As we prepare to close out 2017, we’ve been thinking a lot about what retailers can do in the new year to improve their customer experiences and gain more lifelong advocates. We believe 2018 is going to be all about building brand loyalty with engaging, seamless experiences and emotional connections. To help you get a head start, we’ve compiled 6 New Year’s resolutions that every customer-centric retailer should have on their list:
- Be clear and upfront when setting expectations: Don’t leave room for surprises when your customer’s ready to make a purchase online. Make sure your return policy is detailed and easy to find on your website, and that estimated delivery dates are clear for every shipping option. Remember: a confused customer is an unhappy customer.
- Take the confusion out of the package tracking experience: Customers check their tracking page three times per online order. Don’t send them to an off-brand carrier page that you have no control over—keep them in your branded experience and surface the information they’re looking for in a clear, straightforward manner.
- Deliver the right message at the right time: Preemptively provide the right post-purchase information to your customers. If there’s a delay or other delivery exception, let your customer know right away, through whichever channel they prefer, be it email, text, or messenger app. 98% of consumers feel better about a company that lets them know immediately when something goes wrong. This year, make sure you’re that kind of company.
- Gain more visibility into how backend operations are performing: You can’t optimize operations if you can’t take a deeper look into what’s really going on behind the scenes. Marry your order and carrier data to get a bigger, better picture of where you’re succeeding and where you need to make a few tweaks in your processes.
- Make ecommerce returns as frictionless as possible: Returns are the new normal (we know, we know—broken record…but we only keep saying it because it’s true!), and a bad experience at this touchpoint will likely lose you repeat business. Revisit your returns policy and make sure it’s easy as pie for customer to send back or exchange what they bought from you online.
- Listen to your customers: Collect customer feedback about the experiences you provide so that you can work to constantly iterate and improve. Whether through NPS, CSAT, or post-purchase experience ratings, having this first-hand information from your customers can help inform what direction you decide to take throughout 2018, and beyond.
With these resolutions in mind, you’re well on your way to enjoying more success and happy customers in 2018! For more on how you can optimize your post-purchase experience, check out our SlideShare presentation, Why 1:1 Post-purchase Communication Matters.