Stop me if this sounds familiar.
Your business starts to grow, but then so too does the volume of incoming support tickets. You worry your team members won’t be able to handle this rise in requests, so you turn to ecommerce customer service software to help you out. After all, it’s designed to keep you organized, simplify your infrastructure, and improve the overall customer experience.
Yet, you’ve suddenly hit a roadblock: how do you know which solution can actually get the job done?
There are scores of options out there promising everything under the sun. However, only a few have that X factor that can really transform your customer service.
In this guide, we’ll explore what to look for when evaluating ecommerce customer service, and how to choose the right one for your business.
What is ecommerce customer service software?
Ecommerce customer service software is an umbrella term that describes any set of tools that allows online businesses to provide support to shoppers before, during, and/or after making a purchase. While not synonymous with the term, this software is often linked to automation technology – which plays a vital role in ensuring companies are able to deliver personalized customer service at scale.
When thinking about ecommerce customer service software it’s important to remember that it needs to extend past your website and let you seamlessly assist with customer interactions across all of your channels – whether that’s online chat, email, or even social media.
Think of it this way, with the right solution you’re able to enhance the traditional in-store experience; replacing it with a customer-centric approach that’s truly unique to every one of your shoppers. In doing so, you’ll be able to foster meaningful customer interactions and ultimately, build brand loyalty.
Despite these shared gains, ecommerce customer service software still comes in all shapes and sizes—just like ecommerce brands. What works for another company, even your closest competitor, might not work for you. To find the right software, you’ve got to look under the hood and see just how much each can offer your organization, support team, and customers.
How to choose the best ecommerce customer service software for your business
At first glance, judging customer service software may seem overwhelming. However, finding the right solution starts with evaluating how effectively it allows you to provide excellent customer care at scale, return time to your agents, and grow your business.
Provide excellent customer care at scale
Not all support tools take customer satisfaction into account. Far from it. Most focus on fulfilling just a single function, or offer a way to only store support tickets – rather than providing an effective solution for handling them – inevitably leaving you with an insurmountable backlog.
The good ones allow for your customer support to grow with your business by offering service teams the breathing room to deliver personalized experiences to their customers. While the best ones take this one step further by helping you deliver instant, 24/7 support regardless of where your customers are or even their preferred language.
To find a solution that adequately cares for customers, you should start by assessing its ability to deliver on the following 5 features.
- Instant 24/7 support: Are customers waiting hours, or even longer, to receive support? You need a solution that will empower you to provide instant answers to common and incredibly specific questions alike.
- Omnichannel communication: Can you ensure a seamless customer experience across all support channels like chat, email, and social media? Regardless of where the conversation starts (or moves to) customers shouldn’t have to repeat their information or their reason for contacting your business.
- Smart ticket routing: Are you able to connect shoppers with the most qualified agent the first time? Constantly redirecting shoppers not only hurts the customer experience but is a waste of your agents’ time.
- In-depth customer context: Do your agents have a clear picture of who they’re engaging with? You need to be able to quickly collect key buyer information – such as location or order status – in order to deliver the personalized experiences customers crave.
- Scalability: Is your solution designed to grow with you? Your support needs will evolve with your business. To keep up, your customer support solution should enable you to deliver excellent customer support regardless of how many customers you get or where they’re located.
Software with these powerful assets ensures you’re able to deliver superior support at scale. As we noted, doing so is that crucial first step in creating meaningful experiences.
With fiercely loyal customers, Missouri Star Quilt Co. was initially skeptical that any customer support software could deliver highly personalized service. With Zowie, they’ve been able to scale customer care while enhancing the customer experience.
Return time to your agents
Once you assess the software’s ability to deliver excellent customer care, the next thing to evaluate is its potential to return your agents’ most valuable asset, time. Robust automation lies at the center of this.
Did you know, up to 70% of an ecommerce brand’s customer queries are common questions that address things like order status, pricing, or refunds? A backlog of these repetitive tickets can severely impact your agents’ ability to respond to customers in a timely manner. With email, for example, response times can swell up to 72 hours.
Thankfully, these frequent requests are precisely the kind that the best ecommerce ticketing systems are able to handle. By successfully taking care of these inquiries through automation, you’re able to free up your support agents to talk to customers about more urgent issues. In addition, it serves as a solid foundation for higher-value actions your customer service software should be taking.
See how Zowie can return 2 hours to each of your agents daily! Learn more
Time to launch and ongoing maintenance are other important factors to consider. An ecommerce customer service software solution can’t be considered effective if it has long onboarding times, or is difficult to maintain.
To cut down on onboarding times you can look for a solution that incorporates ecommerce-specific AI that’s trained to answer the most common (and even brand-specific) customer questions out of the box. Other factors to consider are whether or not it offers full tech stack connectivity, or if you can create complex workflows without coding.
In terms of maintenance, you should measure how your ecommerce customer service software collects, presents, and evaluates data. Agents should have a single dashboard that provides a snapshot of the current state of your customer support. It should also allow you to identify key customer trends that can be used to improve the customer experience.
If any part of this is unorganized or time-consuming to maintain, your agents aren’t necessarily saving time, just reallocating it.
Grow your business
Leading ecommerce customer service software doesn’t stop at answering customer questions or providing meaningful care. Today’s most groundbreaking tools allow your customer support team to generate meaningful contributions to your bottom line. This can be done in a number of ways.
Personalized product recommendations
Personalized product recommendations allow you to better offer customers exactly what they’re looking for. Today’s leading solutions use customer data, to help you suggest products that fit each buyer’s unique needs, increasing your chances of offering something they’ll actually want.
With proactive support, you don’t have to wait for customers to reach out for assistance. Instead, the best modern solutions can identify critical moments along the customer journey, and automatically send a chat to help increase a customer’s chances of finalizing their purchase.
Buying intent detection
Buying intent detection gauges which support tickets are coming from customers already on your site with the highest likelihood of making a purchase. Selecting an ecommerce customer support solution with this feature allows you to decide which agents to deploy based on how likely a customer is to convert.
Altogether, the best solutions can increase your online store’s conversion rate by 15% and boost online sales by 10%, creating true support-driven sales. In today’s increasingly-competitive landscape this could be the difference in hitting your revenue goals.
Software that helps you care, automate, and grow
Finding an ecommerce help desk software that gets the job done doesn’t have to be like searching for a needle in a haystack.
At the end of the day, you need ecommerce customer service software that’s designed to scale with you. Implementing the right solution will help ensure you’re not only effectively meeting your customers’ needs today, but can continue to do so as you grow.