Incredible customer service doesn’t become less important in eCommerce simply because there is no face-to-face contact. To the contrary, it becomes more important than ever because comparing between different retailers is significantly easier. eCommerce sites are convenient and useful, but competition runs deeper and the best way to stand out from the competition is through superior customer service. Long-time businessman Jose Duarte from Costa Rica discusses how to improve customer service procedures in eCommerce to help a business thrive.
Customer service is invaluable. Regardless of whether you understand it or not, it has a significant role in virtually all consumer purchases. When comparing two retailers that offer the same product at about the same price, the customer service solution they offer will make the difference. Explains Duarte, “Which one can deliver faster, which one has a better rating among consumers – these are what will put an eCommerce site above the rest.”
When you’re selling items on the web, you have unmistakable pros and cons. While the pros ordinarily exceed the cons by a wide margin, your powerlessness to interface with consumers face-to-face is generally seen as a negative.
It’s imperative to note, in any case, that eCommerce sites can at present offer outstanding customer service; it just takes some additional work and there are a couple of suggestions that, when integrated, will make a huge difference in the quality and quantity of customers that make purchases.
Ask for feedback from customers. Don’t expect it all to be positive, either. “What some call negative feedback is, in actuality, positive feedback,” asserts Duarte. “No business is perfect and there is always room for improvement. Understanding what consumers think about your brand, your offerings and the business itself is critical to the company’s success.”
Offer alternatives. The way that a client is looking for your items online is verification in itself that the person in question appreciates choices and decisions. With regards to customer service, ensure you give a similar chance to pick. Rather than giving the individual a mundane contact structure, offer choices, including things like Skye, toll-free numbers and live chat.
It isn’t possible to make everyone happy and business owners must be ready to deal with unsatisfied consumers. To avoid conflict, though, put as information out there as possible. Include shipping details, return policies, guarantees and additional information from the start so that you can head off any possible disgruntled consumer before an issue surfaces.
Budget for, and utilize, quality site searches. A lot of a company’s customer services is tied to how you plan your eCommerce site. To keep consumers upbeat and convert them to customers, put invest in site search functionality that makes it easy for online shoppers to find what they’re looking for. Not only does this improve the customer service experience, but it also cuts down on the number of human interactions, which are time-consuming and resource-intensive.
It’s good to keep in touch with customers, but blasting them with daily emails is not the way to go. Send them periodic updates on new products, specials or events, but sending them valuable ideas or offers right after a purchase can go much further. They still have the eCommerce site fresh in their mind and will be more inclined to make another purchase.
Whenever possible, one of the greatest tricks to improved customer service is free shipping. It might cost a couple of dollars, but that cost should be factored into the product’s retail price. Says Duarte, “Free shipping is an excellent way to impress customers and persuade them to make the initial purchase, as well as others in the future.”
A lot of companies don’t truly recognize the importance of top-notch customer service, but it definitely needs to be a primary focus. Time and again, the retail world has proven that those entities with poor customer service fail, regardless of how unique they may have been at one point.