Your eCommerce website needs to show a potential customer that you are a trusted e-tailer providing the right kind of product, once over this hurdle your visitors may very well turn their attention to your checkout process. But the sale does not stop at the checkout pages.

Customers using your online services for the very first time will possibly feel a bit wary: Will the goods turn up? …Will the item be the correct product and as described? …How long will it take to deliver? …Will my credit card details be stored safely?…

Reassuring customers that they are in safe hands after the transaction has been completed provides peace of mind, eases customer anxiety and generally add value to the transaction.

Here are six things that could be done after checkout to reassure customers.

  1. Thank you website page. Once the payment has been processed online the website could display a nice thank you page.  Something cheerful and on-brand. Include some details on this page to let the customer what happens next, how to access their account and how to get contact you.
  2. Thank you emails. Most of the on-line merchant bank accounts will automatically send a branded receipt to the visitor. They are usually pretty much of a muchness and very basic.  A more friendly email thanking the customer for their order and again reminding them of the next steps and contact details will go a long way.
  3. Keep your promises and if you can’t keep them – get in touch. If you say that you are  going to deliver within 3 days and don’t deliver, your customer is not going to be very happy.  A simple phone call to explain genuine reasons for a delay allows you, as the supplier, to monitor how the customer reacts and identify any additional steps you can put in place to keep them happy – and I’m not just talking about compensation here, sometimes just an alternative delivery arrangement is all that is required.  Either way a personal explanation will go down much better than an email that is read 3 days too late.
  4. Keep customers in the loop. By using either regular email/SMS updates or an online account it is possible to keep customers up to date with their order status.  I have always been terribly impressed with the www.NEXT.co.uk who are able to deliver the next day when items are ordered before 9pm.  My order confirmations always clearly identifies any items that are not in stock along with an expected delivery date, and I am kept up to date throughout the process.  I’m informed when items have been dispatched, in transit and even receive an email to confirm that the item has been delivered.  All useful and all providing me with peace of mind.
  5. Keeping in touch.  Keeping in touch with the customer after the sale will help to keep you on top of mind.  I can honestly say that I have forgotten the name of the website that I have made purchases from in the past (even expensive items!).  Sometimes you need to stand out a little to get noticed and remembered.
  6. Customer satisfaction surveys.  Not all of your customers will take the time to complete a survey but by offering an incentive (free something-or-other) you will increase your changes of receiving some valuable feedback. The golden rule here is to always follow up on bad feedback, there is no point in pumping this data into a database and just focusing on making changes in the future. Instead if you spot an unhappy customer take the opportunity to rectify a situation.

It’s true to say that people will always remember a bad experience, an OK experience is easily forgotten but a truly fabulous experience will keep them coming back and recommending.

Would love to hear your thoughts on the best after sales services that you have received from an online shop?

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