The customer service experience in eCommerce has changed dramatically in the last year and a half. With the COVID-19 pandemic, shopping in traditional stores has plummeted. As a result, consumers and businesses alike have taken the plunge into the digital world. eCommerce has become the leading platform for transacting retail (and even restaurant) purchases without having to set foot outside the home. Allen Woo, a business expert, explains how customer service in the eCommerce space can be optimized.
Most large companies and retailers already had an online presence even before the pandemic, but the coronavirus accelerated their digital transformation plans. Many small businesses only started focusing on online sales in the wake of the pandemic, but now their eCommerce sales make up the largest percentage of their revenues.
“Given the new landscape, small businesses will have no choice but to make a digital transformation, as it is the only way to remain competitive,” Woo says. “You can establish your online presence with a user-friendly website that allows customers to access different types of communication channels to contact you and offer customer support before and after the purchase.”
The customer lifecycle doesn’t start on its own. You and your eCommerce customer service team must get in touch with current and potential customers. You can do this, for example, by creating promotional campaigns, social media advertising, or email marketing campaigns.
Another way to engage and interact with potential customers is to use social listening as the monitoring strategy. This technique not only seeks out and contacts customers who mention them on social networks, but also those who use certain words in their posts. By tracking these keywords and phrases, you may be able to address customer concerns that might go unnoticed by support agents.
Make sure your agents ask for the customer’s name at the beginning of a phone or written conversation. Teach customer service agents to listen and understand customer concerns with empathy. Train agents to collect as much information as possible about customer preferences.
This data may include their preferred products, what times of day they are available, or what communication channel they prefer to use. This information can be used to personalize your marketing messages and future support interactions, which will help you build lasting customer relationships. If you make a customer feel valued and understood, they are more likely to choose your brand again for future purchases.
“Build an effective eCommerce customer service experience team,” Woo recommends. “You’ve probably contacted customer service at least once in your life. You know how annoying and time-consuming it can be. But if you have a dedicated e-commerce customer support team with the right tools, you’ll be able to respond to your customers’ needs as quickly and efficiently as possible. This way, you’ll be able to decrease wait times and customer frustration.”
Your eCommerce customer support team can increase your company’s revenue by solving problems quickly and, whenever possible, at the first interaction. The faster your support team responds to customer concerns, the better image they will have of your company. In the end, this will help you build brand loyalty and help them become repeat customers.
Ultimately, your eCommerce customer service experience will determine whether potential customers will choose your brand. By investing in the right processes and tools, you can ensure that your e-commerce customer service experience is quality and efficient.
It also provides ongoing value to your business by collecting relevant customer data at different touch points. The true value of excellent customer service is long-term, loyal customers. Even better, they will attract new customers to your online business, ask fewer questions and buy more often.