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The direct-to-customer industry is indeed the fastest-growing trade in the shortest period. This market breakthrough led to rapid technological developments and shifts in shopping preferences and customer expectations. This change also significantly improved people's impulsiveness.
The pandemic even pushed people to choose stay-at-home shopping. It was indeed the safer way to shop. However, the travel restrictions became one of the more crucial reasons why "add to cart" became everyone's go-to guilty pleasure. Shopping became as easy as dialing a phone directory assistance number, browsing online or chatting with a live agent.
This boost in online shopping preference also made competition among small business owners more cutthroat. With Amazon's 50% online retail sales rate, getting ahead takes a lot of work. Aside from competing with big marketplaces like Alibaba and Amazon, these online store owners must beat each other.
Unparalleled Customer Service Is the Way To Go
One of the reasons for this e-commerce juggernaut’s dominance is its unparalleled customer service. With this, the companies were able to establish customer trust. Hence, it's almost automatic for these buyers to return for more.
While these facts seem disheartening for small business owners, they also open an opportunity. Now you know their customer service persuades people to make a purchase. This fact means you can build your business's customer service department based on the best practices of these successful companies.
Best Practices That Can Help Your E-commerce Business
Most businesses think that e-commerce contact centers are money holes. One of the key reasons is that this center relies heavily on its agents or human resources. Aside from that, you have to pay for office space and infrastructure.
Indeed, finding the right talent for customer support can be difficult and time-consuming. Once hired, agents require intensive training. Unfortunately, the industry also experiences a high attrition rate, which leads to significant cost increases.
However, even Amazon believes investing in these call centers is worthwhile. It may have closed most of its physical call centers, but it was to push customer service agents to work from home. Hiring the right people can boost your business. You can also reduce costs by following what Amazon did—employ remote workers.
If you're ready to invest in a customer contact center for your business, consider the following best practices:
Ensure agent happiness
High agent turnover is one of the reasons why keeping a customer contact center running becomes costly. You can significantly save if you can lessen employer attrition. Here are some ways you can keep your agents happy.
Focus on performance: Set a clear and quantifiable metric to evaluate employee performance. Ensure that these metrics rely on impact. Encourage your agents to work for the customers instead of beating the clock. Reward people who meet these goals and provide career growth opportunities.
Provide the proper training and tools: Ensure your agents are prepared for battle. Automate redundant processes and let your agents focus on improving the customer experience. Also, remember to help them learn these tools before allowing them to use them. It would also help if you constantly upskill your people so they feel valued and equipped.
Deliver maximum value: Your contact center should be more than a mere call mill. Instead of counting inbound or outbound calls, ensure that customers exert the least effort in contacting you.
Invest in apps that make your agent's life easier
One of the most useful apps for your agents provides customer information at a glance. Choose an app to generate an insights card when your center phone rings. This app will give your agents valuable information about the caller, such as their name, order place, lifetime value, last order date and more.
With these pieces of information readily available, your agents can save time. They can collect caller information and address the callers' needs more efficiently.
Automate note-taking and call logging
Choose a tool to save your agents several hours a week on logging call notes in your customer relationship management (CRM).
The ideal tool should automate the process of logging calls and capturing notes on your behalf. When the phone rings, your chosen tool should generate a ticket in real time and assign it to a specific agent. At the end of the call, any notes taken on the app and the call recording should also be automatically logged and attached to the ticket. This seamless integration will streamline your workflow and enable your team to focus on more critical tasks.
Link your e-commerce store to your CRM
These steps can help you set up a Shopify call center. You can also follow these steps for WooCommerce and Magento.
Before anything else, you need to choose a CRM for your business.
Create an account in your chosen CRM and link your Shopify store. You can also connect different support channels during setup. These CRMs usually support live chat, Instagram, Facebook and email. It should take roughly 10 minutes to complete the linking process.
If you want to add phone support, follow your CRM's process. You'll only need to sign up for this feature most of the time.
Once you have an account, you can port your existing number or purchase a new one.
Follow the setup instructions to establish your routing rules, voicemails and IVR tree.
After that, connecting the two applications is as simple as two clicks.
Congratulations! Your Shopify call center is now up and running. You can now assist customers across all channels from one central location.
Small Business Owners Need to Shape Up
Small business owners must meet the same customer service standards set by big corporations. This scenario is where excellent customer service plays a crucial role. Many businesses rely heavily on automation to achieve this goal. However, human interactions with agents remain the most effective way to foster customer loyalty and build rapport.
The past few years have highlighted the need for human connection and pushed businesses to treat their customers with greater empathy. Today, an e-commerce contact center is one of the most effective means of customer service.
Undoubtedly, e-commerce contact center services are advantageous for building brand loyalty. They offer a way to personalize customer support and generate revenue. You should explore this option today if you're a small business owner.