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Ecommerce Customer Service Strategy for Holiday Season Rush (Checklist)

And it is official… the holiday shopping season is here. While you’ve likely to plan specials you’d like to run/offer — it’s time to begin implementing ecommerce customer service strategy in earnest. This is one of the busiest times for many businesses especially the Ecommerce sector. The online orders increase and so does the need for customer support. You need to ensure your first-time buyers, your regular customers, and all vendors need to have a seamless experience. 

The year 2020 has been a crazy rollercoaster. There were and still are so many uncertainties surfacing around. This pandemic sure changed a lot of things and the ecommerce industry is no exception too. Some of the common trends that have emerged or are expected to affect online shopping this season are:

–               Travel restrictions leading to online work meetings.

–               Increased online shopping due to seasonal sales and discounts.

–               Customers are redirected to e-commerce websites more often.

All these factors propel more customer queries and requests.

With the advancement and automation in help desk software, hopefully, the customer support teams will be in a better position to manage the holiday rush. 

Prepare your customer support for the holiday rush

COVID-19 has turned the shopping experience on its head quite literally. We know that the future has been pulled forward now and every business is an online business. A thoughtful approach to ecommerce customer support service can save time and money and maximize returns.

Major challenges a startup ecommerce store owners face:

–               Shipping delays

–               Handling mishaps

–               Mismatched expectations. 

There are many ways for a customer’s purchase to go awry and this leads to customer support escalations. 

With a new marketing and management tools and software, you can work on a winning ecommerce customer support strategy. 

Grow ecommerce sales with customer experience during Holidays

1.     Map the customer journey by understanding customers’ needs and expectations. 

2.     Find touchpoints and deliver remarkable customer experience. 

3.     Move customers through the life cycle funnel (sales funnel, we say) with relevant content and strategy. 

Let’s understand each points in brief: 

The customer journey map is a assuming how your customer will act and react throughout their purchase journey. You can understand the path customers go through and find touchpoints that allow them to improve customer experience by either providing necessary information or by offering a call-to-action. 

It is extremely essential to understand your customer behavior when it comes to ecommerce holiday. To start with, these are some simple questions you need to find answers yourself:

1.     Where do your customers come from (demographic profile)?

2.     What mediums and channels are the most effective (source of traffic)?

3.     How do customers browse your store? What paths do they take (navigation)?

4.     How much time do they spend on each page?

5.     When do they start adding products to shopping carts?

6.     How do they contact you when they need assistance or help (customer support is crucial)?

7.     What feedback do you get on returned orders? 

8.     What content do customers engage with the most?

Holiday rush hours asks you to prepare in advance. You need to analyze everything you know about your customers and find any repetitive patterns and behaviors. These will form the basis for excellent ecommerce support strategy during those heavy rush sales hours. 

How to deliver superb ecommerce customer service strategy

In this blog post, we will quickly help you deliver an awesome ecommerce support strategy at every stage of the customer journey. 

Get organized

Strategy starts by empowering your internal team. Make sure your front-end customer support team knows essential information about the products/services you’re offering during Holiday rush times. It also includes details of your marketing strategy, promotions, anticipated demand and shipping times, and who’s going to be on livechat. 

A clear and organized record of this information will help you and others who work with you—seasonal employees or otherwise—stay up to date. That means you’ll have a better idea of how to answer customer questions on promotions, shipping times, etc. It also will help you trace a message’s root cause more easily, e.g., the exact offer or promotion that prompted a customer to email you.

Identify touchpoints and give proactive support 

Proactive customer service, or we can put it as ‘reaching out to customers before issues arises’ can preempt most common issues and eliminate the need for customers to contact you at all anxiously. Proactive support is powerful because it reduces the number of simple, low-value questions you’ll receive—freeing up your time to help everyone else. Build a strong FAQ section to redirect your customers when approached. 

Nothing really frustrates customers more than when they have an issue and aren’t able to contact you. Think about your main support channels— will you offer a telephonic support, live chat, email, messaging, texting, or social media direct messaging? All of the above? It is highly recommendable to setup a help desk software and a ticketing system to keep track of the support requests. Add your helpdesk portal information in the footer of every message you put out and across all of your social channels. On your website, be sure to include a Contact Us page.

Use automation tools of helpdesk software

Use automation tools like auto-assigning support tickets to your designated customer support agent. This will make your customers feel attended even during the busiest Holiday season sales. Contact customers and get a feedback or ask them whether their issue is resolved and whether it is okay to close the support ticket – you’ll save them the time and hassle and win a loyal customer. 

You can send customers an automated email after they’ve abandoned their cart or after they’ve made a purchase. Desky offers this unique feature of email templates where in you can send emails to acknowledge your customers. 

Update your helpdesk knowledge-base for holiday season

Make sure all of your knowledge-base articles are accurate and lets customers find the help they need without reaching out to you. Additionally, it also eliminates that element of frustration when customers can’t find updated information on your articles/resources.

FAQ page: Ensure that FAQs are questions that are mostly common and where the same answer applies to most of your customers—situations where a human customer support team agent would not be adding much additional value. Desky offers a smarter way with ‘canned responses’ features where you can save repetitive replies for your customers.

Help content: Add your support portal/ help center links on every touch points so that your customers can find ease in reaching out to you. Mention information on shipping times, costs, return policy, etc. 

Conclusion: 

Ecommerce sellers need to be ready to anticipate, and create strategies that will convince customers in this unpredictable time. With a thoughtful ecommerce customer service strategy well drafted, you can go that extra mile to show customers you appreciate them. This year’s holiday season brings a much-needed sense of ‘normal’. So, it is time to make a better move and build your customer support 

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