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In our latest webinar, Elevating Customer Experience for Ecommerce Growth, our panelists discussed best practices for CX, including personalization, efficiency and using AI and machine learning to scale service. Julia Whatley, Strategic Partner Manager at Gorgias gave a presentation on improving first response times and was then joined by Matt Gehring (GM of Ecommerce at Everlane), Alexandria Collis (Director of Customer Experience at Princess Polly) and Noora Tirkkonen (Vice President – Customer Experience, Strategy & Distribution at Joybird) for the discussion.
Read the recap below or watch the replay here.
With more and more customers shopping through websites and social media, Gorgias knows firsthand that it’s essential for brands to have strong social media presences, not only for brand content, but also for customer service/support. Being omnichannel and being everywhere that the customer is provides a sense of open communication and utilizes all the touchpoints available to your brand.
With social media, it’s important to personalize these interactions with customers. Gorgias gave a few recommendations:
- Utilize “low hanging fruit” and get your offers out. Outside of email ad campaigns, you can engage with your customers on social and provide a promo code to move someone towards your website.
- Engage with customers before they go on your website. 50% of customers engage with 3-5 channels pre-purchase, so respond to customers asking about products (this increases your sales and ad effectiveness by an equivalent of a 5% increase in ad-spend).
- Utilize live chat or SMS, and respond quickly. Gorgias has seen a 28% conversion rate in their clients for pre-sale chats or SMS replied to in under 10 minutes.
- Personalize customer service emails. Loyal customers are 9x more likely to convert compared to a first-time shopper, so using even just a first name will help customers with questions feel valued by your brand.
Balancing Quality + Efficiency Across Platforms
To build quality and efficiency across platforms and maintain it, leverage:
- Your staffing and team—they are the foundation of a successful customer service experience
- Partnerships/relationships—work to make sure that your journey is supported how you need it to be
- Hardware+tech stack—make sure your team utilizes the best resources available
- Analytics—use feedback as the voice that drives the business
- Customer centricity—it should be a team and company value
Quality support is not easy, but your team and setting them up for success is crucial.
For brands like Joybird, where products can take 4-12 weeks to arrive, it is important to provide constant updates while the customer is waiting for their product. This not only reduces WISMO customer service emails, but also represents a more holistic approach to customer service. Pre-purchase, they also mail swatches to help customers properly understand the feel of products they’re looking for and meet in virtual chat rooms to talk to customers. This entire process is very personalized and keeps customers at the center of the shopping experience.
CX Best Practices
Be effective and efficient. If you have the opportunity to work within multiple channels, it is helpful to view all communication with a customer across them all. Additionally, automating response emails ahead of time makes it easier to embody brand voice and make sure it’s the same holistic brand message across channels. Create efficient processes so that you don’t have to rely on additional headcount. This may be through automation, 3rd party support, or self-service chat. Being proactive in getting information out to the customer before they come to you can help reduce ticket volume.
Princess Polly also shared their 7-step process to help become a “CX Master:”
- Proper staffing levels
- Necessary training and education
- Acting on customer feedback
- Making changes based on feedback
- Comprehensive metrics + KPIs
- Developing timeliness of data
- Solid tech tools
Panel Pro Tip: work with the right partners to make sure they share the same values and are offering the experience your brand wants customers to have.
Upselling Products in CX + Chat
Customer service chat can be a good place to upsell products to customers, but it has to come across in a way that is actually beneficial for the customer and not purely motivated by a bigger sale. Jorbird focuses mainly on ways to help customers with their orders, such as offering protection plans before products are delivered.
Upselling via chat can also recreate the in-person experience online, especially if your brand uses a type of virtual stylist. Not upselling pre-purchase is a missed opportunity to increase engagement and cart value.
Ensure your chat bot is indexed properly to answer the questions that consumers are actually looking for, rather than always sending them to the FAQ when they enter the chat. One way to improve chat is to look at the CSAT scores for your chat and understand when customers had a good experience with your chat bot and when they didn’t.
Understand where the best place to put your chat box is—sometimes, the home page is the right place, but other times a specific product page or information page would be a helpful place for a chat box to pop up. With that, adding someone’s face to the chat to make the experience feel more human/personalized will likely improve the customer’s experience.
When it comes to CX, customers are looking for personalized, genuine and helpful information. Use the tips from our panelists to help build out your customer service experience and cater to your customers. Stay tuned into the CommerceNext webinars as we continue to uncover best practices for your brand.
To get more insights like these, join us for our upcoming virtual events and apply to attend CommerceNext IRL today. The conference will take place on September 28-29, 2021 in NYC. Inc.com named CommerceNext one of "Top 5 ECommerce Conferences for 2019 and 2020." We hope you will join us for an upcoming event.