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Black Friday is Coming. Is your Customer Service Ready?

Black Friday SalesPhoto by bruce mars from Pexels

Today, if we want to explain what Black Friday is with a single word we would say "discounts", because many stores and eCommerce offer big discounts on many products, allowing customers to buy at very convenient prices. But what about Customer Care in these crazy days?

The Black Friday Phenomenon

Black Friday is the name given to the shopping day after Thanksgiving and it comes from the volume of traffic accidents that customers caused, sometimes ending up with violence.

With 30% growth on 2018 sales predicted, and promotions extending days and weeks earlier into November, the shopping marathon is set to be bigger than ever in 2019. 

Keeping the pace of this crazy phenomenon and standing out on the terrible Black Friday all boils down to the retail basics.

By creating a unique Customer Experience that stands out amongst the multitude of competitors, brands will stay relevant to consumers even when the battle for the best discount will be at its peak. The main rule to follow here is, as Gartner suggests, to differentiate. By generating a distinctive Customer Experience, which is simple, reliable, and moreover efficient, retailers can rely on the success of the event.

Amazon: the King of Black Friday
Amazon confirms as the undisputed king of Black Friday also this year, with its very wide campaign of offers and promotions. In fact, 8 out of 10 people in Italy declare that they will buy one or more products in the marketplace. A triumph (announced) for the American brand, which clearly exceeds not only the third-party sites and/or apps specializing in the product category, but also and above all the brand's eShops.

As for Customer Care, Amazon remains firmly reliable and accurate: from assistance emails to the confirmation of receipt of the package, to the numerous Q&A dedicated to each product and Live assistance services, available at almost every hour and in every language. The e-commerce giant seems not to miss a beat even in the Black week; we are looking forward to the peak day!

A lot of Discounts Means a lot of Issues

According to researches almost half of the digital consumers would abandon their cart if they received an error message upon checkout that prevented them from completing their purchase online.

Retailers must be really focused on providing a high level of Customer Support and meeting consumers expectation, no lower than usual in these "black" days; in fact, they will move to another brand in a second if there is an issue.

A Quantum Metric research revealed that a slow online shopping experience will drive shoppers to another retailer, also because it came out that a lot of people actually make shopping during work time.

Over one in three (36%) Black Friday/Cyber Monday shoppers said a slow browsing experience will lead them to shop elsewhere, and even a six-second load time delay, regardless of the circumstance, may reduce conversion success by half.

Putting it differently, the focus in these days is less about shopping and more about how Customer Experience is managed, and particularly for the crossing from eCommerce to in-store, when for example customers buy online and then call with a question about a return and then show up in-store to pick up a new item.

Maximize your eCommerce Customer Service

The promotional aspects are typically top of mind for retailers as we go into campaigns, promotional emails, discount codes, but the customer journey and experience are equally important. Very often what the customer need is a simple experience: aspects like site navigation, easy search and discoverability, live support availability or self-service area are measures that can help make the customer’s experience effortless.

Finally, here are some of the must-have features that multichannel platforms, like Vivocha, offer to provide the most complete digital assistance in these "black days": 

• live chat: If you run an eCommerce store and you’re not using live chat, prepare to be surprised by everything it can offer. Providing Live Chat support can help your customers in every step of their journey, from sales to proactive selling, to questions about invoices and shipping.

• FAQ and knowledge base: Knowledge bases can be set up for internal or external use and are valuable, scalable customer service tools. In addition, a self-service portal is less expensive and often customers prefer it. It is proven that customers try to find answers to their questions by themselves before contacting the assistance; this frees up agents for more complex issues that require 1:1 support.

• Social Media: Customer service over social media is becoming increasingly important. In fact, you should provide customer service through them. Why? Because that’s what your customers expect!

Customer service is a fundamental part of your eCommerce business. While some actions to take care of your customer is really simple, others take more time and effort, but it's worth it: by investing in your customer service, you’ll increase long-term loyalty and the lifetime value of your customers.

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Topics: customer service, Next generation customer iteraction, self-service, millennials, new trends, ecommerce

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