7 Most Common e-Commerce Customer Service Mistakes

With over 2.14 billion digital buyers worldwide, e-commerce has recently become one of the biggest business trends. As a consequence, more people than ever before are making a rapid transition to online shopping. 

While this can mean good news for e-commerce stores, it also means that there’s work to be done as the online business space is gradually becoming much more competitive.

Proper measures have to be put in place to ensure that your customers are satisfied with the quality of your services, as failing to do so could cause them to go to your competitors.

Research has also shown that 93% of customers are likely to repeat purchases with companies offering excellent customer service. This clearly shows customer service’s major role in the customers' decision-making process.

High-quality customer service in e-commerce has many benefits, ranging from increased sales to brand loyalty, and greater visibility, among others. However, you can only enjoy these benefits if you put in the work necessary to ensure your customer service is top-notch. 

And one of the best ways of kicking off that process is to make sure you avoid some of the most common e-commerce customer service pitfalls. Below are some e-commerce customer service mistakes to watch out for.

1. Overpromising and under delivering

Making promises you do not intend to keep is simply cutting your nose to spite your face. How do you think your customers will react if they buy your product or service based on your promises, only to find they weren't true?

Remember, it's never a good idea to force a sale. Keep true to what you can realistically do, go above and beyond to satisfy your customers' needs, and you'll amass a following of loyal customers in no time. 

2. Lack of an active and responsive live chat

Imagine stopping by a website where you hope to make a purchase. Maybe you have a few qualifying questions, so you go to ask the team and find no live chat. Instead, you have to send a mail and wait forever to even get a response. Would you wait? 

Giosg live chat is a quick, convenient, and reliable way for your customers to get in touch with you in real-time. Aside from being a tool that facilitates communication, live chat also increases your chances of turning a prospect into a returning customer, builds stronger customer relationships, and increases customer engagement.

Research has shown that around 73% of customers prefer communicating via live chat. That alone should convince you to either incorporate or improve live chat on your website.

3. Inadequate training for support agents

Customers nowadays don't have much patience to spare and rely on your support agents to solve their problems quickly and efficiently. If they can't do that, frustration sets in. After all, incompetence on any level is a red flag.

If you don't want to lose customers, you need to invest your resources in proper employee training. Or alternatively, handing appropriate recognition awards to your employees is also a great idea to boost their productivity in customer support.

Your support agents must have a good grasp of soft skills like communication, just as much as technical skills relevant to their company role. Ensure your agents possess all the skills they need to satisfy your customers' desires, and your conversion rates are sure to grow. 

4. Taking too long to respond

Thanks to attention spans falling globally, 90% of customers expect an immediate response, and 60% define “immediate” as 10 minutes or less. Taking too long to respond to direct messages, emails, or calls can be catastrophic for your bottom line as it causes massive customer churn

Want to avoid that? Make sure to check all your communication channels frequently for new messages so no customer gets left behind. Create customized call queues for your call center to direct clients to the most qualified available agents and shorten their wait times.

The bottom line is, always be available to deal with customer questions and problems, and they'll definitely stick with your brand.

5. Arguing with customers

Regardless of how angry or rude a customer is, you should never argue with them. People react best to an empathetic approach and most often only desire to be understood. Getting into a confrontation with them will only make things worse and likely cause you to lose their patronage. 

Even if they're in the wrong, try to view things from their perspective, respectfully disagree where necessary, and apologize for any possible harm done. This should be enough to appease them and give you the chance to solve their issue and change their mind about you.

Pull this off successfully, and you'll have a customer for life. 

6. Ignoring social media

Having a social media presence is important, but paying attention to your brand image is even more important. Social media is a great way to improve the visibility of your business. But if you neglect it, people's perception of your brand will quickly fall. 

To prevent that from happening, ensure that your brand messaging on social media is always consistent and reply to positive and negative comments as quickly as possible. Just engaging your customers can make a huge difference for your business in the long run. It also pays to have a consistent brand image. Whether in font logos or in captions, consistency is key to an engaging social media following.

7. Not listening to customers

Customer service can get quite repetitive, especially when you answer the same questions repeatedly. This can cause agents to zone out and stop paying attention to what the people are saying, often leading to mistakes and misunderstandings. 

E-commerce customer service mistakes might seem negligible, but they can cause a huge loss if not addressed. Keeping your customers satisfied even in the little things makes the difference and keeps them loyal to your brand.

Listening to customers goes beyond keeping quiet, and you need to listen actively to give appropriate and helpful answers. If people figure out you're not really paying attention, they'll quickly grow frustrated and likely seek out a different company to meet their needs.

Author´s Bio

Churchill runs Supergraph, a content agency that helps the top 1% of startups produce content that's backed by data.