E-commerce Customer Service: Best Practices for 2021
Blog: MattsenKumar Blog
Amazon’s journey to over 90 million Prime Users alone in the United States is filled with lessons on customer service. By creating an exceptional customer experience that includes offering quality customer support by offering quick resolution through no question asked return and instant refund, Amazon now boasts of 197 million active monthly users.
To offer quality customer service, e-commerce companies first need to identify prevalent challenges faced by customers. By traversing challenges through methodologies like mystery shopping, e-commerce platforms can identify the root cause. Once the root causes or affected channels are identified, e-commerce marketplaces can acclimatize customer services accordingly.
By listening actively to customer feedback, queries, and traversing communities/forums, marketplaces can develop an understanding of the challenges customers face and then devise paradigms to render those challenges obsolete.
The State of the E-commerce Industry
Varied e-commerce players have leveraged customer service best practices to reduce customer churn. These players are continuously working on the catalog, product description, and website in the background to ensure a quality experience. Here are some statistics that list varied challenges e-commerce customers are facing:
- 8% of customers requested customer support for lost in transit packages
- 12% of customers request customer service in finding the right product
- 57% of customers faced an issue when buying products from international stores
- According to Statista, customers from India and France connect to customer service when facing issues with online payment
Importance of Customer Service in the E-commerce Industry?
If we look at the reports and studies, product discovery, logistics services, online payment, and post-sale services are the measure reasons, customers require support. To designing customer service around these measure challenges faced by customers, e-commerce stores can ace their on-site customer experience.
With quality support to every customer, e-commerce marketplaces can expect:
- The rise in customer retention
- The precedented rise in average order value
- Returning customers and referral sales
- Improved Net Promoter Score and CSAT score
- Word of mouth marketing
- Reduction in cost of customer acquisition
Customer service strategies that can assist e-commerce players:
Live Chat: Through live chat support, online stores can direct customers to the desired product instantly. Live chat is a modern-day tool that is being leveraged by professionals and millennials for identifying the right product, asking questions about a product even when busy in day-to-day activities.
Self-Help: A huge percentage of customers today want to solve problems on their own. Lack of self-help literature coaxes customers into picking up their phones and dialing customer service for support. With quality self-help documents, customers can help themselves troubleshooting problems.
Social Listening: Following customers’ feedback loops on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook can help businesses offer better customer services. By listening to common problems reported by customers of your competitor, you can devise a new paradigm that can be sold as a better alternative.
E-commerce Customer Service: Best Practices for 2021
1. Multichannel Support
Taking a cue from what e-commerce players went through in 2020, developing multichannel support is now necessary. Customers are now getting accustomed to accessing quality support through new channels like live chat, social media, and the self-help section.
By leaving any of these popular channels out, e-commerce companies can affect the overall customer experience. Quality multichannel support allows customers to find the right support at the right time, which can go a long way in impacting the lives of customers and winning them for life.
2. Quick Response & Instant Resolution
Amazon’s grand success can be solely attributed to 1-day delivery and no-question asked to return. These two offerings have helped Amazon rise above its competitors and the mentioned attributes are enough to win a customer’s trust. With quick resolution, e-commerce stores can make customers feel valued. Quality support and quick resolution can together set up an e-commerce store for grand success.
To run effective customer resolution solutions, e-commerce stores will have to collaborate with quality call center service providers and leverage their industry expertise. With a proven paradigm working in the background, e-commerce players can build a sustainable business.
3. Impact the Customer Journey
Customer service is not necessarily meant for post-sale support; e-commerce stores need to leverage customer service solutions for improving the customer journey. By displaying phrases like “having trouble ordering? Get in touch with us” and redirecting customers to a trained professional, who can help them find the right product is a sure-shot way of winning loyal customers.
Leveraging social media and live chat channels for impacting customer journey is soon going to be a mainstream solution and any e-commerce business not offering the same will suffer immensely.
4. Create a Feedback Loop
Passé are the days when collecting customer feedback was a tough and expensive task. Today, with customers willing to share their feedback, e-commerce marketplaces can build feedback that helps businesses in simplifying the online shopping experience.
Not necessarily a feedback loop needs to end with customer’s opinions, businesses can leverage the experience of their agents too. With agents’ feedback, e-commerce stores can identify the most prevalent challenge and render it obsolete for-ever. Such a loophole that involves customers, support agents, sellers, and key stakeholders, will become a weapon of mass impact.
5. Increase Seller Involvement
For many customers, e-commerce stores are an opportunity to solve their daily life problems. People from remotest villages and towns are now relying on e-commerce stores for delivering products that will either improve their efficiency or reduce their challenges.
Often these products when delivered are unable to fulfill customer’s expectations, lack of education and awareness about the product is the measure reason, customers end up filing a return request. By involving sellers in customer service, e-commerce players can reduce such return requests.
Either through self-help documents or throw video tutorials too which customers can be redirected by support agents, e-commerce stores can reduce or control the increasing rate of return requests.
Final Thoughts on E-commerce Customer Service
2020 was a learning experience, e-commerce players understood the importance of having multichannel support, it kept them alive during the pandemic and stopped customers from panicking. Customers would have gone bonkers had there been no channel for quality support when the lockdown was imposed and agents were unable to work from home.
In 2021, the learnings of 2020 are becoming lessons, and e-commerce players that bank upon these lessons are going to be successful in offering quality support. With affordable solutions and path-breaking paradigms, e-commerce marketplaces can win customer’s loyalty and become the next Amazon.
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