7 Tips for excellent e-commerce customer service

7 Tips for excellent e-commerce customer service

Opinion ·

Technology is now an integral part of people’s everyday lives. The time spent online on a daily basis is increasing and people are buying more and more products and services on the internet. In 2021 retail e-commerce sales amounted to approximately $5.2 trillion worldwide. This number is expected to grow to a massive $8.1 trillion by 2026.

With the e-commerce space proliferating, consumers now have an almost infinite choice of brands from which they can buy the same products and services. For this reason, businesses now face the challenge of gaining customer loyalty and retaining customers in this competitive and dynamic business environment.

To meet customer expectations and deliver high-quality customer support for millions of online customers, businesses must prioritize e-commerce customer service.

What is e-commerce customer service?

As the name suggests, e-commerce customer service refers to the process of assisting new and old customers on their online shopping journey. E-commerce customer service aims to provide a seamless customer experience across all platforms.

E-commerce customer service exists to help customers. That can include assisting them during their purchases, answering any queries they may have, and solving problems they might face. Customer Service can help the business deal with issues such as:

  • Questions related to product availability, returns, exchanges, or delivery;
  • Resolving technical problems affecting the customer experience, such as glitches on the website.

In today’s digital world, customer service is a necessity. Research by Microsoft has shown that 95% of customers value customer service and consider it essential when choosing a brand. Other studies show that 55% of consumers will pay more for a better customer service experience.

Even though businesses know the importance of good customer service, they often struggle to offer a superior customer experience. Regarding the quality of customer service being provided, there is a substantial gap between what customers expect and what businesses are currently offering. 80% of businesses believe they have excellent customer service, but less than 10% of customers agree.

Why is e-commerce customer service important?

Having excellent e-commerce customer service can be beneficial for the business as well as the consumers. Here are a few reasons why customer service is vital for your e-commerce business.

1. Increases customer retention

Customer Retention is key to growing your business and cutting costs. Acquiring new customers can cost 5 to 10 times more than selling to an old customer. E-commerce businesses providing excellent customer service can retain more customers and ultimately increase their profits. Just a 5% increase in customer retention can increase revenue by 25-95%.

2. Improves sales conversion

When buying products online, many consumers need help to complete their purchases, leaving low sale conversion rates. It was found that 83% of customers need assistance to complete their orders. Providing your customers with good support and service and assisting them through their purchase with the help of features such as live chat can help your potential consumers complete the purchase.

3. Attracts new customers

90% of American customers tell others about their service experience. Word of mouth is a great way to attract new customers without increasing customer acquisition costs. Providing good customer service will create a positive experience for your customer, who will spread good reviews about your business.

7 Ways to improve your e-commerce customer service

Providing excellent customer service can help your business provide a positive customer experience and differentiate you from competitors. Give your customer next-level support with these seven tips for your e-commerce business.

1. Adopt an omnichannel strategy

Understanding how to interact and communicate with customers allows you to meet ever-growing customer expectations. New data shows that 66% of consumers use at least three different channels to connect with customer support during their online shopping experience. More than 70% of consumers say they would rather connect with businesses through multiple channels.

Knowing the different communication channels your customers prefer and creating an omnichannel communication strategy across those platforms can allow you to provide a seamless experience to your consumers.

By developing an omnichannel strategy, you can unify all the customer touchpoints and engage them across the different platforms. Customer service representatives can see how customers interact with the business on any communication channel and their experience.

With this approach, you can help reduce friction and redundancies in a customer's experience and provide seamless and consistent customer service across all platforms.

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2. Provide self-service options

Most customers prefer solving their issues themselves rather than engaging with customer service representatives. Data from Microsoft shows that 77% of consumers have used self-service options while shopping online.

By reacting proactively and providing self-service options to customers, you can reduce customer support requests, achieve higher customer excellence, and gain trust in your business.

A simple self-service option to add to your e-commerce business is a FAQ page. You can add answers to common questions related to shipping, returns, and exchanges and any other regular questions that your customer service representatives may be getting.

You can also integrate a support section on your website. Here you can provide step-by-step guides and video demonstrations to customers about various products and how to use them. Read more about the best support sections out there here.

Another self-service option you can provide is Live Chat. This option can help customers find quick answers to their queries and reduce support requests to customer service representatives.

Check out how you can enhance your self service support here.

3. Offer a personalized experience

Customers prefer having a personalized touch in their online shopping experience. In fact, research by Accenture found that 48% of consumers expect specialized treatment, and 33% of consumers who left a business relationship did so because of a lack of personalization.

By offering a personalized experience, your business can provide a superior customer journey from the very beginning and boost customer retention in the long run. Making customers feel special is important to conquer their loyalty and therefore have them coming back for future purchases.

To personalize the customer experience you need to collect data when onboarding new customers. Find out more about customer data collection here.

4. Encourage customer feedback

In the interest of making informed purchase decisions, consumers nowadays will look towards reviews of a product before considering a purchase - and won’t hesitate to leave one afterward, especially if the experience is extremely satisfying.

Reviews are an excellent way to convince new customers to buy from you (when positive) and gain insight into their overall experience. 77% of consumers view brands more favorably if they encourage customer feedback and respond to them. Engaging with customer reviews shows that you are actively interested in their feedback and can build brand trust and loyalty.

Customer feedback can help your business measure customer satisfaction and enhance communication with the customer. By asking your customers feedback on the experience, you can generate ideas to improve customer service and proactively address any issues your customers may face.

5. Offer support for mobile users

Most people today prefer using their smartphones to carry out any web-based activities. It is now more likely that e-commerce consumers will interact with your business using their phones rather than a desktop. Statistics show that 79% of smartphone users have purchased online using their phones in the last few months.

Creating the experience for mobile users is crucial for e-commerce businesses nowadays. 79% of millennials have a more favorable view of businesses offering mobile-responsive customer support. By creating a user-friendly interface and providing solutions to customers on mobile applications, you can enhance the customer service experience.

6. Reduce your response time

Customers who shop online highly value speed and convenience. In fact, 12% of Americans rate “lack of speed” as their number one frustration with e-commerce customer service.

Taking a lot of time to reach back to your customers can create dissatisfaction and cause a subpar customer service experience. On the other hand, reducing your response time can positively affect a customer’s e-commerce experience and generate brand loyalty and trust. You can improve your customer service by prioritizing low response times across all your communication channels.

7. Regularly evaluate your customer service

Customer needs and expectations are ever-changing. As an e-commerce business, it’s essential to evaluate the effectiveness of your customer service strategy after a given time.

By measuring key metrics such as customer responsiveness, customer retention, and sales conversions, you can assess how well your current strategy works and identify ways to optimize your customer service processes.

Once you evaluate changing consumer needs, your business can proactively work on developing solutions that can help you set future strategies and enhance the customer service experience.

How Layerise can help you improve your customer service

Having an excellent customer service strategy can help your business retain customers and boost sales. However, designing a customer service strategy that suits your business and consumer needs is vital.

Layerise can help you improve your customer service by providing tailored post-sales service and support solutions.

By incorporating various service features, your business can boost connectivity and gain deeper insights into customer demographics, feedback, and more. With Layerise’s Live Chat feature, you can give your customers real-time support and enhance their customer service experience.

To reinvent your customer’s e-commerce experience, visit the website or book a demo with Layerise today.

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