Customer experience refers to how a company communicates with its customers at each stage of the purchasing process. As the eCommerce space gets brutally competitive, retailers must find new ways to entice customers to shop with them regularly. Improving it can increase conversion rates.
In this article, I will share how to improve your eCommerce customer experience.
What Is An eCommerce Customer Experience?
Ecommerce is booming, and the industry depends on the experience of the customer. If the customer experience is top-notch and the customers are satisfied, the business is bound for imminent success.
Ecommerce customer experience is your customers’ perceptions at every touchpoint between them and your brand. How they feel towards your brand affects their loyalty and behavior.
If customers like your eCommerce, they will continue to buy from you and most probably recommend you to their friends/family.
No customer wants to buy from a brand that mistreats, undervalues or doesn’t engage with them.
PwC, in one of their researches around buyer intent, showed that 73% of buyers consider a good experience necessary in their purchasing decisions.
Therefore, providing an excellent eCommerce customer experience is not only helpful for business, but it has become a necessity. US eCommerce sales are projected to cross $1 trillion for the first time in 2022.
The upward trend of eCommerce acceptance and more importantly, that the demand for enhanced experience is the same in the rest of the world.
Why Does eCommerce Customer Experience Matter?
The key to an excellent eCommerce customer experience is to retain your existing customers while acquiring more simultaneously. A successful eCommerce company focuses on happy customers, and these happy customers turn into loyal and satisfied customers, becoming promoters for your brand.
Additionally, acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing customer. Statistically, increasing customer retention by 5% can increase profits from 25%-95%. So, instead of getting focused on getting new customers, if focused on the customer engagement, you can have a large pool of satisfied customers willing to get you referrals and higher profitability.
A study by CFI Group showed that after having a bad or good experience, 36% of the customers tell their friends/family about their experience with the eCommerce brand.
So, by having one happy customer, you get an additional brand ambassador for your brand.
The same logic works for an unhappy customer. But only a few of them share their bad experiences with the company. The majority of customers stop using your services after a bad experience.
It is one more reason your eCommerce customer experience should be spot on. With an average or bad experience, you are at the risk of losing customers and your brand image.
With many eCommerce brands emerging, the best way to stand out is by having a well-designed eCommerce customer experience.
The customer experience is not just about the short-term profitability or cash flow but it defines your brand identity, culture, and overall perception for your customers. Creating such a strong foundation can withstand unpredictable events and helps you stay ahead, especially when the times are tough as we witnessed in the recent year!
Million Dollar Question: How to Improve Your eCommerce Customer Experience?
Okay, so there is no doubt that improving your eCommerce customer experience is vital to the success of your business.
And there are several ways to improve the experience of your customers. Check out them:
1. Use Customer Satisfaction Surveys
Knowing and understanding your customers’ sentiment is crucial for improving your customer satisfaction.
Listening to what your customers think and what they feel about your eCommerce website or app is ideal for making the improvements that actually matter to your customers.
eCommerce customer experience for every company is different. Trying to know what customers want when they purchase your brand can be just an assumption if you try to do it just through analytics.
Customer satisfaction surveys can help you avoid chasing things that seem like improvements but don’t really matter to customers as much. So, while you are playing around with cookies and incorporating hundreds of events on your app, the best way to understand the requirement(s) is to ask customers directly.
The survey can include a simple question: “How would you rate your overall satisfaction with our product?”
And you could ask them about the satisfaction level on different touchpoints like the product page, chat, shopping cart, payment page, and much more. With just the right automation and workflows in place, CSAT surveys can help you crack a code that can turn the tides in your favor.
2. Leverage Social Media
Surveys are one of the best ways to measure what customers think about your brand, but they are not the only way. And neither should you be limited to them.
Leveraging social media allows you to know better about customer feedback and directly engage with customers.
Customers speak their hearts out on social media by leaving comments on your products, services, and experiences. Responding to those comments within time is vital to let your customers know you listen.
Here is a prime example of how brands responding helps a lot in building customer relations. JetBlue Airways responded within 6 minutes of the customer’s tweet.
You can analyze your customers’ comments and get to know what you can improve in your whole eCommerce service.
For example, if you see an increase in comments about the laggy checkout process, you get to know there is a problem and fix it quickly. Using social media can allow you to offer support and thank them for their feedback on the issue.
3. Deliver an Omnichannel Customer experience
Your customers are present across multiple channels on the internet. Therefore, you should be as well.
Delivering the omnichannel experience is the best way to do it. Omnichannel marketing can improve conversions. Just be sure that all the necessary contact details like email addresses and contact details are visible on your website.
Checkout how Starbucks nailed it:
This is a Starbucks rewards app that is one of the top omnichannel experiences present out there.
You get a free reward card that you can use whenever you make a purchase. But Starbucks has made it possible to check and reload your card via phone, website, or store. Any change in your card gets updated across all channels in real-time. Starbucks has improved customers’ mobile experience & it will go in a long way to keep customers satisfied.
You can also use live chat and widgets on your website to help you communicate with customers in real-time. If you want, you can go a step further and leverage chatbots. They will be available round-the-clock and help with the automated responses.
4. Reward Your Customers
According to research by Harvard Business Review, increasing customer retention rate by 5% increases profits by 25%. Yes, you read it right!! By an astounding 25%.
You can get the idea of customer retention and therefore plan to provide a seamless customer experience to your existing customers. Here are some ideas to captivate your eCommerce customers and improve customer satisfaction:
- Loyalty points after a customer make a purchase. It should get redeemed later.
- Thank you for emails to customers after shopping. If possible, a handwritten thank you gift works wonders.
- Start a referral program allowing you to target existing and new customers.
- Send gifts to your most loyal customers. It can include mugs, t-shirts, or gift cards.
5. Know Your Customers Journey
The best way to optimize the eCommerce customer experience is to understand your customer satisfaction journey. It should cover the customer’s path to purchase and beyond.
Think about the customer’s lifecycle:
- What do they require at different stages of the journey (and the micro-moments in these stages)?
- How can you best deliver what they need at various stages of their journey?
- How to provide more value to these moments to get further engagement?
- What will their path be like after they get what they need?
Every organization’s product features and pricing have been saturated by fierce competition. Customers are no longer satisfied solely by a high-quality product offering. To stay ahead of the pack, you’ll need a one-of-a-kind offering that sets you apart from the competition. Providing a fantastic customer experience through your eCommerce store and other channels is a surefire way to do so.
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