How to Run a Customer-Focused Business

As an ecommerce store owner, you want the best design and the friendliest user experience for your site if you’re going to rake in income to the tune of the big box stores like Amazon and the likes.

Dare to Streamline some customer experience from visit to purchase through to checkout and delivery and see how much more income it can drive to your store. Successful e-commerce sites are attractive, well-ranked in search engines, unique, and grab a visitor’s attention at first glance.

You need to focus on core points to improve customer interaction in your ecommerce store.

  1.  Reviews and Comments Drive purchases— be “social proof.”

Most, if not all of us, almost certainly check reviews and comments whenever we go window or actual shopping over the internet. This is because you want a product that has gained the confidence of many users. That’s how big Ecommerce stores have managed to keep up with the competition.

Studies show that 70 percent of online consumers look at a product review to determine whether or not they will make a purchase. It is therefore essential to include a reviews and comments area on your site where customers can rate and offer suggestions on services and products.

  1.  Offer Unswerving Customer Support

Sometimes we experience hitches at some point in the ecommerce process, and while to err is human, to offer the buyer exceptional customer care is divine to your web-based store.

Unswerving customer support is important in gaining shoppers’ confidence knowing they will be assisted when they need help.

Every online store should have these in their customer service area

  • Phone
  • Email
  • Company physical address
  • Mail address

Live chat features should also be considered because they offer a modern experience and closer and fast customer interaction.

  1.  A Hassle-free Return Policy

Having a clear and concise return policy efficiently deals with problems that can arise during delivery. Buyers need to know that they will be eased of the burden of loss when they are not satisfied with the authenticity of a product. The return policy should be clear and helpful to both the buyer and you, the site owner.

  1.  What’s your brand’s story?

Once your ecommerce store is optimized in all dimensions to offer the best user experience, the task is to inform the prospects about the site and what product or service it deals with— and that’s where blog posts and your company’s story come in.

A consistent blogging presence and advertising your company’s narrative are essential in letting visitors and followers learn about your store and its goals. Holding up your brand to pull more traffic to your store is crucial.

Building and Maintaining Good Brand Reputation

Chasing after a customer is like chasing after a lady (or a dude)! You want her so bad, and when you finally win her, you realize there’s much more to be done to keep the relationship alive and benefit both parties.

Business-customer rapports kick off like any romantic relationship. At first, the shopper is full of expectations (and so is the buyer). But some mistakes and disappointments during the customer journey can lead to disagreements, stir arguments, and trigger breakups in the worst cases.

Breakups are bad because they lead to lost customers and revenue and can sometimes result in a bad brand reputation.

What Can Make or Break Your Brand Name

Many things lead to a bad customer experience resulting in churn and abandonment, including unmet expectations, poor experience, etc.

But what most businesses don’t realize is that; for issues that can be fixed, a client tries to reach out to a business’s customer service department several times before giving up, dropping a stinker review, and looking for another alternative.

So failure to meet shopper expectations and an unresponsive customer support department is the perfect recipe for disaster in ecommerce.

But again, you want to meet shopper expectations because that’s the whole point of being in businesses. And the only way to do so is to understand the shopper’s journey and build your services to address all customer pain points.

After that, you can bring in unswerving customer support to complement your customer-focused business strategy to maintain a good brand reputation.

How to Maintain a Desirable Brand Name

To cultivate and keep a good brand reputation, always keep an eye on these three important things.

  1.  Promise Customers ONLY what you can live up to

Customers hate it when you set the bar so high and then fail to live up to your promise.

If you say you offer free shipping and delivery in 2 – 3 days, then so be it. If you offer free shipping with conditions, please state it clearly on your web pages. Also, if you promise to be available active on live chat from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., then so be it.

Customers make buying decisions based on such things, navigating from store to store and looking for what they want. So when they choose you, remember you have some money to make and a promise to keep.

That said, never make any promise that you cannot live up to. And to uphold the brand reputation, apologize in advance when you realize you are about to break a promise. Explain to the customer that you failed to deliver as expected because of this and that.

  1.  Offer a Perfect Customer Experience

Your website must be visitor-friendly. A well-built ecommerce store should; be easy to navigate, free of clutter, organized with detailed product listings, and fast loading. The checkout page design should be optimized to boost conversion rates.

Integrating extra features like live chat and help desk systems can go a long way in improving your site’s experience because they improve the quality of customer support you offer clients.

Also, all the information and resources that matter to customers should be arranged to appear at the relevant stages of the customer journey.

And lastly, eliminate redundant and unnecessary steps to simplify the customer journey.

  1.  Strive to Stand Out

Brands that attract a rich regional and international market base and uphold their brand reputation, like Amazon and Alibaba, go the extra mile.

The X-factor is what draws the line between you and competitor brands. For instance, Amazon is pacing the shift to same-day shipping same day delivery with its Amazon Prime Drones.

But that’s Amazon, rich with resources to implement such systems— what of your small business? Well, standing out does not always have to involve expensive budgets and competing against market-movers.

An affordable, innovative idea can get everyone talking about your brand within and outside borders.

Brand reputation is everything. What people say about you can make or break the future of your growing business.

How Small Business Owners Can Build Early Customer Trust

Many factors influence a customer’s decision to purchase from a given brand or store, but trust is king in building loyalty.

It starts long-lasting business success by fostering repeat buyers and referrals and encouraging feedback. But it takes courage and patience to build trust; it doesn’t come overnight.

And for some sectors like health care, auto repair, or child care service providers, building trust is something that should happen as soon as possible—they can’t afford the luxury of time because the survival of their small firms depends on winning a new customer’s trust.

Such high-risk industries have a tainted reputation and lost public trust, and new company owners must work very hard to prove their credibility.

Why build trust?

Customer recommendations by word of mouth can help bring in a stream of new buyers and expand your business.

It is happening at North West Bloor Motor Works, an auto repair shop. The company began in the 90s and has so far built a name. Now, it employs up to nine mechanics and fixes approximately 90 cars weekly.

Isn’t it amazing how influential brand trust is, given that 20 years later, the company still serves its old customers? “Our success still comes down to going an extra mile and giving a personal touch to every customer,” says Charles Bloor, the founder.

Goodwill is an intangible asset you acquire when purchasing an existing business. Much of what makes up its value are repeat customers, which is not very easy to get for a car mechanic.

That explains why you should handle every customer with care. Treat your customer just as you’d want to be treated; you can never go wrong. And while it is difficult to please or satisfy every buyer, you should do everything possible to prove your trustworthiness.

Make your customers stay.

Retain your brand’s logo and all aspects of your automotive repair business that makes it stand out. If your auto repair shop has a culture of checking engine oil before changing, that should stay.

Customers get attached to brands for different reasons. Your job as the business owner is to determine the level of trust your customers expect from you and what could make them lose faith in you. That way, you can walk your path carefully, avoid what could ruin your name, and focus on what can better your bottom line.

Building trust as early as possible is one way to get ahead of your business counterparts. You not only win customers but also get to retain them.

The Importance of Customer Review and Feedback and How to collect them 

Collecting consumer feedback and reviews is as crucial as any other part of your micro-business— so pay as much attention to it as you do to seeking business loans with no credit. Let’s face it; if main markets like Amazon and eBay use product reviews and merchant feedback to their advantage, then you should try it.

Feedback helps an ecommerce store understand customer experience and buying habits today and in the future, while customer reviews are a vital tool in converting visitors into buyers.

In fact, in a survey by Dimensional Research for Zendesk, 90% percent of the candidates said positive reviews influenced their purchase habits. Another 86 percent said negative feedback influenced their purchasing decisions.

Why do consumers look at online reviews?

  • To see more about the product/service they are paying for
  • To reduce the risk of a bad purchase
  • To check the product/service advantages and disadvantages
  • To get proof from customers who have used the service/ product

How do you get consumer feedback?

  1.  Send emails

Emails are an excellent way to gather reviews. Send friendly emails asking the buyer to comment on the product. Comprehensive reviews of the items on your website may also help with SEO and better your ranking.

Honest buyer feedback can also sway more buyers your way or point out areas of your service or product that you need to improve. Be careful not to bother the customer with your feedback request.

  1.  Live Chat

Millennials want instant replies. Adding Live Chat to your company’s website lets you answer questions and get feedback from consumers in real-time, which buyers appreciate.

It is a shot worth taking; you can try out the many different options, e.g., HelpOnClick. If possible, leave a message directing customers on how to reach you past working hours.

  1.  Conduct web-based surveys

Setting up an online survey for your ecommerce store is easy, just like analyzing its results. Tools like Survey Monkey can help you with this task.

Simply draft questions and forward the link leading to these to your list of buyers. Also, send the same link to your Facebook and Twitter followers and make it prominent for site visitors to fill in after purchase.

Surveys give great insight into customers. But how you design questions matters—use simple language to get useful feedback. Be specific with the kind of info you expect to get. And lastly, be precise.

Final words

Always treat your buyers kindly and ensure they enjoy the best experience. Remember, they are the greatest marketing tool you have.