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Roundtable: Customer service in eCommerce

 

We joined UKFast, No No No, and Stream Market in a roundtable at eCommerce Expo, going back to basics on delivering exceptional customer service, and how it can win you customers, improve reputation and increase sales. 


Simon Blake, Client Services Director at 9xb, opened the conversation citing a recent client who was looking to mirror the bricks and mortar experience of their customers online. Simple changes such as introducing their nearest branch manager, a click and collect option and ensuring the phone number is obvious on every page, all help to drive frictionless sales. For many retailers, this will be key for survival over the next few years.  


Social media for customer service 


Brands need to start embracing social media in their customer service strategy. Conversations are happening whether retailers like it or not, and need to be monitored. How companies deal with complaints is what’s important. 


Customers want to interact with human brands. Most loyal customers have often had a negative experience that has been turned around so effective customer service is really powerful. 


Live chat for customer service 


‘We shouldn’t hide behind technology.’ Instant chat is only a good tool if it is monitored and used properly. If it is, then it can be a great channel for dealing with simple customer service queries, such as questions about returns or product queries. 


Not all customers want to engage with you over the telephone. Live chat provides another option. However, it’s important to have the resources available to respond quickly. No live chat is better than a poorly managed live chat. 


Audio in customer service 


Audio is an upcoming channel which we’re already seeing take over from text messaging in everyday life and we’re starting to see it used as a way for consumers to interact with brands. 


Personalisation in customer service 


Personalisation is now becoming the norm for many online sites and consumers now expect to visit a page and see only products that are relevant to them. Capturing visitor data, understanding customer preferences, and using that information to effectively transform the online experience is paramount. 


Finally, the panel provided their top tips for small to medium eCommerce businesses

  • Concentrate on how products and content are presented on the site. Show as much information as possible, in a digestible way, to reduce the pressure on customer service.
  • Embrace technology to help you effectively serve customers, for example, Social media monitoring tools.

"Look at customer service as a revenue generating unit, not a cost unit. Great customer service drives customer happiness and loyalty and should be a priority for any business."
 

View the full recording


About the panel: 


Arlene Bulfin 
Director of People Development , UKFast 
After four years teaching at schools in Greater Manchester, Arlene joined the Training, Education and Development team at UKFast to help transform IT education in the North West. Arlene and the team work with 60 schools and more than 60,000 students in the region to promote digital education. The programme that they are building includes a double award-winning apprenticeship scheme and has developed UKFast’s own workforce into one of the most qualified cloud technology teams in the country. 
 


Simon Blake 
Client Services Director , 9xb 
In the last 14 years Simon has worked in the digital marketing sector providing strategic advice and consultancy to major clients across the UK and Europe. Now specialising in eCommerce, Simon’s work with clients is to understand their business objectives, explore the opportunities and provide innovative solutions that deliver maximum return on investment. Now working for 9xb, one of the North of England’s premier full service eCommerce agencies, Simon has developed and implemented solutions to complex eCommerce challenges for a number of leading brands. 



Gursaant Singh 
Founder, Stream Market 
Gursaant began his career as a Web Developer and moved into sales before pursuing his dream to set up his Digital Agency; StreamMarket. As an entrepreneur, Gursaant has more than 14 years’ experience in the eCommerce Industry with a degree in Engineering. Gursaant founded StreamMarket (Red Apple Solution Ltd) in 2009; providing bespoke eCommerce solutions for online sellers using Magento since 2011. 


 


Jaakko Timonen 
Founder and CEO, No No No 
Jaakko is the Founder and CEO of No No No, a transparent compliant resolution platform that helps companies avoid negative reviews, boost customer retention and improve online reputation. 
 

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