With ecommerce sales predicted to hit $4.5 trillion in 2021, the retail landscape is changing dramatically. This shift to online shopping has made ecommerce customer service a top priority for online businesses, which often depend more on customer loyalty than traditional brick-and-mortar retailers.
Research from PwC found that 73% of all people value customer experience as an important factor in their purchasing decisions, so subpar customer service can really hurt ecommerce brands.
Today we’ll go over eight strategies to take your ecommerce customer service to the next level.
I. Prioritize Customer Relationships
Your relationship with your customers forms the foundation of your ecommerce business. By prioritizing your customer relations, you can improve retention and increase brand loyalty.
More than ever before, customer service is a key part of the customer experience. It’s estimated that it costs five times more to attract new customers than to retain existing customers, so your brand’s relationship with your customers has a real impact on your business’s bottom line. If you can resolve a customer’s problem and keep their business in the future, you’ll save time and money while preserving your brand’s reputation.
II. Be Available 24/7
One of the main advantages of online shopping is that customers are free to browse and make purchases at any time of day. But this also means that many customers expect customer support whenever they need it.
To improve their support experience, many online businesses offer a 24/7 customer service line, whether it’s a phone number or a live chat option that connects customers with a customer service representative.
To make this service more effective and less time consuming, brands can use chatbots to automate conversations. Because chatbots are so customizable, brands can program them to instantly answer common questions and respond to customer inquiries outside typical business hours. This allows customers to complete purchases more quickly rather than abandoning their online shopping carts.
III. Automate, Automate, Automate
While many customers want a quick, convenient ecommerce customer service experience, they also often prefer to ask questions and resolve problems in real time during a conversation. But the expectation of 24/7 customer service means it’s not always possible for a brand to offer live customer service representatives whenever customers need help.
Enter AI chatbots, which use artificial intelligence and machine learning to automatically resolve questions without human intervention and help multiple customers at once.
AI chatbots use your existing resources, like FAQs or knowledge base articles, to answer customer questions and resolve issues around the clock. Businesses can even train AI chatbots to learn a specific voice and tone that supports their brand image.
By automating customer service requests with an AI chatbot, businesses can let chatbots resolve simple questions, allowing their customer service representatives to focus on more complex queries and build a lean ecommerce customer service team.
IV. Track Relevant Customer Service KPIs
For businesses looking to seriously improve their ecommerce customer service, it’s critical to track key performance indicators (KPIs), like your average handle time and customer retention rate.
By measuring your customer service experience with objective metrics, you can identify trends and pain points, allowing you to create a data-driven plan to improve your customer experience.
For example, tracking your customer satisfaction score (CSAT) can be as simple as asking customers to provide feedback after a support call or sending them a brief online survey asking them to rate their experience. The higher your CSAT number, the more satisfied your customers are overall.
Learn more about the 12 customer service KPIs every business should track.
V. Go Multichannel
High-quality customer service is rarely possible with only a single customer support hotline. By developing a multichannel ecommerce customer service strategy, ecommerce businesses can be wherever their customers need them, whether it’s on Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, online live chat, or even in direct messages on Twitter.
In fact, a study found that companies with the strongest multichannel customer engagement strategies retain an average of 89% of their customers, compared to an average of 63% in retail.
Pro-tip: Use these ready-to-go customer service templates to get your multichannel approach up and running fast.
VI. Get Personal
A personalized shopping experience has become the standard in ecommerce. Data from Accenture shows that 91% of consumers are more likely to shop with brands that provided personalized offers and recommendations. The most successful ecommerce businesses collect customer data to build smart customer profiles to improve future customer service interactions.
For example, CM.com’s Mobile Service Cloud enables online businesses to integrate customer service conversations with their existing CRM or CDP to build comprehensive customer profiles. Armed with this data, you can offer personalized product recommendations and special offers, which can build customer loyalty and even drive impulse purchases while reducing returns.
VII. Chat With Customers Where They’re Already Spending Time
As we mentioned earlier, multichannel options have become the standard in ecommerce customer service. More than just a way to keep in touch with friends and family, popular mobile messaging apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are also great tools for ecommerce customer service.
Our Mobile Service Cloud allows businesses to manage all their customer conversations from one easy-to-use Omnichannel Inbox. Instead of trying to keep up with multiple messaging apps, you can streamline all conversations to increase quality and efficiency for your customers and provide consistent customer support on all platforms.
VIII. Offer Proactive Ecommerce Customer Support
An exceptional customer service experience is almost always a proactive one, where a brand anticipates potential issues and resolves them before they happen. For ecommerce brands, which are typically limited to virtual interactions with customers, proactive support can help build a more positive relationship between an online store and its customer base.
For example, set up automated communications, like customer satisfaction surveys and online product review requests, when customers receive their products. By capturing customer feedback as early as possible, brands can reduce the number of negative reviews and create a positive experience that will increase their customer retention rate.
Elevate Your Ecommerce Customer Service Experience With CM.com’s Mobile Service Cloud
Ready to transform your business’s approach to ecommerce customer service? Get started with CM.com's Mobile Service Cloud, an all-in-one customer service software that enables you to engage customers where they’re already spending their time.
Our Mobile Service Cloud leverages smart data segments and automation to ease the burden on your staff while increasing customer satisfaction across the board. With an Omnichannel Inbox to manage all customer conversations, a chatbot to provide instant answers 24/7, and the ability to collaborate with internal and external teams, businesses can optimize their customer service with a single user-friendly solution.
Contact us today to learn more about Mobile Service Cloud!