Improving your online customer experience is an ongoing process. Consumer trends and behaviors are inherently adaptive. Case in point: global commerce patterns were completely disrupted during the pandemic, limiting brick-and-mortar purchasing to name one massive impact.
Once you’ve started mapping out your customer journey and learning where your team may need more support to deliver incredible experiences, you’ll probably turn to Shopify apps. There are thousands of apps to help automate customer service reminders, route urgent customer phone calls, and improve customer communication, so which ones are the most effective for creating delightful customer experiences? The top Shopify stores are using tons of apps for things like email marketing, SMS, support, affiliate management, and more, like Jesse Pujji, DTC thought leader, mentions in his thread.
Source: Jesse Pujji on Twitter
The customer experience has never been more important. Now that consumers have increased options on where to shop, knowing and understanding your customer, and providing a seamless digital experience, has become the baseline for all interactions.
To make sure that the online interactions with your brand look like those from Chewy and Faber-Castell, and not the (very damaging) alternative—getting put in the hot seat for your less than positive customer experience. (Not that we want this Chewy interaction to happen to you, but you get it.)
A bad brand interaction can have a much worse negative outcome than a positive interaction has a good outcome. People are quick to write bad reviews, but need a bit of encouragement to write glowing reviews. There is a base level expectation for stellar customer service from eCommerce brands large and small, so then the standard becomes exceeding expectations. Brands have a lot to keep up with.
Customer service no longer looks like a purchase confirmation page and hidden customer support phone number that deflects more business than it brings in. Branded marketing and shipping touches, direct communications to customers, transparent practices, and personalization are all eCommerce customer service needs in 2022. Good news…there’s an app for that.
What you put into your customer experience will affect how well you can attract, engage, and retain your customers. Loyal customers don’t come out of thin air, those relationships need to be nurtured over time.
And now, with rising customer acquisition costs and eCommerce ad spend, retailers are investing more in customer experience, which is a key driver of retention. Retailer cost per click (CPC) on digital ads recently spiked by over 40%, which should encourage online shops to spend more on keeping current customers, improving the customer experience, and expanding organic brand reach. Acquiring new customers is between five and 25 times more expensive than retaining existing customers, and this is further exacerbated when the ad space is crowded.
The eCommerce customer experience is every touchpoint, interaction, feeling, and impression your customer experiences with or about your brand, from emails, to social media interactions, to customer service calls for product returns.
Having a great product isn’t enough to make customers come back in today’s market. It is much more essential to offer a valuable experience—meeting your buyer at each point throughout their customer journey.
Creating a great customer experience in eCommerce is a massive undertaking. According to Shopify, “The only constant in commerce is change,” meaning that adapting your eCommerce strategy to your customers is what leads to brands that take off. As consumer behavior changes, it is becoming more important to place your company’s values within your eCommerce experience, as buyers are more willing than ever to purchase from companies that resonate with them.
Online consumer expectations in 2022 are high, they want a personalized, seamless experience. The growth eCommerce experienced due to the pandemic isn’t likely to go anywhere. Many shoppers report that they will continue online spending across categories, with U.S. shoppers predicted to spend a record-breaking $1T online in 2022— marking a permanent increase in eCommerce market share.
What trends paint a picture for eCommerce consumer expectations in 2022? Two years into a global pandemic, supply chains look different—and so do the values of our customers.
Today’s consumers are ethics-forward. Shoppers today are more concerned about environmental issues, and well-being continues to be a focus for many consumers post-pandemic.
And just like flexible working models, flexible shopping models are taking center stage. Nielsen reports that about 75% of the top 50 physical retail brands in the U.S. now offer curbside pickup. But flexibility isn’t limited to shopping locations. eCommerce customers expect multiple payment options from online stores, including credit, debit, PayPal, Apple Pay, Venmo, and even crypto or Klarna, a buy now, pay later option.
For many eCommerce consumers, the common thread in behavior trends is a focus on convenience and customer experience. eCommerce consumers are increasingly opting for nuanced digital purchasing channels, and brands need to ensure their online customer experience is above the competition.
Here are the best apps to improve your business’s eCommerce customer experience on Shopify.
Speaking directly to your eCommerce customers using live chat is a huge advantage. Knowing what your target market looks like is one thing. Actively listening and responding to feedback is another. And it brings the bonus benefit of gathering data that you can use to get smarter and provide an even better customer experience.
Customers want a response. It’s as simple as that.
Live chat is the number one service choice for shoppers between 18 and 49. By 2022, 85% of businesses are expected to have live chat support. Here are some of the most popular live chat apps to improve your online customer experience:
If shipping is too expensive or too slow, buyers will look elsewhere. Reliable shipping and delivery services are necessary to keep up with the Amazons of the world, and these are the apps that help you do that.
In addition to helping you track shipments and keep the processes transparent to customers, many of these apps also assist with branded shipping experiences. Everything comes back to customer experience.
Top shipping notification and tracking apps for 2022 include:
Over 90% of companies have a customer loyalty program. And 57% of consumers surveyed spend more on brands they are loyal to.
These apps help to build that loyalty companies need—both saving and making you money. (Everyone knows it’s easier (and cheaper) to sell to a repeat customer than a new one!)
Slang.ai is the world’s first customizable phone agent. If your business is experiencing unanswered calls for any myriad of reasons, Slang.ai picks up those calls and improves the online and eCommerce customer experiences.
For online businesses, having phones answered also helps establish legitimacy. Slang.ai assists businesses in crafting a personal touch for their Shopify store with custom soundscapes, voice technology that actually works, and the ability to instantly route urgent service calls to your team.
Similar to live chat, email and SMS marketing open communication between your brand and your customer. It is a direct marketing channel that, used correctly, can make a huge impact on your customer’s eCommerce experience.
Consumers engage with SMS more than any other marketing channel. Studies have shown that when it comes to abandoned carts, SMS marketing is a great way to recover lost revenue.
Gorgias is an all-in-one eCommerce helpdesk for Shopify stores. With features like personalized 1:1 interactions with customers via email, social media, live chat, and phone, and automated customer service tasks, support teams can save time. Gorgias also includes additional performance dashboards and live statistics to help your teams level up by the day.
Customer experience should be the first thing eCommerce merchants think about. In an era where customer service is equally, if not more, important than the product being purchased—it’s important that your Shopify store is well-equipped with the best apps.
See how Slang.ai can help you improve your Shopify store’s customer experience and save your team hours every week.