When doing business online, you need have to provide exceptional customer service to the people who buy your products online. You have to make sure that your customers are taken care of, and that you don’t scare them off with negative experiences and mistakes that could’ve been prevented. And how you deliver customer service matters.
What Is Customer Service?
Customer service is the most essential part of a customer’s in-store experience. There are two possible outcomes. Either:
Your staff and their demeanor scares people away from buying something and from coming back, OR
The servicing is respectful and caring to customers that it enhances the buying experience and encourage shoppers to buy more.
How you and your staff interact with the public will decide if whether or not shoppers will come to your online store and shop.
When you encourage more engagement in your online store, and have a good reputation on the Internet, not only will you see recurring sales, but it also gives you an advantage among your online competitors. In fact, it’s been reported that about 86% of consumers are willing to pay more for the sake of receiving better care.
So, how can you make customer service better for your customers, or those who want to give your online store a chance?
In this article, we cover the five best tips that will help you attract customers, and keep them for many years to come with excellent customer service.
Set The Right Mood
“As a business owner, you can create an environment that makes customers feel comfortable about spending money in your store,” says Alicia Lambert, an educator at Big Assignments and Assignment Help. “Imagine if your online store was like a physical store, where people can walk in and be fascinated by the background music playing and the lovely décor and aromatherapy. These are what transforms a customer’s experience for the better. Therefore, your online store should do the same, by being appealing and relaxing to customers. Even if you make small changes to the colors and themes on your site, it goes a long way to making the experience even better.”
Know Your Customers’ Needs
Ask yourself: What do your customers need right now?
This helps you get a good idea on how to provide great customer service online. Meet customers where they are. If they’re already on your site, answers to any questions that they might have should be easily to access. This lets them stay on your site longer, and eventually buy something from your store.
Plus, you need to be able to reach out to customers whenever something goes wrong for them. Email support is one solution to their problem; but most times, customers want answers right away. Consider having chat bots on your site, where customers can ask questions and get answers in a timely manner.
Have A Plan for customer service improvement
No matter what, a business has to have a plan; and online stores are no exception to this. Without a plan, you’ll risk creating the following (mainly improvised) problems for both you and your customers:
- Customer support not answering customer inquiries
- Delays coming from customer support
- Lack of judgment from both management and staff
- Inconsistent answers from customer support
Therefore, you need a plan of action, so that these issues can be avoided. Keep the following questions in mind, when creating a plan:
- Which people in customer support should answer customers’ inquiries?
- What information is needed to find answers to inquiries? (Ordered items, shipping times, etc.)
- What channels of communication are acceptable to answer inquiries?
- What information should a customer have in order to return an item?
- What is the appropriate process of dealing with a claim?
- What are acceptable means of compensation for customers? (Ex. discounts, gifts, etc.)
Also, remember that it doesn’t matter how big or small your business is – you always have to have a plan set up.
Cross-Sell Products Strategically
If a customer buys something, then a store may try to cross-sell something else to them, to keep them interested. However, cross-selling has to be done strategically, or else you’ll scare off customers from making any purchases to begin with.
If your online competitors are known to cross-sell, then learn how they’re doing so, and learn from their mistakes. Even though businesses tend to promote various other items and recommendations along with the first-mentioned product to convince customers to spend more money, this can sometimes backfire if you’re pressuring the customer to buy more.
Instead, practice good promotion practices by helping customers understand each brand of a certain product. Also, have similar products be in the same category as the product that they’re looking for. Categorizing by brand, relevance, and price range helps customers find what they need, without wasting time searching through your site. Finally, decide what you want to promote or how you want to cross-sell products. Then, as soon as you and your staff figure it out, update your online store to create a better flow for your customers.
Encourage Customer Feedback
“About seventy percent of the customer experience revolves around how the customer felt about the experience,” says Clyde Yeager, a teacher at UKWritings and Boomessays. “When your customers feel welcomed and cared for on their first visit, they are more likely to come back. Therefore, the best way to evaluate what you need to do for future customer experiences is to encourage them to leave you feedback. Sending your shoppers surveys via email lets them leave feedback on their recent visit – whether it’s praising you for the service, or suggesting necessary changes to the site to make the experience better. You can even allow customers to enter anonymous feedback, and rate your products and services. And as you take action, based on this feedback, it shows customers that you’re willing to listen to them about any questions or concerns, thus building a positive online shopping experience for them.”
At the end of the day, it’s all about caring for your customers. Therefore, it’s imperative to adapt to your customers’ likings and fix whatever they don’t like so that they can keep shopping in the future.