Customer service is the new upsell

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Turn e-commerce expectations into guaranteed sales

We all know that customer satisfaction is the key to building customer loyalty and loyalty. If your customers aren’t happy with their buying experience, no matter how good your marketing is, how many leads you receive, or your sales funnel’s ability to convert new customers, they won’t come back.

And you need them to come back. In e-commerce, between 20-50% of your transactions are generated by loyal customers, and for most merchants these transactions represent the lion’s share of revenue. In fact, the Pareto Principle predicts that only 20% of a given brand’s customers will account for around 80% of its revenue. In other words, your most loyal customer segment generates the vast majority of your profits. Plus, loyal customers cost nothing to acquire and take shorter journeys to conversion, which means the margin on their purchases is higher. This is why so many retailers are investing in loyalty incentives and VIP benefits designed to increase return sales.

In ecommerce, there are many great tools available to help merchants delight their customers and gain loyal customers. Loyalty programs, referral incentives, 3D and augmented reality product views, free shipping, and even carbon-neutral orders all play a role in driving conversions and improving brand perception. . But one of the most effective and underutilized methods of fostering loyalty online is by providing great customer service.

According to HubSpot, 93% of customers are likely to repeat their purchase from companies with great customer service. It’s a lot! And modern helpdesk apps like Gorgias and Zendesk offer merchants a lot more sales-oriented features than you probably think.

In fact, while you might imagine that customer service is primarily a tool for facilitating returns and exchanges, today’s platforms excel at closing conversions, increasing AOV, and collecting data. valuable customer. Here are five essential ways a smart customer service program can help you increase your profits and loyalty online:

Guide customers at critical stages of the buying journey

According to Shopify, every time a new customer comes back to your site to make a purchase, the likelihood of them making a subsequent purchase increases. A customer who returns for the first time has a 45% chance of making a third purchase, a customer who returns twice has a 56% chance of making a fourth purchase, and so on.

Marketers have an incredible incentive to maximize the number of customers who come through the sales funnel beyond the mere prospect of an immediate sale. One effective way to do this is to figure out where a significant proportion of site users are blocked and offer a helping hand.

You can use the ‘Behavior Feed’ tab in Google Analytics (or the equivalent in your preferred reporting dashboard) to assess common buying channels in your store and isolate the stages where you see the most. attrition. From there, you can use your helper app to set up scripted prompts that drive sales at these critical times.

For example, if you find that a significant number of leads bounce once they reach your Collections page, it might not be set up for optimal navigation. A simple “Can I help you find something” prompt will engage many users who would otherwise leave without making a purchase.

Resolve complaints before they become reviews

Social proof is one of the most powerful selling tools, as buyers tend to trust neutral user opinions far more than marketing copy. For the same reason, negative reviews can kill conversions.

Your best defense against negative reviews and their erosive effects is to provide your customers with responsive and helpful customer service before they move on to the comments section. It sounds like a complex psychological business, but all you really need to do is send a consistent, appropriate message: include a comment card with your packaging that encourages unhappy customers to engage with your customer service team. friendly. Add an opening bet to the help desk icon on your homepage so that your customers will save it every time they visit your website. Include a customer service module in your campaign emails and automation programs.

By integrating your customer service program into your communications media, you will create an available private channel where you can resolve complaints and improve customer satisfaction without exposing your business to bad word-of-mouth.

Help customers find relevant products quickly

Your customers won’t buy what they can’t find and they won’t go looking for solutions they don’t know exist. A well-designed website acts as a roadmap connecting your customers to their wants, but if you have hundreds of SKUs or are selling a particularly tactile good like jewelry, some users are doomed to get lost or need more. information that you. can be part of a product description.

Setting up a customer service chat is a great way to point lost site users in the right direction and respond in real time to questions that might otherwise be obstacles in their purchase journey. High-end furniture maker Rove Concepts uses a dedicated on-site customer chat where brand representatives can share furniture diagrams, talk about fabrics, and provide cleaning information to potential customers. The website continues to resemble a showroom, as customer service responds to sales-oriented questions from self-qualified leads.

If you’re from the traditional retail world, it might seem odd to reassign the responsibilities that you associate with your sales team to customer service. But e-commerce is all about convenience and expediency, and support services provide site users with the most immediate and richest way to reach a brand representative. The more you can empower your customer service team to act as an extension of sales, the more sales they will make.

Create more upsell opportunities

Clever customization of the user experience can increase revenue by 19% and increase profits by 15%. That’s why the best ecommerce companies invest so much in technologies that create smart product recommendations and personalized landing pages.

But your customer service team can make the same recommendations as the smartest API and deliver richer insights to your customers to boot. Plus, they spend a lot of time helping hot leads. Therefore, when you allow customer service to suggest logical pairings for your products at high speed or explain how customers can save money with a simple subscription, you are actually creating a highly tactile sales channel for prospects. already in the decision phase to buy them trips.

If you’ve ever interacted with a post-purchase upsell page, you get a sense of the power of suggesting bundles, memberships, and product associations to shoppers during the decision phase. But ecommerce expert Joel York expresses this power in terms of predictable formulas, showing that increasing AOV by 15% through upselling can accelerate time to profit for young brands by almost 2 times.

Create an FAQ that generates sales

Brands spend a lot of money learning about their customers: what they like, what they don’t like, and how they prefer to shop. But with an integrated customer service solution, you can start collecting that data without spending a dime more or resorting to gray area tactics.

Many modern support services include a CRM, or customer relationship management platform, which records demographic information about customers and records all of a customer’s interactions with a brand. This is extremely useful information to have on hand when a loyal customer has a question, but it is even more valuable overall.

For example, a customer service CRM can help you highlight the most common issues your customers have with your products and user experience. Instead of continuing to spend resources responding to individual queries related to these issues, you can definitely address them in your FAQs.

Your FAQs will help more customers answer their own issue-related questions while allowing your customer service team to focus on sales and handle more nuanced inquiries. Building a solid FAQ will also act as an SEO game that will create more organic sales over time. The more customer-relevant information you include in your FAQs, the more likely it is that prospects will find your website through organic search. The more leads that land on your website through organic search, the higher your site will rank on Google. The higher your site ranks on Google, the more organic prospects will visit your website… You see where that leads, right?

Two helpdesks that we love

In my company, P3, we recommend Gorgias and Zendesk most often. Gorgias is a modern help desk solution designed to help up-sell, and their app is designed to be user-friendly for small to mid-sized merchants. Gorgias offers an intuitive CRM for agents, the ability to create automated scripts and trees, and extremely robust integration for Shopify merchants.

Zendesk is the incumbent operator that many large companies are already comfortable using. As you would expect from an incumbent, the Zendesk platform is powerful and extremely customizable, giving merchants the power to fine-tune their customer service experience no matter what ecommerce platform they are using. ‘they use. But the price reflects this added flexibility.

Ultimately, you will base your choice on the specific needs of your business. The most important thing is how to take advantage of this choice to generate profits.



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