This guide is a part of the below ultimate guide:
10 Best E-commerce Software Solutions — The Ultimate Guide to Growing Your Online Store
Do you remember the last time you visited a retail store down the block? What’s the first thing that happens there?
If you don’t remember, it’d go something like this: the shopkeeper greets you and asks you what you need. After you tell them your requirement, they direct you to the aisle or part of the store where you could get that item. You pick it up, pay the shopkeeper, collect the receipt & your items, and get on with your day.
Something similar happens when you visit an ecommerce store. This entire process can be termed as the buyer’s journey. Customer experience is simply how the brand communicates with you throughout the process. It’s how you make them ‘feel’ every step of the way.
If you want to read a more formal & concise definition, here’s how Gartner defines customer experience management as “the practice of designing and reacting to customer interactions to meet or exceed their expectations, leading to greater customer satisfaction, loyalty, and advocacy.”
Every interaction matters when you’re creating a great experience - from the emails you send them periodically to how you respond to them on social media to how customers perceive your store.
Customer experience is all about how you treat your customers. If they like it, they are likely to buy from you regularly. They also expect businesses to correctly understand their needs. But there are several other positive impacts of a great customer experience. Let’s take a look at them.
Imagine the brand of shampoo you use to wash your hair. Would you suddenly switch to a new one? Probably not. It’s because you like the product and the brand itself. And you’re not alone. 36.5% of shoppers said they will spend more on products if they’re loyal to a brand, even if they can find cheaper options elsewhere.
Brand loyalty translates to an increase in customer retention. If they only buy from your brand, the CLTV (aka customer lifetime value) increases manifold. In fact, A 5% increase in customer retention correlates with at least a 25% increase in profit. If you’re delivering an out-of-the-box customer experience, chances are that you’ll see its ROI sooner than later.
First off, customer lifetime value means the total revenue you generate from a single customer in their lifetime of buying products from your store. CLTV has a direct correlation to your store’s revenue.
If your store offers an amazing customer experience, the chances of getting repeat customers to increase dramatically. Repeat customers are generally loyal customers who purchase often. In fact, loyal customers spend 67% more, on average, than new customers.
Never underestimate the power of referrals. If you satisfy your customers today with a brilliant experience, you get to reap the rewards forever. Great customer experience generates word of mouth, i.e. people talk about your products and your store to their friends and family.
And that’s already verified. In fact, 81% of customers trust recommendations from family and friends over those from companies. Couldn’t be better now, could it?
Now that you’re sold (or I certainly hope so) on why you should care about your online retail shop’s customer experience, let’s look at some simple tips that can help you to improve it without too much effort.
Customers want an easy-to-navigate website where they can browse, find, and buy the products they need without any friction. The products must be arranged according to categories, a good search feature to quickly find the relevant product, and a seamless checkout process that doesn’t take them for a ride.
To enable this, you can use the most commonly used ecommerce platform, Shopify. Shopify comes with hundreds of themes and thousands of apps to customize your store the way you want it. Its store builder feature lets your setup a store & make it live in just a few minutes.
Since searching the store to find the right products is a big part of customer experience, you should also install Smart Search & Instant Search, a Shopify app that adds advanced search functionality to your store.
Let’s be honest. We all want to be treated uniquely and rightly so; we are all unique anyway. This is more than just putting the customer’s first name in the email. Everything from the content served on the website to the ads should be personalized.
For example, you can personalize a customer’s product recommendation based on the last page they visited in your store. When they return, you’d be serving them a similar (or the same) product they are probably looking to buy. If you’re using Shopify, you can use Wiser, a product recommendations app. It helps to personalize recommendations thereby increasing the chances of a purchase.
Your online customers are everywhere. They’re hopping from one social media platform to another every minute. And if just by coincidence they come across your brand and ask a question or put in a complaint, you should be ready for it. By providing omnichannel customer support, you delight your customers and thus enhance their overall customer experience.
You can seamlessly achieve this with DelightChat, an ecommerce customer service tool built to provide an omnichannel customer experience from a single screen. Reply to your customers across different channels ranging from email to Facebook to Instagram and a lot more. It’s super easy to use and you can manage it all without hopping between tabs.
An awesome product page is key to ensure guaranteed sales. A compelling product page comes with clear product images, an enthralling description, and seamless navigation. It should also clearly state the pricing, delivery time, and other associated details needed to make a purchase decision.
To build a stellar product page, you can check out Shogun. It’s a drag and drop page builder that helps you create conversion-optimized pages for your store. To take it a step further, you can add customer reviews from those who loved the product.
If you’re using Shopify, you can try Loox, the #1 reviews app for your Shopify ecommerce store. This tool helps you show social proof that invokes a sense of trust. This helps the customer to make an informed decision before buying your product. Can you guess what we are doing here? That’s right, we’re enhancing the customer experience.
Is your store optimized for mobile devices? It better be. By 2021, mobile ecommerce sales are expected to account for 54% of total ecommerce sales. Adults spend an average of 3 hours on mobile every day. If they happen to come across your site and like something, they’d want to buy immediately.
If your store’s not optimized for mobile, chances are that you are losing revenue by the minute. So, make sure that your site loads under 3 seconds, images are optimized for mobile viewing, product information isn’t bursting into pixels and all the store’s functionalities are working in order.
Ecommerce is a cutthroat industry. Customers are no longer satisfied with an awesome product. They want more from your store. They want to feel special and it’s your job to ensure that. So, if your product is already great & customers love it (which is the first step), you should start investing in customer experience.
Digital Marketing Freelancer at SoftwareSupport
Customer Acquisition at SoftwareSupport