Want to Reduce Ecommerce Customer Churn? Start with Customer Service

by Business Case Studies on Tuesday 5th June, 2018

In ecommerce, a lost sale is more than lost revenue. It actually represents a missed opportunity to retain a customer over the course of their lifetime. Furthermore, customers who decide to leave your website without purchasing anything will likely go on to make that purchase from one of your competitors.

According to a report from Business Insider, “Online retail was the fourth-highest [industry] in terms of customers leaving.” And over half (54 percent) of customers stopped working with a company offering poor customer service—a higher percentage than in previous years.

So, do you want to reduce ecommerce customer churn? Start by fine-tuning your customer service offerings.

The Key to Customer Retention

Customer acquisition is exciting. But customer retention drives long-term revenue and growth. One way to impress consumers and increase the chances they’ll feel loyal to your online store is to offer human-based customer service. Why? Because online shoppers seek out the “personal touch” behind the website. Most people still want the option to interact with a living person, even in our increasingly automated world.

Imagine this scenario: Customer X has purchased Product Y from your store but has a question about tracking their package. So, they pick up the phone during business hours and get in touch with a customer service specialist. At the beginning and end of the session, the customer service representative provides their first name. This employee empathizes with the customer’s inquiry and reassures them they can get to the bottom of the issue on the call. The customer finishes the phone call feeling confident they understand the status of their package—and that they always have the option to call or email if they have any further issues.

Now, compare the aforementioned scenario to a generic experience in which a customer submits a form question and receives a form response from the company rather than a specific customer-facing employee. This is why people still gravitate toward humanized, personalized interactions in this day and age.

Be Responsive – Even Outside of Business Hours

Responsiveness is paramount in today’s retail landscape. Customers tend to appreciate the option to live chat with a customer service representative while shopping. To be sure your platform will support this, conduct a cloud ecommerce platform comparison before settling on a provider to find one capable of giving you this ability

Live chat benefits include:

  • Lower average interaction costs
  • Immediate response times
  • Reduced cart abandonment rates
  • Upsell opportunities
  • Alleviation of customer pain points

In an ideal world, you’d have a customer service team ready to respond to inquiries around the clock. Of course, the actual logistics of this would get expensive and cumbersome very quickly. So, ecommerce companies can augment their human-led customer service with artificial intelligence (AI) in the form of live chat bots.

While bots lack some of the nuance of humans, they can handle basic inquiries, provide detailed information on products and deliver helpful links for shoppers. After all, a chat bot can easily answer a shopper’s inquiry about your return policy at 2 a.m. when your human customer service specialists are out of the office. These AI tools can also act as the first line of communication with shoppers—handing off the conversation to human representatives as needed.

If you want to reduce customer churn, you need to take a good look at your customer service offerings. Prioritize responsiveness, helpfulness and personalization in every interaction for the best results.

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