Friday 22 November, 2013

Ecommerce After-Sales Service Basics

There’s a huge difference between shopping in a retail store and shopping online. When you buy something in a retail store, you take it home and start enjoying it immediately. You get that gratification right away. When you buy online, you have to wait for the goods to arrive. This time lag puts distance between you and the company you purchased from.

For ecommerce stores to build a good relationship with their customers, they need to keep in touch during this crucial post-sale time before the product arrives. This is a golden opportunity for you to follow-up and show your customers that you care about them and go the extra mile for them.

Say Thank You

As soon as someone buys from you, there are three things you need to communicate to them immediately. The first is a confirmation of the item they purchased. The second is an invoice that shows the details of the purchase.

Most companies get these first two down, but they totally miss out on the third – a personalized note saying ‘thank you.’ Saying thanks generates good will and turns this from a one-time purchase to potentially a lifelong customer. Your ‘thank you’ gives them a warm, fuzzy feeling, which is especially necessary in the cold digital world of online shopping.

Shipping Info

The ultimate ecommerce store Amazon helps its customers when they’re waiting for their items to arrive by giving them a way to track their purchases. If you sell physical items that need to be shipping, providing your customers with shipping information is a great way to build confidence. They know they can check up on their item at any time. The trust you build doing this will ensure future purchases.

A simple notification that the item has been shipped is also a great way to build customer trust and stay on their radar.

Responsive Customer Service

Many ecommerce stores fail miserably at after-sales customer service. They care deeply about the customer until they make the purchase. After that, the individual customer becomes low priority.

If your ecommerce store offers excellent customer service after the sale, this will put you one step above other ecommerce stores. Rather than considering it an after-sale concern, think of it as pre-next-sale. If there is a problem with a customer’s order, make it the first priority and make sure they leave the interaction happy.

Rewards for Loyalty

Most people prefer finding one ecommerce store they like and making all of their purchases there. You can help to make this happen by rewarding your customers for their loyalty. Create a loyalty program that gives customers good incentives to buy from you again rather than going somewhere else, and they will buy from you again.

Seek Feedback

Another good thing to do after a purchase is to seek customer feedback. This feedback is vital for you because it shows how your company is doing and whether or not it’s living up to its promise. It also helps to engage your customers by giving them a voice by asking for their opinion.

Bob Steele

Bob Steele is an entrepreneur, software developer, marketer, and author living in the Denver metropolitan area. He’s an avid outdoorsman who loves skiing, hiking, fishing, boating, and just plain having fun. His interests include games, space, technology, physics, cooking (well eating actually), economics, business, internationalism, and team sports. With over thirty years of professional consulting experience, Bob has been exposed to many diverse business models and has gained a sensible approach to life. Bob’s company, WaveCentric is focused on commerce, marketing, and entertainment related products.

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