Something all ecommerce stores must strive to do is to avoid the mishandling of their customers. Your customers are going to have questions and concerns about their purchases, and when friendly resolves are not provided, customers become unsatisfied and turn to your competition to fulfill their needs instead.
The key here is to have a two-way relationship with your customers, where when they seek to contact you or to have their questions answered, there are already a set of satisfactory measures put into place for them to reach you.
The following are 5 essentials to customer service practices that you should implement or place into consideration to avoid customer service issues in ecommerce:
1. Create an FAQ Page
Your customers are going to be coming to you with questions. That’s good! That means that you have people who are interested in your products and services. However, some of these questions are going to be repeated as new customers come along, and you might not be able to always be there to provide a great answer every time.
This is where an FAQ page can come to your rescue.
FAQ stands for Frequently Asked Questions. Creating such a page will allow your customers to get the answers to their most basic questions right away and on their own.
Use the FAQ page to clear up common causes for confusion and as a place for customers to gather answers to questions you get asked the most, especially on questions regarding billing, shipping, returns, warranties, and delivery.
Having an effectively executed FAQ page should drastically bring down some of those repetitive queries and turn those frequent questions into more sales.
Stay in touch with your customers through autoresponders. Autoresponders are essentially e-newsletters that are sent automatically when an action performed on your site triggers a message to be sent out to a customer via email.
Autoresponders are a great way to send out welcome messages to new blog subscribers, thank you notes, transactional messages for bills and receipts, updates, birthday emails, re-engagement emails, and more.
There are a great many ways for you to use autoresponders to create a great customer service experience and as a way to keep customers loyal and coming back to your site.
Check out Shopify’s App Store to browse autoresponder apps.
3. Allow Customers to Track their Orders
Tracking is important to ecommerce businesses because of just how important it is to customers. Simply allowing customers to track their order places their minds at ease when they can follow along with the shipping process. It makes your ecommerce business appear transparent and reliable, which in turn minimizes the need for customers to reach out and communicate with you regarding an order status.
The vast majority of buyers rate the ability to track their order status as having a significant impact on their overall satisfaction from their online purchases. One of the most powerful emotions that your online customer experiences from making an online purchase are delayed gratification and anxious anticipation, that is why many want and enjoy the option of being able to track their orders and to be able to follow their purchase through every step of the fulfillment process.
It is also a way of reassuring your customer that all the details of their purchase are in order and that it is on its way to them. A good tracking system will allow your customers to know:
- When the order is approved
- When it is shipped
- The geographical location of the order
- An approximation of when the item will be delivered
Being able to track orders is a key component to the overall customer experience and most customers come to expect this service, so it is important that you follow through.
4. Offer Live-Chat
Offering live chat can get your customers’ problems solved quickly and easily. Live chat is starting to become the most preferred platform for getting in touch with businesses because it is convenient and it spares everyone involved the awkward phone call conversations.
Live chat isn’t just great for your customers; it’s also great for you, the business owner. Offering live chat from your Shopify website can be a great way for you to boost revenue and gather useful consumer insights. For these reasons, we have seen an increase in live chat as the preferred customer service channel, compared to email and over-the-phone interaction. Customers are reportedly more satisfied by live chat as it saves them a lot of effort to get in touch with you.
Unlike email, chatting with your customers allows for immediate support. This is great, because it allows you to satisfy your customers right away, and also gives you a better chance at defusing a potentially negative situation on your website before it can escalate and extend to social media and other more public platforms.
Being able to respond faster to your customers will also help you garner more leads. In today’s fast-paced world, your potential customers don’t want to wait around for too long for a response. You have competitors that they can turn to and why should they wait for you to email back when other online stores are just a click away?
Thankfully, adding live-chat applications to your store isn’t difficult and you will have a list of options to choose from on Shopify’s App Store.
5. Educate Customers with Product Information
Product information is a vital part of making online sales. It’s what helps sway your customers in making a purchase decision. When customers are coming to your online store and viewing your products, they look at the product image and the product description to learn about your wares. They are looking for transparency, reliability, and all the details and information that they can get in order to feel comfortable about their final decision to buy your products.
If you aren’t providing your customers with enough details from the product page, you can be sure that your competition is. And we don’t just mean online competition; we are also talking about the physical stores, where your potential customers can come into physical contact with the products.
To remedy this, you have to give your consumers as much information as they need to feel comfortable about their purchase. A great way to do this is through product images. Product images can convey a lot of visual information to your consumers. Make use of your product descriptions as well to give all the relevant specifications. Videos also help show your products in use, and don’t forget about infographics! People love a good infographic because it marries text and images to efficiently give out information that customers can absorb quickly and effectively.
Go the extra mile with your product images, product descriptions, and use infographics to educate your consumers about your product, and they will be ready to go from “just browsing”, to being ready to hit the buy button.
Back to You
All the 5 customer service tips mentioned above can play a vital role in the customer relations of any online store and you will find that many ecommerce businesses incorporate most, if not all, methods mentioned above.
One of the best exercises for any online shop owner to do is to just go ahead and put yourself in your customer’s shoes. You must have a critical eye and browse your online store from the perspective of a potential buyer. This is one way for you to drastically improve your customer service without going through negative customer feedback first. While you are doing this, you must ask yourself: Would I make a purchase from this online store? Are my FAQs helpful enough? Am I satisfied with the communication channels offered to me?
Your customers are the backbone of your business, so they must always be at the forefront of what you do and you should never leave them hanging by making sure you provide enough ways for them to interact directly with your brand so that you can resolve questions and issues smoothly.
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