When it comes to customer service, it is like solving puzzles. Because different puzzles have their own answers, it is necessary for us to find appropriate solutions for them. Excellent customer service is one of the key contributors to the success of most enterprises, including online businesses. As the significance of customer service is obvious, it is our responsibility to constantly improve and facilitate it. Regarding this topic, Mr Vince Nguyen, CCO and co-founders of Hamsa Technologies, shared his opinion about the primary customer service problems in E-commerce and ways to solve them. Let’s find out below!
Common problems and solutions of customer service in E-commerce
1. Low response rate
Let’s imagine that tomorrow is your friend’s birthday, and you want to surprise her with your birthday gift, which is her all-time favourite clothing item – skirts. However, it is unfortunate that you are too occupied with your work. You forget to buy her birthday gift until late in the evening. Because you still want your friend to be happy, you do a quick search on Google and choose one online store that may have what you are looking for. Your product is available at a reasonable price. Yet, you are not sure whether or not the product will be delivered on time as her birthday is tomorrow. Then, you send a message to the owner of this online shop to ask about the delivery time. However, you have waited for more than an hour, and there is still no response from the shop. In that case, you must feel frustrated and you may cancel your order immediately. The frustration from customers results directly from the slow online response. According to Mr Vince Nguyen, this is one of the most common problems in E-commerce.
Regarding this dilemma, Mr Vince gave out valuable advice on how to solve this.
– Use automated replies
It is really important for customers to know whether or not their queries, complaints or feedbacks have been received by the shop owners or staffs. This really matters to customers because they will know if they are valued and their concerns are taken into serious account. Therefore, it is really useful for you to take advantage of automated replies. This tool will inform customers that their questions or feedbacks have reached the shop and they will be replied as soon as possible. Automated messages will also help to improve customer relationship and give a company some time to think of an appropriate response. Since automated emails are common among every company, coming up with something outstanding is necessary. For example, instead of using formal ways, such as “sir/madam”, you can use call them by their first names. Your messages need to be warm or sincere and less robotic.
– Direct customers to FAQs (frequently asked questions)
It is really useful when you direct customers to the FAQs category on your website. This category must include detailed answers to the questions that are concerns of most customers. By that way, customers do not even need to contact you anymore. This will save your customers lots of time and they are more likely to feel satisfied with your customer service.
– Engage real people – your employees
Always bear in mind that your customers are real people. They need real humans to contact them. If you engage your employees in the whole customer service process, it will be more effective. Customers will feel more appreciated when their problems are taken care of by real people, not some robotic, automatic machine. For this reason, as business owners, you have to equip your staff with necessary soft skills, such as communication techniques and technological knowledge.
2. Constant customer transfer
Customers are likely to lose their temper because of constant transfer between departments. It often happens in a call centre or a chat. This problem occurs mainly because people in the customer service department do not know what to do when a client asks questions. They hope that someone else will take care of it instead. Besides, the agents either do not have an understanding of other departments’ functions or clear separation of duties. According to Mr Vince Nguyen, there are several ways to combat this problem.
– Learn more about your company
Although you are working in the customer service department, it is necessary for you to gain more knowledge about what other departments are doing and their main responsibility. For example, if your product is related to software and web development, it is likely that customers will have questions about the technical aspects of your product. When you do not possess any technical skills or knowledge, referring your customers to the people who are specialized in it is very useful. You need to know well the functions of each department and who are the experts in each field.
– Positive communication
Call transfers are often unavoidable. So the important thing here is to do it right by using positive communication. For instance, you should not reply directly to customers that you can not solve this problem, and you are going to transfer them to another department. You should start by apologising that you are not clear about the queries of the customers. Then, you can tell them that there are other specialists or experts that are best-suited to address their concerns. Remember that there is a huge difference between “I am going to transfer you” and “I will let you talk to our experts”. Moreover, you should not fake professionalism and lie to your customers. If you do not know anything, be honest and use positive communication.
3. Wrong order delivery
In E-commerce, this problem occurs frequently. As a business owner, you have to pay careful attention to your customer orders and deliver the right ones for them. This is really important when it comes to customer service. Wrong order delivery will strongly affect your business reputation and lower customer loyalty. So what are the ways to solve this problem?
– Careful check before delivering
It is ideal for you to double check customer orders before shipping. If you check carefully, there is a low possibility that any wrong order delivery takes place. The customers will also know that you pay attention to their orders and put trust in your service even more. If you are too busy, you can ask your shipping team to take responsibility for that.
– Refund policy
Customers will really appreciate your effort if you make it easy for them to return the wrong products. Establishing several refund policies when you deliver the wrong products is important. In that case, providing them with a discount coupon when you deliver the correct items for customers is really useful to keep them stay longer with you. If they do not want to make order anymore, the best solution here is to apologize and return their cash back.
4. Negative user experience on E-commerce sites
Improving customer service means making it less difficult for the customer to use your shop’s website. One of the most crucial contributors to better user experience is your E-commerce site navigation. If you design complicated navigation for your platform, it is likely that customers will feel confused and leave your store quickly. The frustration will take over them before they can make any order, thereby reducing the conversion rate for your business. In order to solve this problem, Mr Vince Nguyen lists out some advice to improve the navigation for your E-commerce platform.
– Clear and concise navigation
If you do not want to make customers lose their patience, it is ideal for your website to have clear and concise navigation. Being certain that customers will get basic knowledge about the products that your store offers. By looking at your navigation menus, they can immediately know about your products, collections and campaigns. Taking advantage of simple navigation is necessary for you to improve the user experience.
Using sub-category is also very useful to keep your web navigation simple and concise. In case your company has several products and collections, you should focus on your top-level products and create sub-category. You can divide your items into different major categories and add sub-category below. This way, customers can locate their needed products quickly and they will find it time-saving. The sub-category is one of the useful ways to make the user experience better.
The importance of customer service in E-commerce
As the majority of online shoppers need assistance during their purchasing process, customer service is of great importance. Only by providing excellent customer service will your business maintain a good relationship with your clients. Due to the fact that customers often consider customer service is a test of how much business values them, they require the best service and always remember what kind of service you provided. If your service is up to their expectations, there is no reason for them to leave your brand. Otherwise, poor customer service will make the customer feel less valued and they do not have any motivation to stay with you.
Besides, it is obvious that exceptional customer service provides for your business a great number of benefits, such as generating revenues, maintaining customer loyalty and establishing a solid reputation for your brand. The better the customer service, the more successful your business will become.
Knowing the importance of customer service, Hamsa Technologies has always been making a great effort to provide our clients with the best service. With our motto “Customers come first”, during our establishment and development, we have provided customers with satisfactory products and services related to E-commerce and web development. Anytime clients have problems or questions regarding the ways to build their E-commerce websites or to optimise their business platforms, Hamsa is always ready to reply enthusiastically to them. Customer satisfaction is also a Hamsa’s pleasure.
If you are interested in gaining more insights about Hamsa’s products and services, please refer to What We Do section!