You got your customer to the “Buy Button”, now how will you keep them happy and encourage them to shop with you again?
Guest blog by Lauren Macdonald of eBridge Connections.
You’re already halfway there!
Getting your customer to fill their cart and complete the checkout process is half the battle. If you’re receiving a lot of orders each month (200+ for example) then you’re already doing a great job of making it easy for customers to complete the checkout process. That’s great news (and not always an easy thing to accomplish), so congrats!
Now it’s time to improve your “after-the-sale” experience:
A lot of businesses make the mistake of focusing only on getting those orders (and as many of them as they can) and put too little focus on what happens after the customer hits the buy button. This can potentially cause all sorts of problems for your customers and may even discourage them from shopping with you again.
The key to keeping customers happy and encouraging them to come back for more is making sure they have a positive experience from the moment they check out, to the moment their item arrives at their door. And, if they wish to return or exchange their item, you want to ensure that process is smooth and efficient for them as well.
Here’s what might happen if you don’t focus on impressing after-the-sale:
- Your customer might get shipped the wrong order.
- Your customer might receive their order WAY too late (i.e. Not in time for Christmas).
- Your customer might have ordered an item that wasn’t actually in stock, Your customer’s order might be shipped to the wrong address due to a manual data entry error.
- Your customer may go online and leave you a negative review which can be damaging to your reputation.
- You may lose a customer that would have bought from you again and again if they had had a better experience.
So, how do you avoid these issues and improve your customers’ experience?
Buyer expectations are high. In an age where eCommerce leaders like Amazon are getting products to customers’ doors sometimes within the same day, you need to be on your “A-game” if you hope to compete.
Having a slick after-the-sale process will make the customer happy. End of story.
Following best practices for after-the-sale can go a long way in keeping your customers happy, and returning to your store for repeat business. These best practices include fast and accurate order processing and open communication.
Here are the steps that ‘matter’ after-the-sale:
- Your customer clicks the ‘buy’ button and immediately receives a confirmation that their order was received with confirmed order details.
- Your customer receives the tracking information for their order within the promised timeframe.
- Their order arrives on time and is correctly fulfilled.
- Anything that needs to be returned or exchanged can be done quickly and with ease.
- Their payment and/or refund are processed fast and accurately.
Here are 5 things you can do, right now, that will help accomplish the steps mentioned above:
- Write down the steps currently involved in your sales process. (From order processing to payment processing, to entering details into your accounting/ERP system, to fulfilling the order and updating inventory, shipping/tracking information, and processing returns/exchanges). Remember that each and every step is equally important.
- Identify which steps are currently automated, and which are manual (i.e. “Inventory levels across multiple stores need to be manually adjusted in my accounting system”).
- Consider which manual steps can easily become automated steps with a simple accounting/ERP to eCommerce store data integration solution.
- Decide whether to integrate your applications in-house, or outsource to a vendor that is an expert in Accounting/ERP Integration solutions.
- Plan your Accounting/ERP integration solution today with this easy to use Blueprint Builder that allows you to map the data points you would ideally integrate.
Get started today and improve your after-the-sale experience. Your customers will thank you for it!
About eBridge Connections
eBridge Connections delivers powerful, cloud-based ERP and accounting integration solutions that automate vital business processes and eliminate the need for manual data entry. The eBridge universal integration platform supports over 30 ERP and accounting systems including products from Sage, Microsoft, SAP, NetSuite, and Epicor. With connections to the leading eCommerce and CRM applications, plus hundreds of EDI trading partners, eBridge Connections has become the integration platform of choice for businesses worldwide. For more information, please visit www.ebridgeconnections.com.