In a world of various channels, multiple touch points and limitless data, it should be easy for consumers to get the information and support they need to complete any purchase. But the truth is, it’s not. All too often, sales opportunities are lost, or customer relationships damaged, because shoppers encounter friction when they are trying to get assistance.
To understand exactly what shoppers want from their customer service experiences, and where retailers need to improve their approach, iAdvize surveyed 1,000 UK consumers.
Stage 1 of the shopper journey: detection
Shoppers have never had so much choice when it comes to how, where, when and with whom they make purchases. But rather than making the customer blasé, this choice increases their expectations, and makes them more determined to ensure they are making the right decision.
72% of consumers like to research their purchases thoroughly before buying, to ensure they are getting the exact item they want.
Retailers need to optimise the customer experience right from the first touch point. They need to make it easy for shoppers to find comprehensive product details, or get expert advice when they need it.
1 in 5 consumers want retailers to make it easier to find product information online
Stage 2 of the shopper journey: engagement
Once shoppers have interacted with a retailer (in any channel), the next stage is to engage them during the discovery process.
More often than not, thorough research tends to create as many questions as it does answer. Therefore, the engagement stage is where retailers need to understand their customer’s support needs in even greater detail.
75% of consumers want support during the purchasing journey.
Brands should offer support where and the way the customers are used to in order to be able to detect their best prospects wherever they are online and whenever they need help.
68% of consumers want retailers to respond to their query within 30 minutes
Stage 3 of the shopper journey: selection
When the customer has been engaged and their queries answered, they often require support getting over the line and selecting the exact item they wish to purchase.
Intimate product knowledge is central to supporting the consumer’s decision. However, that help may not always come from retail personnel;
54% of consumers find customer reviews more influential than retailer advice.
The good news for retailers is that consumers are more than happy to lend their voice to their favourite retail brands.
58% of consumers would be willing to work as an advocate for their favourite retailer
Stage 4 of the shopper journey: response
As retailers well know, guiding customers to purchase is just the first step in nurturing a life-long relationship. And interactions with customers following their purchase will often influence whether they come back.
1 in 10 shoppers will contact retailers after they’ve bought something to make a complaint