Customer Experience is everything. It encompasses many different areas of your Shopify store from how it functions, to the products you promote, customer service, marketing and beyond. The experience a customer has while engaging with your brand and store can make all the difference - 57% of online customers have said that they’ve stopped shopping with a merchant because of a bad experience, or they’ve found a competitor with a better one.
Knowing where to start with developing a customer experience strategy can be tricky given that it includes so many different aspects of your store. We’ve put together 8 questions that you should ask yourself about your Shopify store that will help you consider what you should develop as part of your 2021 strategy.
#1 - How well do you know your customers?
The first step in developing a truly great customer experience is understanding who your customers actually are. Use your store data combined with data from your social media and email marketing platforms to put together a profile of your current audience. What is important to this audience? Where are the friction points in your store for them? If you’re looking to expand into a new audience in 2021, then do research into what makes this customer set engage with a new brand.
#2 - Is it easy to navigate your store?
You want both new and repeat customers to be able to find items and information on your store as easily as possible. A big factor in them being able to do that is your site navigation - this includes both your top menu navigation as well as your catalog. Are products categorized in a way that would make sense to a brand new customer? Where is your FAQ page displayed? Is your homepage too cluttered?
#3 - Have you optimized your checkout process?
Your customer has found a product they love and it’s time to checkout, but what does that checkout process look like? Look at factors like how long the process takes, and how many steps there are to get from clicking “Checkout” to when their order is confirmed. Are there any points of friction in this process that may frustrate a customer and lead to an abandoned cart? Consider options such as express checkout options on product pages to speed, and what payment methods you offer.
#4 - Is your customer care thorough, timely, and efficient?
Customer care is a crucial part of the customer experience. Whether that’s wanting an update on an order, needing additional information on shipping times, or initiating a return. There are many issues a customer may need help with, and having efficient and timely customer service is vital to ensuring the customer remains satisfied and therefore loyal. Consider what your customer care process currently looks like and where you could possibly speed things up. This might include the use of automation apps, developing your FAQ page, or creating new customer care workflow for your team.
#5 - Where are the friction points in your fulfillment process?
Customers expect your fulfillment process to be prompt, so you need to make sure it flows efficiently from the point an order comes in to when it arrives in the customer’s hands. You’ll want to look at the following:
- What is the timeframe from when the order is placed to when it is processed and picked by your team?
- How long do your different shipping methods take? Are you able to offer free shipping in any circumstances? (e.g. order spend threshold)
- Are you able to offer pick-up or local delivery?
- How can a customer track their order? How detailed is this tracking information?
Look also at who your shipping partners are and choose to work with those who have positive ratings and customer opinions. Using partners who have a bad reputation for fulfillment can have a negative impact on your customers’ perception of your store.
Bonus - Check out our app Order Lookup to help with both your customer care and fulfillment process.
#6 - Are you making the most of social proof?
Social proof is the key to fostering trust between your potential customers and your store.
We’ve covered this topic in more detail in a previous article, where we cited that 86% of consumers are more likely to buy a product if they see positive reviews on a store’s homepage. Social proof includes not only product reviews, but also influencer marketing, user generated content, and external websites like blogs and industry specific news sites. If you aren’t already utilizing social proof to boost your Shopify store then make it a priority in 2021.
#7 - Is your store optimized for mobile?
Mobile commerce is a big deal, and ensuring your store is optimized for smartphone shopping is important. There’s a big difference too between mobile responsive and a mobile-first approach to ecommerce, so deciding which will benefit your customer experience more is something to consider. Whilst many people in the world of ecommerce talk about the importance of mobile, you should also look at your own data. How many customers are shopping with your store using mobile, compared to the benchmark for your niche? If you’re falling behind, it might be time to look at optimizing your store.
#8 - Are you creating engaging, educational content?
This applies not only to social media, but also to your email marketing and any additional content you create such as blogs and videos. The content you create should give your audience something more than just a nice story or photo to look at; it needs to engage them. You should use your marketing platforms to educate your audience about your products and brand so that they can better understand them and make a more informed purchasing decision.
Giving your customers an amazing experience will build trust, foster loyalty, and develop a positive perception of your Shopify store. As more competitors develop their online offering, it’s important now more than ever to develop a customer experience strategy. Asking these questions now will help you to consider what areas of your store are doing well in this area, and which need development in the year ahead.