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July 6, 2021 by Ben Chafetz

What eCommerce Shoppers Really Want From Customer Service

You pride yourself on providing great customer service.

Ok, maybe not Zappos level customer service but you answer when customers call and listen to what they say and really try to help.

But is that enough?

Is that what your customers want?

In this post, we define what eCommerce customers actually want from your customer service team. To explain this and ensure you’re on the same page as your customers, we’ll be taking a look at a wide variety of the latest 2021 customer service statistics from a variety of different sources. Let’s get into it.

→ Related: How To Implement A Customer Service Strategy & Why You Should 

An Understanding of their Needs and Frustrations

First and foremost, customers want to be heard and understood. They want customer service representatives to be able to understand them, their needs, and their frustrations, and offer solutions that will correct the issue.

3/4 of customers expect your team to be able to understand their needs and expectations. And if your team can’t deliver on this front, you’re putting yourself at a disadvantage from the very start of the customer service journey.

Fast Response Times

This isn’t exactly a shocker. 90% of customers say that an “immediate” response is “essential” or “very important” when they have a customer service question. And about 60% of these customers define “immediate” as 10 minutes or less. 

The faster your response times, the better. Responding quickly makes customers feel valued, heard, and understood. Responding slowly – or not at all – makes them feel ignored, mistreated, and frustrated.

Multiple Contact Options, Including Social Media

Customers expect to have lots of ways to get in touch with your team, including, but not limited to phone calls, website contact forms, email, social media, and live chat. The more contact options you offer, the more quickly customers can contact you using their preferred contact method. 

Different customers have different needs, too. Older adults tend to use phone or email support. Millennials tend to prefer live chat and social media. Keep this in mind when choosing where to focus your efforts as you build your customer service strategy. 

A Personalized Experience

Even something as simple as mentioning a customer’s name makes them feel more “heard,” and less like a faceless customer service ticket. 71% of shoppers feel “frustrated” by an impersonal shopping experience. 

So make sure your team takes this into account. Asking a customer’s name, about their day, where they live, and other things can make the experience feel more personal and is likely to lead to a better overall customer experience. 

A Transfer-Free Resolution to their Problem

Nobody likes to be shuffled between customer service representatives. And while it’s sometimes necessary to do so – such as to escalate a problem to a manager, or in a similar situation – it’s always best to minimize transfers whenever possible. 

70% of customers are “irritated” when their call has to be transferred – even just once – to another department. This same study by Zendesk also showed that more than 70% of customers think that customer service representatives and different departments should collaborate with each other so that they don’t have to repeat their information multiple times.

The lesson is clear – train your team to minimize transfers, and make sure you have systems in place to make them more frictionless when they’re necessary.

Consistent Answers to their Questions

More than 75% of customers say that getting “inconsistent answers” is one of the most frustrating things about customer service. 

That makes sense. Especially if you have an issue with a purchase, the last thing you want is to have two different customer service representatives telling you different things about refund eligibility, shipping, and other such aspects of their case. 

This is why it’s important to train your customer service team well, and make sure they understand your policies properly. Failing to do so can result in inconsistencies that frustrate even your most loyal customers. 

Follow-Ups About the Resolution of their Case

Let’s say a customer contacts you to return a defective product. Your customer service representative accepts the return. The customer prints a label and sends it back to your warehouse. It takes you about 2 weeks to process the return.

After 2 weeks, your customer sends an email to you. They’re frustrated because they haven’t heard anything from your team. Is their refund processing? Is their replacement product shipping out? Was it even accepted? Do they need to do anything else?

This is just one example where being proactive and following up with customers could have prevented frustration with communication. So think about how you can be proactive, and reach out to customers even when their problems have been resolved. 70% of the customer journey depends on how well the customer feels they’re being treated – so taking these extra steps can really make a difference. 

Follow These Tips And Make Your Customers Happy!

Keeping up with what your customers really want is the best way to make sure you deliver five-star customer service. And happy customers stay loyal and even bring in new customers.

Want more tips on eCommerce website management, customer satisfaction, and more? Check out the 121eCommerce blog today – or contact us for a consultation if you’re interested in eCommerce development or need help implementing customer service tools and strategy.

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