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How can I help? About customer service in e-commerce

Customer service is one of the key aspects for e-commerce. It is supposed to compensate the biggest disadvantage of online stores – lack of possibility of physical meeting with a seller and conversation about the product and purchase. With professional customer service of the e-store, no stationary store cannot compare.

Responses are fast, factual, professional and at the same time – the culture of conversation and care about the interests of the customer – this is what people who decide to shop in e-shops want. The visit in the e-shop often causes confusion – we do not have the opportunity to see the product, we do not know if it will be suitable for us, a lot of questions arise, which we do not know who and how to ask… According to research, it is often at this point that the customer abandons his or her shopping cart in the e-shop… All the more so when he or she cannot wait another day for an answer to the question posed via e-mail or when the e-mail address to the store cannot be found on the website at all… He or she goes to a stationary store to see the product live. How to keep the customer with you and minimize the number of abandoned shopping carts?

Don’t force the search
Information about channels of contact with the e-shop should be graphically exposed on the website – the customer cannot look for it in subsequent tabs. What channels of contact should be chosen? Do not limit yourself to one – customers have different preferences regarding communication – give them as wide a spectrum as possible. An ideal situation is that the e-store customer service includes:

* a telephone helpline

* an e-mail address

* a fanpage on Facebook

* a chat conducted from the level of the e-store in real time (the solution is not for very small stores, but as the e-business expands, it is worth considering such a form of contact)

How to do it?
Regardless of the communication channel the principles are the same:

* don’t make the customer wait – they usually need an answer quickly, they don’t want to delay their purchase decision, if you make it impossible for them to make it – they won’t, but to your detriment

* be professional and helpful – the customer is looking to you for support, they are often unfamiliar with the industry they are shopping in, they want to base their decisions on professional advice; don’t sell at any price – advise against a purchase idea if it seems unprofitable for a customer, instead offer something which will be really beneficial for him/her – they will probably thank you with bigger purchases

* be cultured – regardless of the customer’s level of personal culture – you always act according to the highest standards, do not let yourself be carried away or provoked even if you hear absurd comments on the other end of the phone – customer service is your business card, and calmness and culture are able to calm down even the most heated situation

Stay ahead of the customer
Customer’s expectations after the purchase decision are predictable – he wants to know if his payment has already been registered, if the products have already been shipped, when he can expect the shipment, what is the tracking number so he can track the package himself. You have to be ahead of these questions – prepare a mailing that will give the customer the most important information about his purchase – he has to be up to date with the whole purchase process, he cannot feel confused. It will give him a sense of security and build trust to the e-shop.

Reduce the distance
Customer service is also about proper preparation of the shipment. Properly prepared packaging will of course contribute to proper recognition of your brand. How about cutting the distance between you and the customer? There are many ideas – put a note with a handwritten signature in the package, attach a free gift or a discount code for the next shopping, or a set of documents needed for a possible return – show that you are not anonymous, and the purpose of your action is to help with purchases. It is easier and faster to return to someone who is kind to us.