by Tom Shackleton
For any new eCommerce store, providing excellent customer service right from the get go can make a huge difference.
You need to build the reputation of your eCommerce store and give customers confidence that you’re a professional business that really cares.
If you’re to do this, you’ll need to think carefully about resourcing customer service and support for your eCommerce store. You’ll have to consider the different systems, procedures and tools that will need to be implemented, and use them effectively to serve your customers.
Here’s our guide to resourcing your eCommerce support and customer service.
Staffing & Training
To start with, you’ll have to make provisions for the staff and human resources required to properly resource your customer service.
You’ll most likely have to think about hiring customer service staff or support agents to assist customers throughout the purchasing process.
This means considering the resources you’ll need both to recruit and employ these members of staff.
Once you have customer service staff in place, you may also have to provide them with training on an ongoing basis. If you’re to ensure that your customer support remains at a high standard, regular training will be a must.
On-Site Support Channels
Once your support staff are ready to go, think about the support and customer service resources you’ll need on your site to engage visitors while they browse.
Your on-site customer service is vital for removing barriers to purchase and helping customers find the products that are right for them.
You may want to think about adding a live chat service to your site to offer advice and help to customers as they search through your site.
You may also think about setting aside resources for regularly updating your service pages such as delivery and returns information.
You’ll also definitely want to allocate resources to maintaining and improving your product descriptions, site navigation and the general usability of your eCommerce site.
Off-Site Support Channels
As well as the on-site customer service and support you’ll need to resource, it’s also important to think about off-site resources that will make up an important part of your customer service.
Perhaps the most important of these are your social media channels. These are vital touch points for any eCommerce store, and will help you engage with customers, provide them with social proof and solve their queries.
You should also think about allocating resources to email marketing. Not only will this help you to keep customers engaged, but you’ll also be able to provide them with targeted and personalised information that will give them the best experience possible.
Consider through which channels your customers will want to contact you. You should resource support channels that customers are eager to engage with, to give them the simplest, most enjoyable experience.
In addition to your active customer service and support resources, you will also want to make provision for more passive methods; support channels and tools that your support staff don’t actively engage with customers through, but are nevertheless a vital part of your customer service and support.
These will include things like automated emails for orders, deliveries and abandoned carts. These will help to keep customers informed throughout the purchasing process and allow you to offer useful information and deals through automations.
Again, you should also think about things such as on-site FAQs and knowledge banks to help inform customers. Producing content for a blog on a regular basis can be another great way of keeping customers informed and informing their purchasing decisions.
Resourcing your support infrastructure well will take pressure off your support team and allow them to allocate more time to each customer.
Customer Service Software
Finally, a growing eCommerce business will need to think about allocating resources to customer service software and dedicated systems. This will help to organise and streamline the customer service and support process.
You may wish to consider a help desk system to manage customer queries and allow you to implement support tickets.
As your business grows, your need to resource systems like this will increase. Otherwise, your level of customer service may drop.
You might also want to consider a CRM system to manage customer accounts and historical support data.
When resourcing a new or growing eCommerce store, you’ll have to allocate time and funds to various different areas.
It may seem like there is a lot to consider, but fully resourcing your customer support will vastly improve the experience of shoppers and help to build a strong, loyal customer base - and make your online store stand out from the rest.
Great customer service can be the key to building a robust foundation for your eCommerce business and ensuring that it continues to grow for years to come.
Interested in finding out more about how Statement could help you to resource and implement customer service systems for your eCommerce store? Feel free to get in touch and one of our team would be happy to help.