General Ecommerce Advice
You don’t need to be told that your customers are the life and the soul of your business. Without them all you would have is a website and some products that you can’t shift. Keeping your customers happy is vital to the success of your business. Implementing thorough and thoughtful customer service procedures throughout your business should mean you won’t ever let your customers down in an irreparable way.
Customer service options
There are many ways that you can make yourself available to your customers. Our recommendation would be to offer all of these options, but, of course, this isn’t always possible, especially if you’re a smaller company, so here are the benefits of each to help you decide which to utilise:
Social media service
Your presence on social media is vital to your company’s success, and not just because it makes you more visible. It also gives your customers multiple potential ways of contacting you as no one uses just one social media platform these days. A lot of people, however, have their preferred option where they would hope to be able to find you to contact you with their questions/complaints. So, to make sure you aren’t leaving anybody out, have a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even Snapchat. Keep up with the times and create accounts on any new platform that could become something huge.
You can’t go wrong with such a timeless classic as email. Have an email address specifically for your website (and if you are a larger company have one specifically for customers to contact you about issues and questions). Many customers who don’t have time sensitive needs will take to emailing you as it won’t take them much time to accomplish, and they can wait a day or two for you to get back to them. Customers will also like this route as it leaves a paper trail for them to be able to refer back to if they need to.
I’m sure in your own life there have been many times where you picked up the phone to call customer service because it’s just quicker than waiting for someone to respond to an email. Offering a consistently monitored phone number for your customers to be able to reach you on will be useful to a large portion of your customers. By having the right, well-trained people answering your phones you will be able to offer a human connection to your customers who might be looking for someone to empathise with the situation they are calling you about. It’s much easier to ignite a personal relationship with a customer when they can hear your voice or the voice of your company.
Offering a live chat option to your customers is ideal, especially if you sell more complicated products or are a larger company. Customers like to use live chat so they can have their questions answered quickly while also being able to accomplish other things at the same time. Live chat can be great for you as well, as your employees will be able to respond to multiple chats at once instead of just responding to one phone call at a time. Placing a live chat option on your ShopWired account is really easy too!
Customer service strategy
Giving your customers ample ways to get a hold of you is just part of the battle when it comes to giving truly exceptional customer service. How you handle their requests/questions/complaints is where you truly have the chance to let your company shine.
Never leave your customers hanging. Even if you can’t specifically address your customer’s issue or question straight away, tell them that you are working on finding the answers for them, and that you’ll get back to them within a certain time frame. In the age of instant gratification people don’t like to be ignored for too long. Not having a satisfactory response time could hurt your bottom line in the end as an angry customer is not likely to want to buy from you again, might tell everyone they know to avoid you and could even leave you a bad review somewhere for the rest of the world to see.
Your response tactics will depend on what the customer is asking of you. If they have a question for you, try to answer in the most straightforward, least confusing way possible. If it’s a complaint they want to make, then having procedures in place will ensure that any complaints are dealt with in a uniform way. Solutions that won’t hurt your bottom line (too much anyway), but will satisfy the customer are what you are aiming for here. It’s important that you respond to your customers by trying to make them happy in any reasonable way possible.