5 Key Pillars of Ecommerce Customer Service in 2022
We live in a world that is constantly changing, yesterday’s methods may no longer be working in the business of tomorrow. We are observing the rapid development of new technologies, infrastructure, and generational changes. Those changes are good for eCommerce businesses. People have turned to online shopping as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the e-commerce sector has been growing rapidly since then, changing the buying behavior of the customer and the nature of business. Focusing on e-commerce customer service is more important than ever as more consumers are willing to buy online. One bad customer service experience can hit your customer’s perception of your brand and products. Whether through Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, eCommerce forums and communities, or review sites you cannot afford to disregard client complaints. Customer service should always be your top priority. When you prioritize your customers via customer service you gain customer trust and boost sales.
Customer service that works successfully in a physical business can be reproduced in eCommerce. It is still a key differentiator in the digital age for winning customers’ trust and loyalty and developing relationships with them.
But what does eCommerce customer service mean? What are the key pillars of eCommerce customer service? To help answer these questions we’ve made this article.
In this blog post we’ll look at:
- The definition of e-commerce customer service
- 5 key pillars of e-commerce customer service
The Definition of E-commerce Customer Service
In the previous article we talked about how to start an e-commerce business and now that you know what steps you need to make, let’s imagine that you have an online store. You’ve got products to sell, you’ve got a marketing plan in place, and you’ve got the logistics for e-commerce. But will it be enough for your eCommerce customer to make a second purchase? How do you keep him or her coming back for more?
Customer service is the name of the game.
What is eCommerce customer service? Customer service is the assistance you provide to your clients so they may interact with your brand in a simple and enjoyable way both before and after they purchase and use your products or services. To ensure customer satisfaction and encourage repeat purchases this direct one-on-one interaction between the existing consumer and you is essential. Keeping the existing customers happy is just as important as bringing new customers to your eCommerce store. Excellent customer service builds customer trust. The level of trust your consumers have for your eCommerce business will determine how loyal they are to the products and services you offer. Customer trust and loyalty are both crucial factors that affect your business growth. No matter what kind of business you run, small or big, you need to deliver excellent customer service. You need to go above and beyond to make your customer feel valued as customer service offers help, direction, and solutions at every stage of the customer experience, which affects how your customers feel about your company and how they interact with you. Whenever your customers are happy your business is prosperous. Poor customer service can be fatal to your business and it can put you behind your competitors who may not have a product as good as yours. Customer expectations continue to climb due to constantly evolving modern technologies and increased demand for online shopping as these days customers expect convenience and speed. Understanding your client’s journey and what they require at each touchpoint will help you determine the kind of experience they are seeking.
Great customer service doesn’t just appear out of nowhere so you need to know what works best in building efficient e-commerce customer service for your company.
Here’s a closer look at the 5 pillars of e-commerce customer service:
5 Key Pillars of Ecommerce Customer Service
1. Building Trust with your E-commerce Customers
Treat others the way you want to be treated. How can you not love this saying? It means more than just showing kindness to others. Think about your customers the way you want to be thought of. When you provide exceptional customer service and are dedicated to your customer’s needs, it shows that you treat your customers with respect. It shows that you are willing to help them with any problems they might be experiencing with your products and services. Going the extra mile for your clients you get an opportunity to know your clients on a more personal level. That way, you can exceed their expectations. Your customers will treat you the way you treat them and they will continue to do business with you because they know they can trust you. It’s a long-term investment.
“The most expensive thing in the world is trust. It can take years to earn & just a matter of seconds to lose”
Building trust with your e-commerce customers is extremely important and it takes time. You need to be consistent and attentive at all times. Whenever you communicate with your consumer you need to make sure that the information you provide is consistent, accurate and trustworthy. Using consistent brand terms throughout your customer’s eCommerce journey is crucial. The terminology you use to describe your products or services should correspond to the language on your ecommerce website. Make sure you use the same brand-related terms on your mobile app and social media channels. Educate your employees. They should be aware of your brand’s vocabulary for quicker, more effective service during every customer interaction.
It’s also important to be truthful about the products and services you offer. Being honest with your customers is crucial. Otherwise, they won’t stay with you and will navigate away from your business website. You should establish precise expectations from the very beginning. You don’t want to mislead your consumers about the value you provide, about the price and quality of your products and services. Your customer should know what to expect before making a purchase.
2. Delivering a Personalized E-commerce Customer Experience
When it comes to eCommerce, there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution. Nowadays customers expect you to understand their unique tastes and needs. Personalization can make all the difference. You just need to make sure that the service you provide is unique to each of your customers throughout the whole journey. It’s all about presence so you have to be always available to your customers. Listen to what they have to say if you want to get a better understanding of what they want. That’s how you build trust and it can also help you understand your clients better.
So, if you want your business to succeed in today’s digital world, you need to keep up with your customers’ demands and respond quickly to constantly evolving consumer behavior. The reality is that today’s eCommerce consumers want a personalized experience when they are buying products and services online. They want to feel special and appreciated.
How can you do it? Well, you can start by addressing your clients by their names. Then you can make personalized offers based on previous searches, inquiries, and purchases. Using your customer’s buying history, you can make customized catalogs. You can also provide a special discount to customers who abandon their carts. You can send updates about the remainder of their orders for partially fulfilled purchases. Ask the right questions and make sure that you are available for any questions they might have.
People shop online because it is convenient. They can buy products and services 24/7 without leaving their apartment or home while watching Netflix. That’s why it makes sense to have 24/7 customer service. When you are always online, the customer experience really starts getting personal. Check the example below.
As you can see, our customers can connect with us via the 24/7 live chat option with real-time support, phone, or email. You can engage with your customers better. What’s more, you can increase the sales and conversion rate.
To meet and surpass your customers’ expectations, you should invest in personalized customer experience. Beyond that, you can differentiate your online store online and build strong, long-term relationships with your customers.
3. Showing your Competence to Clients
In any business, being able to demonstrate competence is crucial for attracting new customers and retaining the current ones. It shows your professionalism. If your customer service team knows their job well you can create long-lasting customer relationships. They will be able to answer all basic product/service-related questions. It is important that they understand the products and services you offer. Having good product knowledge in ecommerce customer service can benefit your online business. It will help you satisfy your customers’ needs. Your employees will be able to prove the benefits of your product. As a result, you can increase sales and gain customer trust. When your clients are confident that the information you provide about your products is legit they are likely to stay with you.
Whenever your customer service staff communicates with clients they should take notes. It is important to pay attention to details because we can’t seem to memorize anything. By taking notes you tell your customers that you care and you are listening. Plus, you show your professionalism.
If your customer service team understands your products and services you can easily identify what your customers’ needs are and you can exceed their expectations.
4. Providing Self Service Customer Service
You can significantly improve your customer service with a knowledge base as it is about giving your customers what they want. It is a detailed documentation that gives your customers information about your products and services. They don’t have to call your customer service representative to solve their issues. They can get instant answers to their questions in a short time. It is convenient and time-saving. If there’s a problem that keeps appearing every time you communicate with your customers it makes sense to write about it in your knowledge base.
Due to the overwhelming volume of questions, it can be difficult for your customer service team to reply to basic queries from everyone. Having a solid knowledge base gives your team an opportunity to focus on more complex inquiries. With a knowledge base, you can reduce their workload. But a self-service knowledge base only works if it provides valuable content and easy-fix solutions.
So, it really makes sense to create a page on your website that contains all the necessary information about your online business. The knowledge base can really improve your user experience.
5. Showing Empathy in E-commerce Customer Service
Empathy and customer service are the two things that work harmoniously. They have a huge impact on the overall customer experience. Serving your customers with empathy is something they always expect especially in today’s constantly changing e-commerce environment.
Given the fact that customer service is an important aspect of any business and it affects your customer's buying decisions, being empathetic is vital. When your customer contacts you to solve his or her problem the best thing you can do is to acknowledge that there is a problem. You need to put yourself in your customer’s shoes to understand the issue and then you will be able to respond to your customers’ complaints in the best way possible. Your customers must feel that you truly want to help them because customer service is all about people. That’s why you need to be empathetic, polite, and friendly. But it doesn’t mean that you have to agree with everything they say. You just need to understand where they are coming from.
Besides, empathy in customer service is mutually beneficial. It’s both great for your clients and your company. Showing empathy in customer service is good for your business for several reasons:
- Your customer service staff can do their job more efficiently
- It helps you build trust with your consumers
- It can help you resolve conflicts peacefully
- You can predict action and reaction
- You can build strong customer relationships
If you want your business to prosper and make it stand out from the competition you should focus on fantastic customer service. You cannot neglect the importance of it. Customer service is crucial to the whole customer experience. Taking care of your customers’ needs, expectations and complaints will help your e-commerce business to succeed.