christmas-present.jpgYour website visitors expect a great experience all year round. As Christmas draws closer though, the experience and every element contributing to it becomes even more important. Even the least savvy eCommerce shoppers are continuously analysing your website and customer service performance in the final quarter of the year.

For many people, the buying decision is actually influenced by their level of customer satisfaction. The interactions that they have with your website and your representatives shape their buying decisions. Their buying decisions at Christmas and their buying decisions for the whole of next year.

True website optimisation is about far more than conversions. It’s not just the colour of a CTA or the wording of product descriptions, it’s the whole customer experience.

The whole customer experience includes: product advice, post sales service, response times, UX design, payment options, shipping costs and more.

Take a look at Amazon. Amazon sold a whopping 5 billion items in 2014 and that wasn’t through product selection, price competition or optimised website design alone. Free shipping, real user reviews, one-click checkout and easy returns all contributed.

In fact, 43% of UK and US eCommerce decision makers have said that a key consequence of a suboptimal digital customer experience was the effect it had on their digital conversion rates.

 

Consumers expect a great experience all year round. As Christmas approaches there is an even greater need for it though. Those that aren’t as fussed about speedy service or delivery costs the rest of the year, suddenly are once we approach the holiday season.

Consumers’ stress levels are rising as they try to balance: finding the perfect present for everyone, attending all of their holiday celebrations and managing their finances. Yet consumers aren’t the only ones struggling.

Businesses can also struggle to deliver on their promises as demand for their products and services grow. Take Black Friday 2014, when multiple retailers’ websites crashed. Currys, Tesco, Argos, PC World, GAME and Boots all faced technical difficulties in the shopping frenzy.

Customer service departments and servers can be pushed to their limits.

Whilst the predicted largest shopping day of this year has already passed (Black Friday 2015), UK consumers are still expected to spend thousands of millions of pounds in the remaining noteworthy calendar days.


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All year round you should be looking for ways to improve your customer experience. Your servers and website should provide a consistent, high standard of service. You don’t want a traffic spike to crash your website or poor usability to cause abandonment.

Choose a reliable web host or prepare your in-house servers for traffic spikes at key dates throughout the year. Make your website mobile friendly. Ensure that website visitors have the tools to navigate your website easily. Provide shoppers with compelling product descriptions and useful product photos. Provide social proof to turn buying choices into easier decisions.

You should also be studying your current visitors’ behaviour through your website analytics. If you have high exit rates on your search pages then you must either not stock the right products or be making it hard for shoppers to find them on your website. If you have high basket abandonment on your payments page, are customers being hit with inexplicable messages or payment gateway failures?

 

Solve these basic problems with your website and you will lose far less potential customers from small experience glitches. Push your customer experience up to an even higher level and not only will you lose less customers but you’ll actually increase conversion.

Better customer experience means making sure that your customers have everything that they need to have a happy Christmas. If you’re already providing the right products, you need to make sure that everything else is seamless. And if something does go wrong, you need to make sure that someone is there to help shoppers immediately.

By providing a customer satisfaction rating of 98% (compared to the global average of 86.63%), our live chat agents are able to increase conversion of those that chat by 500%. How? Our agents ensure that those that chat have an outstanding experience, at any time of year. They help find the perfect product to buy, offer support as soon as a customer sees an error message and provides any product or service information the customer may need. Our agents do all of this in a short period of time; our first response time is 29 seconds on average (compared to the global average of 58 seconds) and our average time to reply for all subsequent messages is 32 seconds.

Fixing issues with your current customer experience will increase conversions now and during the busiest shopping period of the year.


Is your website ready for the holiday rush? If not, perhaps now or at least the new year is the time to fix it.

We know that live chat can fix a wide array of customer problems and leave them satisfied with their shopping experience, but we admit that it can’t solve everything. If a website is poorly designed then, unfortunately, many consumers are going to have a bad experience. If your website is not hosted on a reliable server, then your customers may experience a blackout. Website optimisation is about more than conversion; the whole customer experience is about more than an awesome support team.

That’s why we study the website data of our clients on a regular basis. We look for ways in which live chat can be used to improve customer experience and increase conversion. We also advise our client on the ways in which they could make alterations to their website, to again increase satisfaction and conversions.

Choosing The Chat Shop is about far more than adding a new piece of technology and an amazing team of agents to your website.

 

Want to find out more about how we can deliver an outstanding customer experience for your website visitors? Read about our Customer Service programme here