Online Services Boost Customer Experience - and Retention
April 24, 2014
By Monica Gleberman, Contributing Writer
Customer service is a constant battle for companies. It can be the biggest asset you have or your weakest link. Nothing is more important than keeping your customers happy for retention purposes, growth, and good word of mouth. Many customers are willing to purchase something or try something from a new company if they hear from their friends how great the customer service was.
With the turn of the season, and new merchandise on the racks, it’s easy to forget the not-so-long-ago rush of holiday shopping that took place. The winter holidays are prime time for businesses, and once the holidays end, big retailers end up with a line of people in the customer service center waiting to be helped to get their items returned or exchanged.
A recent survey of 2,000 online consumers by eDigitalResearch and IMRG found that almost all respondents (96 percent) planned to shop online this past Christmas, with 48 percent purchasing at least half of their Christmas shopping on the Internet and 64 percent of smartphone shoppers planning to purchase more Christmas gifts from their devices compared to the previous year.
Now that doesn’t necessarily mean they are unhappy with the stores they want to purchase the items from, it just shows you more people are willing to make purchases online verses having to go into the store and wait on long lines to buy their family some gifts for the holidays.
The survey also asked 900 companies and agencies about having an integrated customer service experience and how that affects their business on a daily basis. The numbers deemed well for companies that went that extra mile. Almost 90 percent of those surveyed said they were able to improve on their customer retention and/or brand loyalty with the additional attention made to their online customers.
It might not be a bad idea to do a little research before you make some online purchases to see what companies have good return policies, deals on last minute shipping to get those presents in on time, and quality customer service help whether through an online chat or a toll free number. Looks like these services can make all the difference this holiday season.
Edited by Alisen Downey