Okay you’ve finally opened your online shop. How exciting! Now all you need is shoppers. Better yet, you need customers, repeat customers! Here are a few tips that will help you earn repeat customers. Some of the tips are no different than if your store were a physical one yet some of are special to online shopping.
1. Be Attentive, Polite and Courteous
Online shopping can be a bit scary. Reassure your shopper you are legit with the utmost customer service. Always, when corresponding with a customer, either over the phone or the Internet, be polite and courteous; be attentive to their needs. It doesn’t matter how many times it seems you’ve been asked the same question, answer it as though you’ve never heard it before. Treat each and every shopper as you’d expect to be treated. And, if needing to get back to a customer, do so in a timely manner. Superior customer service will help lure shoppers back.
Always follow up with your customer feedback. You may receive feedback on one of the many forms of social media, directly, or elsewhere, but whatever the case, always acknowledge it. Take joy when you get complimented but take notice and learn from any negative feedback you may receive. Do not delete negative comments! It may be tempting, but this will only decrease trust in your company. It’s much better to acknowledge and see how you can right the situation.
2. Know Your Market
Know who your buyers are. Promote your product or service by concentrating on that particular market. Let people know about you. Put yourself out there. Use social media as a form of advertising and if blogging write enthusiastically.
Keep in touch with your customers. Use email marketing (newsletters, promotions, specials) and again, social media to remind them who you are. Just be sure not to over do it. You want to be remembered and thought of not be a nuisance.
Make sure your site is easy to navigate. Have it inviting yet simple. A quality e-commerce platform helps to simplify the shopping process. The verbiage should be in easy terms and easily understood. Your return and refund policy needs to be precise and direct. Keep everything simple and to the point.
When offering online discounts, free shipping, two for one specials, etc, again keep it simple and easy to use and navigate. There is nothing more frustrating than a website that’s confusing and difficult to use making purchases difficult. Be user friendly.
4. Offer Free Shipping
Shoppers love free shipping. It’s a great promotional tool especially when your business is just starting up. As your business grows, you can still offer free shipping but it is advised to offer it with a set minimum purchase in order to receive it.
5. Ship Internationally
Since you have an online business it may benefit you to ship not just locally but internationally as well. Being online your store is available world wide; people from all over the globe can view it. Hopefully, by shipping internationally you will gain recognition, repeat business, and increased revenue.
There are stipulations and additional cost associated with international shipping. The delivery time and customs often delay the package a bit, but will make it there. Check with you local post office for rules, regulations, and cost for exact details.
No matter what form your business is, superior customer service and quality products is key to the growth of any business and in getting repeat business. It’s important to let your customers know you appreciate them and value their business. Offer the occasional special promotion. Make them want to purchase again and to spread the word about you.
Cathy West is a freelance writer from California. She is a domestic diva and a physical fitness enthusiast.