E-commerce customer experience is the sum of all touchpoints a customer has with your e-commerce brand from the moment they hear about your business to the point they make a sale and get a product. The culmination of all interactions makes up the customer life cycle.
You want a customer to have a glowing perception of your online business each time they interact with any products and services you put out.
Why is customer experience so crucial for e-commerce?
Well, customer or shopper experience can literally make or break an online business. The customer is king in brick-and-mortar stores and equally in e-commerce businesses. A positive customer experience is sure to bolster loyalty and encourage repeat customers. You will also get a good word out about your venture, which makes for effortless marketing.
Positive customer experience certainly gives your brand a competitive edge. With many options for online shops, customers will always fall back on the ecommerce brand that assures them of top-notch services.
In a study done by PWC, 73% of all people surveyed pointed to shopper experience as an important factor in buying decisions. 43% of them said they would pay more for greater convenience while 42% would pay more for a friendly, welcoming experience.
Ways to Enhance E-commerce Customer Experience
Now, positive customer experience is a prerequisite for business success and it is no different in the e-commerce world. With e-commerce missing that key human interaction aspect in shopping, is it possible to enhance customer experience? Absolutely!
Here are five key ways to improve E-commerce customer experience:
1. Prioritize Personalization
Personalization is essential for eCommerce customer experience. It is an excellent way to salvage the lack of human touch disadvantaging e-commerce.
Personalization in e-commerce can take many shapes. It could be using initials in emails or sending a birthday message to a customer on their birthday.
Another way to personalize your services is by leveraging geo-location technology to offer customers detailed information about the delivery options and shipping prices for their location. Monitoring the product browsing history can also help amplify personalization. You can use it to provide the most appropriate items to recommend.
It also helps to offer various language options to ensure that customers can interact with your offerings regardless of where they are.
2. Build Trust
Trust plays a significant role in determining whether a potential customer will purchase your offerings. The endless online scams make trust essential for winning the customer experience game. Customers also want assurance that what they see online is what they will hold in their hands after purchase.
Build trust by offering high-resolution and quality photos that showcase the products. Ensure that the product information and description have all the necessary details to help a potential customer understand the product. In fact, a customer should be able to decipher the colour, pattern, shape, style and product quality with a simple glance.
The closer the visual representation and description are to the product, the more trust you build with your target audience.
Try to leverage technology to go the extra mile. Make the most of Virtual Reality (VR) to enable customers to try on products virtually. VR will allow the customers to visualize how good the product is and how well it will fit in their lives.
3. Optimize your website
Your e-commerce site plays a significant role in determining people’s perceptions of your brand. Customer experience on your website can single-handedly influence their decision to associate your brand with excellent customer service or never buy from you again.
Audit your website to ensure it provides optimal customer experience. Ensure that the pages should be easy to navigate. Try to organize items by categories and make the search button easy to find. The checkout process should also be as seamless as possible. It should have various payment options, and the shopping cart should be visible on every page.
Also, be sure to optimize your website for mobile use. Mobile e-commerce sales are constantly rising. Failure to optimize for mobile could lock out people from your online store, affecting their experience with your e-commerce site.
4. Invest in your Ecommerce Website Security
Cybercrime is one of the threats and risks to ecommerce businesses. Hackers are always looking for loopholes and vulnerabilities in website security to leverage to access confidential user data. Unfortunately, potential customers are also wary of interacting with unsafe websites. According to a study done by Paysafe, many shoppers are even worried about their security when they shop online.
A substantial part of excellent customer experience is ensuring reliable cybersecurity for everyone on your platform. Ensure that you use payment gateways with enhanced security and fraud prevention measures.
You will also need to take SSL certificate to protect your site and users’ data using encryption technology. For that, you can buy wildcard SSL certificate, single domain SSL or multi domain SSL cert. That way, malicious hackers trying to intercept data cannot decipher the encrypted data. The padlock icon that browsers will display next to the address bar of your site will inspire trust in customers who are careful about keeping their sensitive information confidential.
The best thing is that the SSL certificate serve more than one purpose. It will keep interactions with your site safe while also improving your SEO. See, Google also wants the best experience for their users. They, therefore, prioritize safer websites (those with HTTPS online protocol) when determining the rankings in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
5. Provide product support
Just because customers are not walking to a physical location does not mean they should be in the dark when they have concerns. Online customer support is essential for customers visiting your online shop.
Offer multi-channel customer support through live chats, forums, product support pages, etc. Customers will want to continue patronizing your brand when you are keen on taking of them and alleviating all their concerns. You get an edge over the competition when prompt in answering customer questions about products, etc.
Round-the-clock customer support will reduce cart abandonment rate and ensure that customers feel a personalized touch when interacting with your e-commerce site.
Who better to judge the quality of customer experience for an e-commerce store than the customers themselves? The best way to ascertain if all your efforts of improving customer experience are bearing fruit is to ask the customers. Constantly seek and provide channels for feedback. Feedback may not always be positive, but it will do the best job of highlighting improvement areas. You can only offer the best customer experience if you know what customers think about and want from your brand, products and business.