs to be written in plain English, jargon-free, and easy to understand. Although brick and mortar stores have that benefit of being able to make returns a beneficial face-to-face encounter, it’s not impossible to match that experience in your online store.
Using the Right Software
Most e-commerce entrepreneurs are well aware of how quickly new trends and technologies can disrupt entire industries. The right software used in the right way can be incredibly valuable in e-commerce, and there is a wide range of high-value customer relationship management (CRM) software options for every type of online store, no matter which sector it trades in. Look at your CRM software options and choose the software that matches your ongoing needs. Remember to adopt the software that will scale and grow with your brand.
Track and Measure
The best way to improve something is to make sure that you are measuring it. When it comes to improving your customer service, you have a number of options to make this easier and more effective. Emails triggered after a sale or an online interaction can be a valuable method for gauging how well you performed in your customer service, but additional analytics can also provide valuable insights as well.
Make sure that you know how to use your website analytics (this will depend on the platform that you use), as well as Google Analytics. Track, measure, and learn lessons about what you are doing right (and wrong) with your consumer interactions and you will be able to adapt where needed.
Social media is both a curse and a blessing to the e-commerce brand, but it can be a very useful channel for ongoing customer service. From following you’re Twitter mentions to responding to customer queries on your Facebook page, it is now easy for consumers to directly communicate with you even if they are not browsing through your dedicated website.
Your customers will expect communications to be answered quickly, and they will often head to social media to comment or discuss their experience with your brand. Make sure that you have a presence on the social platforms that your customer demographics spend the most time on, and engage with every comment and review.
Your customer service could be all that differentiates you from our competitors. Invest in making improvements to the experience that consumers have when buying from or interacting with your online store, and your potential to grow will be dramatically improved.