One could argue that customers expect a lot these days. They want a memorable shopping experience, but they also want convenience. In fact, it is the convenience itself that makes for a good experience. Whether you manage a physical store or an online one, ensuring your customers have a convenient experience is key to business survival.
Why convenience matters
The sticking point with convenience is that as any store improves this element of customer service, it automatically sets a precedent. As soon as one retailers offers a new, ultra-convenient way to deliver clothes to the end customer, for example, if the others don’t follow suit, they will fall behind the times quickly. Today’s shoppers don’t have the time or patience for anything less than total convenience.
E-commerce is all about convenience
To suggest that e-commerce stores should offer a convenient shopping service is a bit like saying that food should fill you up. Shoppers choose ecommerce because it is convenient. Traveling from one store to another takes more time than navigating from one website to a different one. If the ecommerce retailer doesn’t have the requisite customer service experience, such as express delivery or click and collect, customers will simply go elsewhere.
That’s why customer experience, in terms of convenience, is arguably even more important for ecommerce than it is for physical stores. How can you make the service your online customers are getting more convenient than the service they would get at another online store? Make sure you have an easy-to-navigate website with excellent search filters and real-time stock levels. You should also offer a range of delivery options at the lowest possible cost to the consumer.
The physical store
In-store media can be used to improve the shopping experience in a physical store, and this includes making it more convenient. Media such as digital signage that can help customers find what they want faster, along with in-store audio messaging alerting customers to sales areas or to less-busy checkouts, can help. Make sure your sales staff have had intensive customer service training as people will remember positive and negative experiences and word of mouth is important. A Cheltenham PR service will be able to talk to you about what your staff will need to know in terms of communicating properly.
An excellent customer experience and convenience are two sides of the same coin. Today’s shoppers, both online and offline, expect both when they shop.