These days, people are shopping online for just about everything. A recent article in Time magazine declared, “It’s Official: We’re Comfortable Ordering Pizza Online.” With the transition to an online-centered customer experience, it can be difficult to determine just what that is. Even online, the fundamentals of customer service don’t change; it’s still about creating a personal, user-friendly experience that will foster a positive impression and encourage repeat business.
Convenience is the Name of the Game
Ordering and shopping online is all about convenience; being able to place an order in your pajamas anytime, day or night. So, it’s important to play to that strength and make your website easy to use. If your customer has to pick up the phone or go to the bricks and mortar establishment because of an issue with your site, you may lose their business entirely. Creating an online experience where customers can easily find what they want and place their order is key to customer satisfaction. Take some time to familiarize yourself with the fundamentals of eCommerce.
Get Them on the Go
Having an easy-to-use website will allow your customers to place their orders at their convenience, but why stop there? Creating a mobile-friendly version of your website can open many doors (or windows, so to speak), increasing web traffic, order numbers, and profits! Sixty-five million people are now using smartphones and that number is increasing all of the time; it’s a market that shouldn’t be ignored. Recently White Castle (a popular fast food chain) missed the mark when a campaign targeting smartphone users took potential customers to an unoptimized landing page. You can’t expect customers to pinch and zoom to navigate your ordering site. Consumers have come to expect that their favorite retailers and foodservice companies will have sites optimized for mobile devices. And once your site is optimized, you can begin incorporating QR codes into your menus and coupons that take users directly to your site, ready to place an order.
Conventional customer service provided by a bricks and mortar store is all about using interaction to create a positive impression. This may seem like a challenge in an online environment, but communicating with consumers has never been easier. The raging success of social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+ has given businesses in nearly every industry the opportunity to create a rapport with their current and potential customers. Businesses benefit by having a higher rate of interaction with customers and increasing brand identity; and social media provides additional outlets for marketing that are relatively inexpensive. You can use your company social media pages to keep customers informed about menu changes, promotions, and specials.
For some tips and tricks on how to use social media for your business, check out some of our previous blog posts: Social Media Marketing Made Easy, Are You Ready to use our Social Media Features, Make Some Noise, and Pinterest for Beginners.
Extending the customer experience online doesn’t have to be a challenge. By playing to the strengths of the medium you can easily focus on creating a convenient, enjoyable experience.