Good customer service is central to improving customer loyalty, encouraging positive referrals, and increasing sales. Retaining customers is especially important for e-commerce stores, where online competitors are just a few clicks away. Whether it’s by email, telephone, or live chat, if you get customer service right, every interaction with consumers can be turned into a positive experience. Improve the level of service you provide and in the long term, you should see an increase in online sales. Here are nine “no shit sherlock” ways to get you on your way to e-commerce bliss:
1. Offer Free Content
One of the most effective ways to boost your customer service reputation is to share your expertise with free content on various aspects of your business. Give the support your prospects and customers need by answering every potential question with clear and concise articles or white papers. Offering expert advice before a sale will go a long way toward improving your credibility and strengthening your reputation.
2. Train Your Customer Service Team
Every customer interaction is a chance to improve your company image and increase long-term sales. If you have the resources, empower your customer service team with up-to-date and regular training. Job satisfaction, productivity, and loyalty usually increase with newfound skills, which should quickly lead to more positive customer interactions, happier customers, more referrals, and hopefully more sales.
3. Answer Frequently Asked Questions
Having a user-friendly FAQ section link on the homepage will help reduce the number of telephone and email queries. No customer will thank you for having to call you up simply to enquire about returning a product. Liaise with customer support staff to determine the most common questions that need to be answered. Then go the extra mile and publish the answers to more unusual customer problems. Simply including a “Help” link on every page will reassure users and reinforce trust.
4. Pamper Disappointed Customers
Disappointed customers should be treated with extra care. If your business makes a mistake, don’t just fix the problem – give the customer more than they expected. It’s worth it in the long run. As well as keeping loyal customers on your side, it should increase referrals.
5. Publish Your Customer Service Hours
If you don’t do it already, publish your customer service hours, address, phone numbers and email address on every page of your e-commerce website. At the very least, have a clear link to your “Contact Us” page. It will help visitors trust your company more, even before any business transaction has taken place.
6. Remind Customers Your Still Exist with Regular Deals
Reminding prospects and past customers that you’re still around can go a long way to increasing long-term sales, and also strengthen your customer service reputation. Try offering regular deals through email marketing messages, or give away free products, services, and information. It all helps to set you apart from the crowd.
7. Thank Your Customers
Many businesses still fail to thank their customers for their purchases. Remember that there’s a lot of competition – especially online – and if you take the opportunity to thank people for their commitment, they’re more likely to make future purchases. To promote further sales, why not offer an exclusive deal or coupon on the “Thank You” page?
8. Respond Quickly to Customer Questions (or Complaints)
Failing to respond quickly to customers’ questions – by email, for example – could be losing you countless sales. Perhaps your sales team lack the time or resources. An automated email responder system stating your commitment to respond within “x” amount of hours could be enough to reassure people. Quick deliveries of goods can also dramatically improve your customer service reputation, and encourage repeat orders.
9. Check on Your Customer Service Team
Let your customer service team know that you will occasionally be checking up on the quality of their service. Asking questions anonymously will give you a good idea of how efficient, professional, and sales-oriented your team really are. It’s a quick and simple way to detect any customer service problems and will also keep employees on their toes.
In a Nutshell…
Single out any large, successful e-commerce business, and you’ll probably discover they have an excellent customer service reputation. Use these suggestions to give your prospects and customers a more positive experience and improve the reputation of your company. Improving customer service doesn’t have to be expensive and time-consuming, but it can dramatically improve sales and lead to more loyal, long-term customers.