Ecommerce Customer ServiceOutsourcing Tips
To succeed in ecommerce, you not only need to provide great products but also excellent customer service. Bringing in new customers is a costly daily challenge, but repeat customers tend to spend more than the occasional customer. This is why the most successful ecommerce businesses focus on providing exceptional customer service, so they gain a lot of loyal customers and keep them coming back for more.
Particularly high-growth ecommerce startups need to make tough decisions to handle their customer service in-house or outsource it. With the many benefits of outsourcing, for example, lower overhead costs, many ecommerce startups are choosing to outsource their customer service to offer competitive pricing and a dedicated customer service team to provide excellent service. This allows them to focus on the core business tasks and ways to scale.
The ecommerce competition is, without a doubt, extremely high. A startup business will need to focus on hyper-growth and ways to stand out from the rest. Companies like Zappos or Amazon are known for providing exceptional service and going above and beyond to ensure their customers are happy. When a company is known for providing excellent customer service, the word gets around in the form of word of mouth, referral, and positive online reviews. Having a 24/7 team dedicated to just providing customer service for your business is key, and outsourcing is the answer.
If your customers get poor service, it could completely damage your brand and your company’s success. One customer receiving bad customer service could result in negative reviews online about your business, them telling 15 people about their bad experience, as well as the loss of a repeat customer and referrals.
Customer Service Channels Every Business Should Consider
Nowadays, providing customer service only through the phone is just not enough. Providing all the modern types of support is necessary for the most pleasant buying experience. Millennials especially want their requests responded to quickly, like within the hour. If they need to wait a few hours for service, they may just go to the competition to buy rather than waiting. When outsourcing your customer service, ensure you’re getting all the service channels, including:
Phone: Your customer calls in needing help buying, have questions or concerns, it’s after business hours, they do not want to leave a message and wait for someone to call them back. They want an answer, and their needs to be taken care of almost instantly. Having a customer service team available to answer the phone 24/7 is a huge benefit and will keep your customers happy and coming back.
Social media: Today, 72% of the public uses social media, which means you will have customers and prospects contacting you through the most common platforms. Having your outsourced team handle these inquiries ensures they get a quick response rather than waiting until you get around to responding.
Live chat: Since ecommerce customers are online making a purchase, having a live chat feature is a nice convenience and an easy way for them to get a quick answer to a question that may arise before they make a purchase.
Email: Email is another way your customers will contact you with questions. Starting each day responding to the many emails of customers' questions or concerns is just not a productive way to spend your time if you really want to scale your business. When your outsourced customer service team handles service via email, you’re able to start your day completing core business tasks as well as growth planning and other activities that will assist with scaling your business.
SMS: Texting is the new calling in today’s day in age. Offering customer service through SMS to quickly get an answer to a question adds to a pleasant buying experience. Your outsourced customer service team could get a fast reply to your customers through SMS.
By offering customer service through multiple channels, you can be sure your prospects and customers are quickly taken care of, which is a great way to gain loyal customers. This high-touch customer service will assist in your business growth. You want to find one company to fulfill all of your customer service needs.
Start With Hiring an Awesome Company
Finding the right company to successfully handle your customer service through the different channels is important. Hiring one that has the resources and experience to take it on with little to no downtime to get started. One that has an upbeat, positive culture with happy staff that really enjoys working there. When a company takes care of its employees and creates a great working environment, it shows through their work. A winning corporate culture has been proven to increase employee engagement, productivity, and performance. It will also be more pleasant for you to work with them and feel like they are truly a part of your team.
Ensuring the outsourcing company you hire to handle your customer service has a focus on providing exceptional customer service is vital. Ask them if they have any stats on their customer service skills or any acknowledgments. When you are interviewing them, think about how they make you feel, show a genuine interest in you and your business, listen to your needs, and present solutions. This will also give you an idea of how they will make your customers feel, will they feel heard and taken care of. Are they easy to talk to? Can they also be light and fun while still professional and hard working?
You want your customers to receive excellent service from an awesome representative as this will be the way to gain loyal customers that are your brand advocates. Great customer service alone can help you scale your business with little to no marketing dollars spent. Your brand advocates will give you good reviews (don’t forget to ask for them), they will tell on average 15 people about their experience with your company and will come back to buy again!
The Details Matter
Since your customers will be contacting your outsourced team with all of their questions and buying needs, it’s super important to ensure they have all the answers. Giving them a list of Q&As that may arise is imperative. This also includes product and shipping details. Teach them about your history, your goals, and your priorities. The more they know about your business, the more they can effectively and smoothly handle your customers’ needs.
Outsourcing on a Global Scale
There are advantages to outsourcing your customer service offshore including the additional cost savings. Your customers don’t care (or most of the time know) where in the world your customer service team is located, they care about getting great products and service for a great price. However, if you offshore your customer service, you will need to ensure the team is fluent in English, both verbally and written. There are some countries, for example, the Philippines, where English is commonly spoken, so there’s not a language barrier.
Manage Your Team
The beauty of outsourcing your customer service is you don’t have to spend your days managing your customer service team. You will have a dedicated leader doing that for you. What you will need to do to manage is just receive and review reports, possibly weekly, have a meeting with them from time to time to adjust things like scripts, or give them additional knowledge or training on your companies processes. It makes running your business much easier, and you can be the most productive doing what you do best - growing your business.
With many businesses, especially the ecommerce industry, the standards of customer service continue to rise while profit margins shrink. Every year the market share competition gets more difficult. Outsourcing your customer services allows you to reduce your overhead costs and offer competitive pricing. Customers are even willing to pay slightly higher for a product if they’re getting exceptional service and feel taken care of.
You want to be known for providing excellent customer service through the various channels as it will help you stand out from the competition. This will help you win over more customers and create a large following of loyal customers. Your brand's reputation is on the line, so it's paramount you have an amazing dedicated team to wow your customers with exceptional service; outsourcing your customer service is the affordable and effective way.
Businesses that try to do everything themselves just are not able to scale as quickly as ones that get help for some of their processes. If you really want to scale your business, you will have to keep your day-to-day focus on revenue-producing tasks. The amount of time customer service takes is not feasible to handle yourself and do what’s needed to take your business to the next level. Let the customer service professionals handle it for you to be the most productive and profitable every day.
Contact Awesome CX today for all of your customer service needs, and we will show your customers how awesome you are!