Building your digital commerce strategy to satisfy

Ecommerce
Integrations
CMS

Priority #1: Customer Satisfaction

When it comes to building your digital commerce strategy to satisfy, there’s only one way to stay competitive: customer satisfaction. This should be the #1 priority for you right now. While it seems obvious, there’s still an alarming percentage of customers who are repeatedly dissatisfied with their online shopping experiences.

  • Delivery time. From the moment your customer purchases their product, you need to ensure that it arrives on time. Even if this means creating an artificial time buffer. You need to make sure that your customer’s expectation is met. Whatever delivery time you have guaranteed, that is the time you need to deliver. Studies show that over 15% of customers will stop shopping with a certain retailer if an order is late. This percentage increases to over 50% if it happens a subsequent time.
  • Order tracking and management. The more visibility the customer has over their purchase the better. After purchasing, they should have a strong idea of when their product will arrive. On your side of things, you should also have a robust order management system to make sure you have everything in stock and ready to go for future orders.
  • Shipping pricing. You need to make sure your shipping costs seem fair to the customer. Consider listing all of your shipping prices on the same page as the original price, or consider adding them together. The experience of having one price in your mind, going to checkout, and realizing that that price has increased significantly is very discouraging. It makes your customers feel deceived. You certainly don’t want this to be the reason they don't shop with you again.

Personalization and flexibility

A great way to ensure customer satisfaction is to focus your digital commerce strategy around the concepts of personalization and flexibility. At this point in the industry, most large retailers have superb digital commerce experiences. This means that transforming your online shopping experience to optimize customer personalization is key to getting ahead.

Personalization

There are a lot of things you can do to improve the personalization of your site, as well as the flexibility it offers your customers. First off, you should make sure that your customers are able to find products as quickly as possible. There is a small window of time between your customers discovering your site and leaving due to frustration. Ideally, your customer should be able to use your site’s interface to quickly sort through potentially thousands of different products. The less frustration they have, the more time they will spend on your site sifting through potential purchases.

More importantly, you should use an e-commerce system that can responsibly track customer information while they shop. From the moment a customer enters the store, your e-commerce system should be able to record 1) what they’re looking at, 2) how long they’ve spent looking at it, and 3) whether or not that item was placed in the shopping cart.

Better yet, they’re able to use machine learning to market-specific content offerings to that customer in the future. The interface should be able to remember customer information and market content offers accordingly. If a customer finds what they’re looking for, but isn’t quite sold at that moment, then your site would be able to use their information to follow-up with them on their potential interests.

Flexibility

Speaking more to the flexibility side, customers should have as much flexibility and freedom as possible when engaging with your e-commerce site. A fantastic way to do this is to offer them the ability to have their product shipped or picked-up at their convenience. The post-purchase process is just as important as the initial product evaluation, as it largely affects the customer’s likelihood to return and buy again. After purchasing, the customer should be able to choose between Buy-Online-Pickup-In-Store (BOPIS), free or discounted shipping, and great return accommodation. Without having all three factors, you are doing yourself a disservice when it comes to remaining competitive.

The goal with all of this is to turn these individuals into returning customers. There’s too much online retail competition these days to lose out on customers via your outdated online experience.

Customer-centric data storage

Another crucial step for building your digital commerce strategy to satisfy is to make sure your customers’ data is stored and completely protected. This is a no brainer, but you’d be surprised how many companies don’t have data-storage methods that are completely full proof. Right now, the preferred method of reliable data security for retailers is changing. While it’s still relatively common to store your consumer data in-house, it’s becoming more and more dangerous.

As much as it sounds like the movies, hackers and DDoS attacks are still a thing. Don’t take the risk. Look into hiring an outside company that specializes in data security and management. Cloud-based data hosting is a great way to store data because you have an entire company backing you up. They not only specialize in this, but they also have streamlined strategies for recovering data if something were to happen. The last thing you want is your customers’ data to be lost or jeopardized.

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