Let’s face it; these days, eCommerce staunchly replaces offline retail businesses across the world. The number of online stores and incidents of switching from offline to the online platform are increasing by leaps and bounds. With this pace, days are not far when brick-and-mortar stores will become a legacy. As many people have already started online purchasing, it is important to manage everything from order placement to delivery of an order. When it comes to online purchase, following tips to improve customers’ shopping experience is of paramount importance. Today, people seem more cautious and eager to get timely delivery of products in a proper manner along with safe payment options. In other words, order fulfillment is something that every retailer has to address while running an online business.
Order fulfillment is not merely a transformation of supply chain system to the effective delivery system. But, it is an ultimate target that all eCommerce companies strive to achieve. As online shopping gains ground, the importance of order fulfillment keeps on increasing. But, still online businesses lack proper practices to enhance order fulfillment. In light of surprisingly unsatisfactory and unpleasant findings regarding an order fulfillment study in Germany, we feel it necessary to jot down tips for online retailers. But firstly, let us have a glimpse on findings of combined study of JDA Software and Centiro:
- About 48 percent customers complained that deliveries often came late
- About 45 percent customers had received a missed delivery card though they were at home to receive an order
- One out of 4 customers complained about delivery of damaged goods
- About 26 percent customers said that they never received the products that they have ordered
It is not that German retailers are newcomers in the world of eCommerce, and customers in other parts of the world are happy with their online retailers. Order fulfillment issues loom large everywhere with an increase in online shopping. We can give many reasons for the same, but instead of thinking about reasons, it is better to exercise the following practical tips to address order fulfillment issues. So, here we are with super six tips for online retailers to improve online shopping experience of customers that in turn retain them and make them loyal to their products or services:
1. Giveaways to gift card- don’t leave any ‘favorites’ untouched
Discount offers, coupons, and freebies are the most sought-after promotional techniques. They certainly enable retailers to improve customers’ shopping experience. Here, retailers need to check the quality of freebies as well as the proper execution of coupons and discount offers.
2. Never compromise with commitment
Customers select retailers on the basis of claims and content given on websites. False claims can attract customers for a while, but as people come to know about the fallacy of claims, they never return to such websites. Retailers should never compromise with any commitment regarding quality, looks, and performance of the said products.
3. Safe delivery is as important as safe payment
Today, most of eCommerce websites offer safe payment gateways, but retailers should keep in mind that safe delivery is also as important as safe payment for improving the shopping experience. Delivery of damaged products should be taken seriously, and the matter should be handled in a way that customers have no regrets for purchasing products from a particular retailer.
4. Repetitive business is always better
Retailers can never treat any customer as ‘one time’ customer. If customers are happy with retailers, they will spread a good word for them and will return to purchase other products from the same retailers. Repetitive business is better in both online and offline businesses. Therefore, retailers should work for offering the best treatment to every customer.
5. After-sales service is important also in online businesses
At times, some online retailers think that we will never meet any customers. Because of such wishful thinking, they don’t consider improving after-sales service. While the reality is, after sales service is more important in online businesses than the same in brick-and-mortar businesses, and plays a major role in making any online business popular.
6. Performance is as important as appearance
Online businesses require both attractive looks of websites and seamless delivery system. eCommerce companies can witness serious consequences if they keep neglecting measures regarding the timely delivery of products without any damage.
In brief, it is fair to mention that retailers’ focus should be on performance and quality of distribution system along with websites’ safety and appearance. Needless to say that the tips mentioned above will certainly improve customers’ online shopping experience.