How to Provide Stellar Ecommerce Customer Service: The Tools, Skills and Strategies You Need

As an ecommerce business owner, you know that providing excellent customer service is essential to your success.

After all, happy customers are more likely to return and make repeat purchases.

In this blog post, we'll discuss the tools, skills and strategies you need to provide excellent customer service in the ecommerce world. We'll also take a look at some of the unique challenges that come with providing customer support for online shoppers.

What is ecommerce customer service and how is it different from brick-and-mortar?

Ecommerce customer service is the process of providing support to customers who have or are willing to purchase products or services from an online store.

This can include responding to inquiries, resolving complaints and helping customers with any issues they may encounter while online shopping on your site.

ecommerce customer service

There are a few key reasons why ecommerce customer service is different from traditional brick-and-mortar customer service.

First of all, online shoppers often have higher expectations for quality support than those who shop in physical stores.

This is because they're used to being able to find information about products and services online, as well as chat with customer service representatives, without ever having to leave their home.

In addition, the nature of ecommerce transactions often makes it more difficult for customers to resolve issues on their own.

For example, if they order a product that is damaged or doesn't arrive as expected, they may not be able to return it to the store in person. This can make it even more important for your customer service team to provide high-quality customer service.

Ecommerce customer support

What are the benefits of providing ecommerce customer support?

There are many benefits that come with providing stellar ecommerce customer service, including:

  • Satisfied customers who will be likely to return and make repeat purchases on your site.
  • Ecommerce customer service builds trust and loyalty by  demonstrating that you're invested in your customers' experience and are willing to go the extra mile to help them.
  • Happy customers who will recommend your business to their friends and family.
  • Improved customer retention rates, which can lead to reduced marketing costs down the road.
  • Personalized services from your customer service team can improve customer relationships online.

Customer service is the backbone of your ecommerce business. Customers expect the best online shopping experience before they'll make online purchase decisions.

That's why ecommerce customer service is about being honest and authentic with your customers to answer customer requests, improve customer acquisition, build a base of loyal customers, and deliver a seamless customer experience.

When it comes to offering great ecommerce customer services, you should follow some best practices in the field.

ecommerce price tag

7 ecommerce customer service best practices

Online retailers must adapt to changing buyer behavior. Customer support is the cornerstone for the building relationships and the reassurance of customers.

This is why a high customer support level is essential.

Here are 7 ecommerce customer service best practices to follow:

1) Return policy

A good return policy is a big help. During the shopping process, many customers have doubts about buying from an online store because they can't touch or try products in person. This is more likely to happen with clothes and shoes than with electronics, for example. Although it may be hard to predict how the size of your product will fit, an excellent return policy can help you.

2) Fulfillment Policy

A fulfillment policy is a set of rules that merchants must follow when selling their products on marketplaces such as Amazon and eBay. These policies outline the requirements that sellers must meet to achieve high-quality customer service standards (e.g., support cancellation requests within a certain timeframe, ensure products are shipped on time, etc.).

3) Product Images

It is important that your product images are high quality and accurately represent the product. Customers will be disappointed if they order a product based on an image on your website only to receive something completely different in person.

ecommerce product image

4) Shipping Times

Customers expect their orders to arrive on time, or even earlier than the estimated delivery date. If an order is delayed, customers will be upset and may not want to shop with you again.

5) Order Tracking

Customers appreciate being able to track their orders online. This allows them to see where their package is and when it is expected to arrive.

6) Customer service availability  

Customers expect to be able to contact customer service representatives 24/365. They should be able to reach your customer service team by phone, email, or chat.

7) Price

It is important that you price your products fairly. If you charge too much, customers will be unhappy and may not want to shop with you again. If you charge too little, you may not make a profit.

Now that we know how to take our ecommerce customer service to the next level, let's look at some of the best practices for providing support.

ecommerce pricing

7 critical customer service skills and techniques for ecommerce businesses

The most important skill for providing ecommerce customer service is excellent customer service skills.

You need to be able to deal with customers in a polite and professional manner, no matter how angry or frustrated they may be. You should also have a good understanding of the product or service you're selling and be able to answer technical questions about it.

1) Be responsive

When a customer contacts you, they expect a response within a reasonable timeframe. If you can't answer their question right away, let them know when you will be able to and then follow through on your promise.

2) Be polite and respectful

When communicating with customers, be polite and respectful. Even if the customer is being rude or unreasonable, it is important to stay calm and professional.

3) Listen to their concerns

If a customer has a complaint, listen to what they have to say. Don't interrupt them and let them finish before you respond.

4) Offer solutions

When resolving a problem, focus on offering solutions instead of assigning blame or making excuses.

Customers want to feel like their concerns are being taken seriously and that you will do your best to fix the issue as quickly as possible.

5) Follow up

Once an issue is resolved, follow up with the customer to make sure they are satisfied with the outcome.

6) Treat customers as individuals

Customers want to feel like they're important and valued, so treat them as individuals.

Don't use generic scripts or canned responses when communicating with customers; instead, address their specific needs and concerns.

7) Under promise, over deliver

If you promise a customer that you will have a resolution to their issue within a certain timeframe, try to resolve the problem even sooner.

This will make them happy and likely to shop with you again in the future.

Best Ecommerce customer service software tools

There are a number of customer service software options that are perfect for ecommerce businesses.

These platforms allow you to manage customer interactions through chat, email, phone, and social media channels. They also offer reporting tools that help you track customer satisfaction.

Pick a tool that consolidates your helpdesk and project management into one like DoneDone.

Now that we know the best practices for providing ecommerce customer service, let's take a look at some of the tools and software that can help us succeed.

ecommerce tasks

Help Desk Software

There are a number of help desk software options available, but not all of them are suitable for ecommerce businesses.

Make sure the software you choose has the following features:

  1. Automated responses. The software should be able to send a standard email reply when a customer submits an inquiry. This saves time and ensures that every question or concern is addressed in a timely manner.
  2. Ecommerce integrations. If you use an ecommerce platform like Shopify, BigCommerce, Magento, or WooCommerce, the help desk software should be able to integrate with it. This will allow you to manage customer interactions and orders from a single platform.
  3. Ticket management. The software should allow you to manage customer tickets through a ticketing system. This will help you keep track of all interactions with a customer and ensure that no question or concern goes unanswered.
  4. Analytics tools. The software should include an analytics tool that allows you to measure customer satisfaction levels and identify problem areas. It should also have the ability to track how many chats are initiated by customers, how long they last, what time of day they take place on average (i.e. peak hours), and more
task management ecommerce

Project management software

You may also want to consider using project management software. This will help you keep track of tasks, manage team members and collaborate on projects. It also allows you to set due dates for each task so that nothing falls through the cracks.

Features to look for:

  1. Task management. The software should allow you to create and assign tasks, set due dates for each task, and track the status of a project. It should also have the ability to manage multiple projects at once.
  2. Collaboration. The software should include collaboration features like chat, history and more to allow team members from different departments (i.e. customer service, marketing, sales, etc.) to work together on projects. This will help ensure that all tasks are completed on time and that everyone is kept in the loop.
  3. Reporting tools. The software should include reporting tools that allow you to track project progress, measure team productivity, and identify problem areas.
  4. Pre-built workflows. The software should include pre-built workflows for taking tasks from idea to completion that allow you to quickly create and manage projects. This will save you time and ensure that all tasks are completed in a timely manner.
  5. Priorities, Due Dates, Tagging, and Linking to Other Tasks. The software should allow you to set priorities for each task, assign due dates, and tag tasks with keywords that make it easily searchable. In addition, you want a tool that links other similar tasks to the task at hand to create a bigger picture of the project.
ecommerce collaboration

Better yet: choose a tool that combines help desk and project management into one

If you choose a tool that combines help desk and project management into one it will significantly improve your ecommerce customer service. You won't have to switch between tools or waste time copying and pasting data from one platform to another.

  1. It will increase scalability. By using a service desk or shared inbox for support, customer happiness agents flag product feature requests and common questions. They’ll then share this feedback with the rest of company to inform changes and improvements.
  2. It also makes it easier for your team members to collaborate. If you can access customer service tickets and projects from the same place, this fosters collaboration naturally.
  3. It's much more cost-effective. You won't have to pay for two separate tools when you can get both features in one software solution.ing
  4. It improves team productivity. You'll never need to worry about who put what where or which tool has the right info again. Instead, it's all right there in your one tool to rule them all.

Selecting the right customer service communication channels

When it comes to your team of customer service agents providing exceptional ecommerce customer service, there are many different communication channels online businesses can use. Some of the most common customer service channels include:

Email

Email is another popular channel for ecommerce customer service. It's a great way for a customer service agent to communicate with customers, answer questions, and provide instructions that inevitably help to build customer loyalty and improve the customer experience.

Knowledge base

A knowledge base is a collection of information about your product or service that's organized by topic. The purpose of a knowledge base is to provide your customers with easy access to answers their questions without having to contact a customer service representative directly for help. You should have a knowledge base for each product or service you offer if you want to provide a truly solid customer experience.

Tutorials, videos, guides and FAQs

Tutorials, videos, and guides are a great way to help your customers learn how to use your product or service and improve customer experience.

For effective ecommerce customer service, you should create tutorials and guides for each of your products and services, and make them easily accessible on your website. Your customer support team can help you here.

An FAQ is a collection of questions and answers about a particular topic and another solid form of customer support. It's a great way to provide information to your customers without having to answer the same questions over and over again.

You should have an FAQ for each product or service you offer, as well as a general FAQ that covers common questions about your company and policies.

Data-driven ways to improve ecommerce customer service

If you want to improve your ecommerce customer service, it's important to use data-driven techniques.

Customer data is always your friend for building customer loyalty.

Here are some of the best ways to do this:

  1. Capture customer feedback and analyze it. It's important that you collect feedback from customers on a regular basis and then analyze it to determine what they like about your product or service and what they don't like. This information can be used to improve your product or service, provide a better customer experience, and deliver more personalized service to increase customer satisfaction.
  2. Use customer surveys. Customer surveys are another great way to collect data from customers. You can use surveys to find out what your customers think about your product or service, how satisfied they are with it, and what they would like to see improved.
  3. Track customer engagement. It's important to track customer engagement so you can see which channels are most effective for communicating with customers and providing support.

You can use this customer data and information to focus your efforts on the channels that provide the best results.

customer support

Ecommerce customer service: What sets your business apart

ECommerce customer service can be the deciding factor that sets your business apart from the competition.

In order to provide stellar customer service, you need to have a variety of skills, strategies and tools at your disposal.

In this article, we've outlined some of the most important ones.

  • Make sure you have the tools you need. The first step in providing stellar ecommerce customer service is having the right tools. You'll need a good help desk and project management system to manage and improve customer satisfaction with your online business, keep tabs on contact information and link important tasks to real customer inquiries.
  • Leverage self-service platforms for help. It's also important to have a knowledge base, FAQs, guides and tutorials so customers can find answers on their own without reaching out to your customer service team
  • Be data-driven. You should also use data-driven techniques like collecting customer feedback and analyzing it, using customer surveys to gather information about what your customers think about your product or service, as well as tracking engagement with different communication channels to improve overall customer satisfaction.
  • Brush up your ecommerce customer service skills. In order to provide stellar ecommerce customer service, you'll also need to have the necessary skills. You'll need to be able to communicate effectively with customers through different channels, solve problems and answer questions, and provide support in a timely manner.

In the end, customer service can be the reason someone shops at your online store instead of going somewhere else—and that's reason enough to invest in it.

If you're a customer support manager, we encourage you to sign up for DoneDone, the easiest shared inbox and help desk for customer support teams.

With DoneDone, you can easily manage customer inquiries, track customer satisfaction, and resolve problems quickly and efficiently.

Sign up for a free trial today and see for yourself how easy it is to manage your customer support team with DoneDone.

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