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The epidemic has accelerated a shift in ecommerce that continues to grow worldwide. Ecommerce sales are expected to exceed $ 1 trillion this year and reach $ 5.1 trillion worldwide by 2026. Today, customers have many online shopping options to choose from, making the customer experience a major competitive differentiator for ecommerce companies.
A positive customer experience helps build relationships with consumers, builds brand loyalty and strengthens trust, which reduces customer churn and increases revenue. According to Genesis research, 70% of consumers say a company is as good as its customer service.
Ecommerce companies that do not provide superior customer service will see customers leaving, never to return. A PwC survey found that in the United States, one in three (32%) said they would walk away from a brand of their choice after only one bad experience.
To advance in a crowded market of e-tellers competing for Wallet shares, e-commerce companies need to integrate customer-centricity into their DNA, focusing on enhancing the customer experience to create happy, satisfied, loyal customers.
Ecommerce companies wanting to optimize the customer experience should exclude potential friction points in the customer journey:
Related: Here are 12 great tips from ecommerce experts
1. Invest in a top customer experience team
Investing in staff recruitment and training a dedicated, human customer experience team is key to delivering exceptional customer experience. A PWC report notes that while human interaction is important, 82% of U.S. consumers want more of it in the future.
These dedicated experience teams play an important role in shaping the customer experience; 79% of consumers say that the experience a company provides is as important as its products or services.
Consumers today expect a great ecommerce shopping experience. This expectation is a key driver for building a customer experience team that focuses on providing a high level of service that meets and exceeds customer expectations. This TouchPoint Optimized gives customers the ability to connect with brand experts who can help them solve problems quickly, efficiently and effectively, and demonstrates a commitment to delivering a high-quality customer experience.
When the customer experience team members focus on being responsive and maintaining a positive relationship with customers, it enhances the overall customer experience, which can increase sales and make ecommerce businesses outperform their competition.
Related: 5 Secrets to Running a Successful Ecommerce Business
2. Advantages of customer service technology
Self-service features that reduce friction in the customer experience can be effectively deployed by ecommerce companies to increase customer satisfaction.
Customer service technology that provides speed and convenience enhances responsiveness and supports the customer experience team, freeing them up to assist customers with more complex issues or problems.
Automating customer service through a ‘live chat’ communication channel for 24/7 customer service and integrating a customer experience automation platform designed for frequently asked questions significantly reduces the time it takes for a customer to solve a problem. Both of these tools allow you to solve a customer’s question satisfactorily with the click of a button or a quick chat.
My company, Browse, has experienced the benefits of this technology with first hand. Recent improvements to the company’s self-service customer experience automation platform have helped increase customer satisfaction by 30% from 2020 to 2021.
Related: 5 Game-Changing Ecommerce Trends in 2022
3. Free shipping offer
Once the minimum purchase threshold is met, e-tailors can enhance the shopping experience by offering free shipping – a practice that consumers find more customer-friendly. Most US customers expect free delivery with a minimum order of $ 25- $ 50, and if free shipping is not offered they will leave their shopping cart, moving to a competitor that offers it.
Expensive delivery is one of the biggest pain points associated with online shopping. A new report from Retail Week, CX Factor: 1,000 customers who turn your brand on (and off)It was found that “the biggest turn-off for consumers when shopping online is expensive delivery, with 78% of shoppers citing it as one of their top three buggies.”
4. Provide hassle-free returns and refunds
Return and refund policy is the main factor in shaping the customer experience. Many buyers check return and refund policies before making a purchase with e-teller and do not buy from companies unless they offer a non-abrasive, worry-free return and refund. A smooth, seamless return and refund process is key to keeping buyers happy and converting their returning customers.
In a UPS survey examining the growing trends, preferences and expectations of online shoppers, 73% of consumers surveyed said the return experience influenced whether they would continue shopping with the retailer. The same study found that the main reason cited for a poor return experience was the delay in getting the money back. Furthermore, Klarner’s study found that 84% of online shoppers would turn to retailers after experiencing poor returns.
There is no doubt that frustration-free return policies are key to increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty. In fact, Browze saw its customer satisfaction score rise from 50.5% in 2019 to 80.9% in 2020 when the company introduced a new hassle-free return policy.
5. Optimized for mobile
There are more than 290 million smartphone users in the United States, and many of them are shopping on their mobile devices. According to Oberlo, about three out of every four dollars currently spent on online shopping is done through mobile devices.
These statistics make it a compelling case for e-tellers to optimize their ecommerce sites to enhance the shopping experience of consumers on mobile devices. This means that websites are easier to navigate and pages load faster on mobile devices. Google data shows that if a mobile site takes more than 3 seconds to load, 53% of website visits are abandoned.
As more and more customers shop on the small screen, it is important for ecommerce brands to provide an engaging and intuitive mobile experience.
When it comes to online shopping, consumers have many choices. Ecommerce companies that want to capture Wallet shares need to adopt customer-centricity that eliminates friction and pain points to provide a positive customer experience.