From brand hoardings to personalized service to the immediate gratification of physically trying on products of interest, the overall in-store shopping and customer experience is largely satisfying. However, it’s hard to translate that superior customer experience online.
Although online shopping is quick, convenient, and hassle-free, there’s an absolute need to continuously improve the overall customer experience levels. As an online retailer, you are not only in constant breakneck competition with physical storefronts but also with other online retailers and businesses.
To truly stand out and build a loyal following, it is wise to invest in an exceptional customer experience strategy. Shifting eCommerce trends and the ever-improving tech landscape can make it a tad bit challenging to keep track of what changes you need to implement in order to improve customer experience.
Don’t fret, as we bring you 5 strategic and easy to implement ways to augment the existing customer experience levels.
1. Improve your website design
Simply selling unique products won’t be enough. Your website is the first touch point for your shoppers to interact with your business. Clunky and cumbersome website design will spell disaster for your online store. Your website needs to have:
- A logical navigation framework
- A warm and welcoming design
- Smart typography coupled with high-quality images
- A simple and informative content architecture
Over and above this, you need to constantly make tweaks and improvements to the design of your website. This also means making your website compatible for all device types.
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Responsive website design is imperative for your eCommerce website to be accessible by all demographics of your target audience seamlessly across all device types. A poor mobile experience of your website will leave your shoppers frustrated and most likely lead to cart abandonment.
Your home page should be an even balance of visuals and contextual information. Keep the customer journey in mind when designing your website. This way shoppers will never get frustrated and bounce off your website.
Instead, they will stick around longer and probably make a purchase. Poor navigation, grammatical errors in your content, unappealing color pallets, inconsistency in design or brand tone, unresponsive pages, etc. will not go down well with your shoppers.
2. Provide multiple contact points and a live chat option
Customers want multiple ways to contact you. And this information should be easily available and accessible on your website. If the only way to reach you is an email address, you are bound to lose customers over time as people don’t have the patience or inclination to type out a formal long email regarding their queries.
Include a simple contact form, a Facebook messaging interface, an email address, a helpline number, a physical office address, and even live chat options.
Having a live chat option on your website is probably the closest your website can come to in terms of offering an almost real-life customer service representative. Incorporating this function means you will need to have a customer support team to handle queries.
However, you can now automate most of this process by using AI-powered chatbots. Smooth and efficient online support can go a long way in establishing you as a promising brand in the minds of your customers. Think about the amazing word of mouth you stand to enjoy!
Eshan Pancholi Although the traditional method of shopping in-store is still pretty significant, you can’t ignore the plethora of growth opportunities that online selling offers. As a retail business that intends to truly flourish and sustain in the long run, you need to embrace all the channels of selling and invest in them strategically.
3. Offer a personalized experience
With 59% of marketers experiencing staggering ROI after offering personalized suggestions, it is wise to indulge in offering a personalized touch to your customers. For instance, you can use smart AI tools to can offer product suggestions to your customers based on their previous searches and based on what they have added to their wish list.
Personalization touchpoints can be incorporated and delivered in several ways:
- A bespoke ‘Hello’ page with the name of the customer
- A ‘Wish List’ and suggestions based on it
- Recognizing the delivery location
- A list of recently viewed items
- A list of recommendations based on the items a customer has viewed
- Displaying information in customers’ native language
- Sending personalized emails on birthdays or an invite to visit a local brick and mortar store or an invitation to an exhibition or event.
4. Include product information and high-quality images
Great customer experience heavily depends on how you showcase your products. Include a descriptive and crisp product copy for every product and team it with high-quality images.
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Include useful information as to how the product works and supporting images of it in different scenarios of application. This includes info on measurements, size charts, and fit, crisp description of the item, and washing instructions.
In case you are selling a tech product or something that needs to be assembled, include a clear set of instructions or a link to an e-brochure to better explain the product and its application.
When it comes to photos, include images of the product from multiple angles, colors and even models wearing the product. This will help your customers get a better idea of the product and will increase the likelihood of a purchase.
Consider including 360-degree views along with a zoom feature. You can even opt to include a short video or GIFS. Furthermore, include product reviews from other customers. This will double up as social proof for your products and will assist your visitors to make a purchase decision based on what others’ reviews.
Eshan Pancholi Augmented Reality is not new to those who work in the technology space. In fact, AR (Augmented Reality) is almost 10 years old! However, AR has been dormant so far and has only recently come under the spotlight as a revolutionary new tech.
5. Simplify the checkout process
Your bid to offer a stellar customer experience will fall flat if you don’t offer your visitors a simple and hassle-free checkout process. Your checkout process must be optimized and intuitive so that your customers don’t get frazzled and frustrated and eventually abandon their cart.
Here are a few handy tips to simplify your check out process:
- Allow users to view, edit, and add products to the shopping cart and check out on every page. Don’t have them going back to a specific page to access their shopping cart.
- Include all forms of payment options. Offer localized payment options such as PayTM in India or Alipay in China, cash on delivery, credit card/debit card payments, etc.
- Make your final price inclusive of taxes. Avoid adding these costs at the last step as this will deter people from trusting your pricing policies.
- Offer multiple shipping options and clearly mention the additional costs and estimated time of dispatch and arrival.
- Allow shoppers to easily access discount codes.
- Display information in case of out-of-stock items and give a number of the available stock.
- Offer account sign-up plus guest checkout
- Don’t ask people to log in or sign in or fill a tedious form in order to check out.
At the end of the day, your customer is all that should matter. If you think like a customer, you’ll successfully be able to optimize your online store to offer superior customer experience. The 5 tips mentioned above will surely help you win more customers and convert existing ones into loyalists.