Three Tips to Take Control of your Customer Service in 2021
Embrace a customer-service mindset in the new year to stand out from the competition. Learn how from the eCommerce experts at Replyco.
With only a few days left in 2020, now is the time to make a New Year’s resolution to get your customer service under control in 2021. As consumer expectations continue to rise, committing to improving the customer experience is an investment of your time and energy that will surely pay off. In fact, consumers are willing to pay 17% more on companies who provide superb customer service. Even more crucial is the fact that, in 2020, the pandemic has “accelerated years of [eCommerce] growth in just weeks,” resulting in “record online competition.”
As we look ahead, there’s never been a more important time to demonstrate to your customers that you are truly listening to their needs, while setting yourself apart from the competition. With that said, let’s jump into our top three tips for getting your customer service under control for the New Year.
Embrace a Proactive Customer Communication Strategy
Taking a proactive approach to customer service helps your business in more ways than one. Implementing a culture of customer care through pragmatic communications will help minimize the fallout from common eCommerce issues, such as shipping delays or low inventory. It can also help you improve customer retention, while providing your company with valuable customer feedback data.
Once you identify a common customer concern or anticipate a situation that is likely to result in a flood of messages in your inbox, don’t wait for those queries to start pouring in! Start a dialogue with your website visitors and current customers immediately.
For example, if you’re an eCommerce business specializing in digital home entertainment, you likely receive hundreds of messages a day about the availability of the latest Sony video game console, which has been in extremely short supply since its release. In this instance, overlay your storefront’s homepage with a message acknowledging the problem and informing web visitors as to when they can expect more consoles or how they can stay up-to-date with the situation.
Remember that getting out in front of ongoing issues is a time-tested best practice for softening the blow of delivering negative news. In the case of shipping delays, proactively reaching out to customers and letting them know what their options are expresses a commitment to customer satisfaction.
Proactive customer service can also take the form of auto-responses that keep your customers in the loop when you’re out of the office. For more on auto-responder best practices, check out our recent holiday blog.
Last but not least, another huge benefit of investing in proactive communications with your customers is the wealth of invaluable feedback they can supply you with. Customer dialogues often lead to crucial insights about your business and the user experience. Is there a product that customers wish you offered? A hiccup in the online customer journey that leads to frustration? An outgoing communication strategy helps facilitate conversations that play an indispensable role in discovering key insights to improve your business.
Implement a Live Chat Solution for Customer Service
The verdict is in — live chat is here to stay, and doesn’t appear to be going anywhere, anytime soon. The J.D. Power 2016 U.S. Chat and Email Benchmark Study revealed that over 40% of consumers prefer live chat over any other communication channel for customer service. That number has likely risen exponentially since then, with a mix of studies indicating that chat usage will increase by more than 85% over the next 12 to 18 months.
As consumer expectations continue to grow, the emphasis on faster customer support necessitates the need for a live chat solution. According to research from HubSpot, “90% of customers rate an ‘immediate response’ as important or very important when they have a customer service question.”
However, the benefits of utilizing live chat for your customer service go far beyond appeasing the ever-increasing demands for faster service. Offering Live chat has actually been shown to result in a significant boost in return on investment (ROI), with a 48% increase in revenue per chat hour and a 40% increase in conversion rate.
Whether on Shopify, WordPress or anywhere else on the web, Replyco’s Live Chat widget can be installed on any site to help you connect with visitors and potential customers in seconds.
Centralize Your Customer Communications
With multi-channel selling becoming the norm for online retailers, eCommerce sellers everywhere need to rise to the challenge of delivering stellar customer service to all of their customers, wherever they may be.
When it comes to meeting consumer expectations in 2021, replying to only some of your customers quickly won’t cut it. According to Forrester, 73% of consumers believe valuing their time is the most important aspect of customer service.
With refund requests, shipping ETA inquiries and product questions coming from eBay, Amazon, Facebook or wherever else your customers may be, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by a barrage of customer messages, especially around the holidays.
The most simple and effective way to combat message fatigue and get control of your customer communications is to implement a multi-channel customer service solution that gives you everything you need to reply to all of your customers in one organized and user-friendly inbox.
With a centralized inbox that seamlessly integrates your eCommerce customer messages and data (order numbers, tracking numbers, product ID) from wherever you sell on the web, you can effortlessly enhance productivity and customer service response rates. Learn more about how Replyco can help you level-up your customer service in 2021 here.