What is the first thing that happens when you walk into a department store? You're greeted by friendly (sometimes overly friendly) salespeople who are happy to accommodate you. If this is carried out successfully it can make a huge difference in the customer's shopping experience. And as we know, when our customers have a happy and pleasant shopping experience they're a.) Likely to buy more, b.) Likely to shop with you again, and c.) Likely to tell all of their friends to shop there as well.
How can you translate this friendly and inviting attitude from the store front onto your e-commerce site? There's a few things you can do to give your customers what they really want while making them feel welcomed and like they're getting the same level of customer service as they do at the mall. Making your e-commerce site a warm and inviting haven online will not only increase your consumer's engagement on your site, but definitely increase your conversions too.
Welcome [insert name here]
We're all individuals. We all have our own likes, dislikes, personalities, fetishes, and fears. It's about time we begin treating our customers as the unique individuals they are. Experiences are more heartfelt when they're personalized and we feel like the store or the website really 'gets us'. You're essentially forming personal relationships with your customers through your e-commerce site. You want these relationships to be genuine and personal to retain your customers.
Treat each customer differently based on their own unique shopping habits by using a tool like Commerce Sciences. Commerce Sciences uses behavioral targeting to ensure that your price sensitive shoppers, and your 'heavy spenders' receive relevant and personalized experiences to motivate them best or alleviate their chief concerns.
For instance, if you have a new user coming to your site for the first time, offer them a coupon or a discount to make them feel special. Coupons and special offers make your first time users less hesitant to buy. You can also customize your website based on the location of the shopper. Using dynamic text insertion in the personal message you can hit their sweet spot with something from home. If the user is from New York City, you can offer them an I LOVE NY- get 10% off today, promotion. By tuning into individual's specific interests or fears when it comes to their online buying process you can eliminate any of the stumbling blocks hindering your consumers from purchasing on your site.
You would never buy something online without consulting your friends or family first, right? 88% of shoppers consult reviews first, in fact, if the review or recommendation comes from a peer or a person you know and trust it's the best form of advertisement for your business. Getting your consumers talking and expressing their feelings and experiences with your brand is a priceless way to retain and make your current users into even bigger fans, and spread by word of mouth to new users.
Build a community online for your customers to come together and discuss products they loved, share advice, and ask opinions. Opinion Lab will turn a column of your site into a scrolling list of real time feedback from all of your users. Their product feedback solution provides your customers with real time feedback of other customers using the product at the moment. While browsing your ecommerce site customers will be able to access a direct channel of ongoing communication about your products.
You can also express yourself, the brand, through your website. Everything from the typography you choose, the colors employed, and the visuals selected help to portray the personality of your brand. Express this personality to your audience and it will make them feel like they know you better. ITLY employs bright colors and a fun very chic and stylish interface to give the users a feeling of what their brand delivers. If your platform has a personality that your audience would want to be friends with, just like a friend you'll see your users coming back frequently to 'hang out' on your site.
What do those stores in the mall that are so inviting have that you don't? Live customer service, but what if you could have that on your site as well. Live Chat is growing in popularity for e-commerce sites and customers automatically feel more at ease when they see the symbol knowing if they have any issues they'll be able to resolve them easily. A huge reason why your bounce rate isn't decreasing and people are turning away from your site is because they get frustrated and don't have the real-time help they need. 44% of online consumers say that having questions answered by a live person while in the middle of an online purchase is one of the most important features a Web site can offer.
Zopim is a new tool on the market, it's really easy to setup and use and you can customize it to fit your site the way you want. Instead of becoming frustrated and getting fed up with your site users will be greeted with friendly customer service reps to help them through their issues. Zopim and other customer service apps make it so your customers never leave your website with a bad taste in their mouth. Every time their reminded not by the frustrating experience but instead by the warmth and invitingness of the customer reps who were readily available to help.
Shopnfly, for instance, knows their target audience is travelers that don't have a lot of time to deal with long annoying phone calls to get the answers to their questions. For this reason, they've added a LiveChat on their e-commerce site clearing the air and making it easier for their fast paced customers to make it through the conversion funnel with no obstructions. There's nothing worse than being put on hold and having to wait on hold to speak with customer support, having them accessible on your site will leave the consumer with much better vibes.
Everyone is going to enjoy themselves more and find themselves coming back for more if you welcome them into an inviting e-commerce site. We would rather buy from people who are inviting and people we value as friends. Of course, you'll see many more conversions from your more inviting e-commerce site but even more than that, you'll see far more engagement on your site and more returning users.