Customer service allows you to hit the hearts of your followers. And any good brand shouldn’t just have customers, they should have followers. Brand advocates, even. You get that by providing the absolute best customer service possible. That simple letter to a girl that couldn’t spell landed them publicity on dozens of sites. It got them backlinks for better SEO and more social media followers. But most importantly, it got them brand advocates. People resonated with it. And that’s just one example. Great customer service has the power to multiply your eCommerce brand in ways you can’t even imagine. Customer service is just about the most important part of your eCommerce business. According to a report by a trusted and reputed organization “97% of customers say customer service is very important to them. Interestingly, by 2020, customer experience has been predicted to take over price and product as the key brand differentiator.
If you have anything near a long-term customer relationship goal for your eCommerce business, offering an exceptional customer service can help you acquire and retain customers. From the data above you’ll notice that millennials have higher expectations for eCommerce customer service today than they had a year ago. You should take this data seriously as millennial customers are expected to spend more than $200 billion annually starting in 2017 and over $10 trillion dollars during their lifetime. More so, the eCommerce business is filled with lots of competition. If customers are not happy with your customer service, there are a thousand and one other choices for them to move on to and trust me they’ll move quickly. That being said, customer service should be at the center of your eCommerce business strategy — and maximizing it, is even important.
Because, at the end of the day you’re not only satisfying your customers but ultimately, you want to grow your revenue. If you run an ecommerce store, then you don’t need to know that it’s tough out there. While ecommerce is trending upward, so is the number of competitors squeezing into your space. Sometimes it can feel like you’re the mom and pop corner shop up against the big shiny supermarket that’s opened next door. It’s tempting to keep your focus on getting new customers through your own front door, but there’s another way to hold your own against the competition: Offer superior customer service. From live chat to help desks to strategies for scaling, here are the 6 tips on how to help deliver sensational ecommerce customer service. Even better, the more you can integrate these into one system, the easier your job will be.
Multichannel strategy blends different promotional and distribution channel, positioning you to reach, connect and build rapport with your customers. An effective multichannel strategy is often optimized for results — that’s the end goal. It’s no secret that eCommerce competition is killing most businesses today. Sadly, it gets confusing when brands are unable to determine the channel to use for customer service. When this happens, the brand suffers while the customers rule. This isn’t ideal; it’s supposed to be a win/win situation. Truth be told, if you want to deliver top notch customer service, you don’t have to rely on one channel. Gone are the days when you limit customers to a single communication channel for customer service. Developing a multichannel strategy means you’ll be where your customers are.
Are your customers on Facebook, WhatsApp, live chat, do they prefer to be serviced by email or phone calls? Make it happen for them. The goal is to take customers service to your customers — and not make them come or ask for it. Make them happy. Remove the pains of having to wait for several days before replying to their queries. When you establish these ecommerce customer service channels, ensure you let your customers know that you can help them through the channels they are already in. Most importantly, it shouldn’t end with providing your customers with several customer service options. You should ensure you deliver quality customer service across all the channels you provide; otherwise, it’ll be a complete waste of time and resources.
Live chat has quickly cropped up as a “must-have” website feature. You can also use live chat to get customer feedback, engage with your customers, and close sales. It’s pretty versatile. While you certainly should use live chat if you have the bandwidth, don’t use it if you don’t have time to commit. Why? Because 60% of people hate waiting longer than a minute for a live chat reply. Is that to say you have to answer every message within a minute? No, but you definitely can’t keep people waiting. You’d wait to install live chat on your site until you’re ready to be around, or you’ve hired someone to watch it when you can’t. Live chats on websites provide fast means to communicate with customer’s service representatives and get customer challenges resolved.
Customers may decide to leave your website if they have challenges trying to purchase on your eCommerce site — especially if they remember that you took forever to reply their emails. But with live chat, they can quickly contact you and get their issue resolved instantly or as quick as possible. If you’re already providing live chat on your e-commerce site, always check your chat history periodically to know how effective your conversations with customers have been. In fact, if you’ve got traffic then this is possibly the only ROI that can be measured in minutes. Live chat helps you and your team to be more productive, and also more consistent in your responses, as you can build in some pre-written responses. Make time to go back through your chat transcripts to see if there are places to address customer feedback or to follow-up about issues raised outside the primary reason the customer may have initiated the chat.
Personalized Email Campaigns
Automation is a tricky thing. On one hand, it can help you become super-efficient and frees up your time to focus on more important things, like marketing and growth. On the other hand, it can come off as inhuman, robotic, and down-right annoying. People don’t take well to being automated. Unless they don’t know they’re talking to a robot! That’s the power of intelligent automation. The great thing about this is that you engage with customers who may have not found the help they were looking for, and would have left if you didn’t reach out to them. And you did it automatically, without lifting a finger. Have you ever walked into a shopping mall and one of the staff recognized you, reached out to you? How will you feel? Excited? Non-personalized emails can be easily ignored as the customer may assume you’re not referring to him/her — maybe it’s an error. But a personalized message that mentions your customer’s name will most likely boost your email open rate. And customers will feel happy and safe.
As retailers, you have to face the fact that sometimes problems due to faulty products will crop up. It’s unfortunate, but it happens. It’s how you react to these issues that separate the serious players from the pack. Offering a warranty is not just a tick in the ‘increased conversion’ box. Warranties are there for a reason and so, when called upon, make it easy for your customers and deal with the issue quickly and fairly. Consider, too, that if you’re using a customer service platform to track interactions, you’ll be able to see if the customer is new, or frequently requires help, and so on.
Use Customer Service Software
Using a CRM (customer relationship management) software can help you streamline the process — the most popular way of tackling that type of problem is through ticketing: it’s all part of the CRM software. It’s a strategy for managing all your company’s relationships and interactions with customers and potential customers. It helps you stay connected to them, streamline processes and improve your profitability. A good CRM software will make life easy for you by automating a lot of processes and also help you make informed decisions to increase your ROI. Ticketing systems allow you to do more than send email. You can hook up your social media accounts, or add an integrated VoIP voice system or live chat. You’ll be able to keep a transparent train of all customer interactions and reply much, much faster.
It’s important to measure your customer satisfaction success because it’s the only realistic method of improving your overall customer service and marketing strategy. If you’re using customer relation management software you most likely have this feature included, you can ask customers to complete surveys after each customer support session about how they feel about the customer service they’ve received. It’s simple, but the feedback can act as a benchmark for effective measurement. Ensure you have the best automation strategy to help you fulfill all customers order efficiently and timely too. Manual order fulfillment systems are slow and inefficient, you’ll experience lots of errors, of course, and we’re humans. Using an automated system that will handle the whole process from the beginning of the order to delivery is better and will most likely make your customers happy with your brand.
Be Active At Social Media
It’s 2017, and social media isn’t going away. That should be reason enough to get good at this. But how do you get good at social media customer service? You don’t actually have to stare at your social media feed all day (as tempting as that may be) to know when your customers need help. There are some very useful tools now that will alert you when you get mentioned. They range from free search tools like Social Mention to full-featured paid products like Mention. These tools can help you stay on top of when and where your product gets mentioned so that you can respond to your customers. They’re great for marketing, but just as important for customer support. Enough of the sales emails, blog post, and other marketing content. Starts telling your brand story in a way that will resonate with your customers and make them want to always buy from your brand willingly.
Customers hate being sold to. But educating and engaging them with the information they are looking for, will cause them to be consistent with your brand, keep your brand fresh in their memory, and they’ll become brand advocates. That’s what you want. Content marketing allows you to educate your customers and make them buy continually, without pushing them around. Your customers are mobile, are you? This is very essential. Don’t neglect mobile customers. Make provisions for them now. Customer service over social media is becoming increasingly important. In fact, if you have social media channels set up, you should expect to provide customer service through them. Why? Because that’s what your customers will expect. Consider using a customer service platform that integrates social channels to make your job easier.
Part of any good knowledge base is a slew of explainer videos. An explainer video is exactly what it sounds like – a video that explains what your product is, how it’s used, and what it does. Obviously, this is really more for complicated or new products that people aren’t sure what they do. A good explanatory video should be something which explains a complex problem clearly and simply. It touches on pain points – not wanting to spread germs and not wanting boogers on you. It puts a few cool ideas in there that you may not have known Creating an explainer video can make customer service easier for you by simply having less people asking questions. You just answer them in the video, or direct people to the video who ask about it.
So how do you create an explainer video? You can go somewhere like DemoDuck. Alternatively, places like UpWork or Fiverr might do it for you, too. Just watch out for anyone with poor reviews. Or, if you feel like tackling the project yourself, you can use a tool like Animaker. Videos are extremely useful pre- and post-sales, especially as an extension of your self-service offering. Consider the value of putting “getting started” materials or detailed walk-throughs of advanced features, or relationship-building material like hints, tips, or advice on your site somewhere customers can easily access. Videos don’t have to be epic or super expensive. These days you can make a decent video on your iPhone or by using a screen capture tool.