Honest customer feedback is an eCommerce holy grail. It might seem like a daunting prospect to open up the lines of communication between your store and shoppers, but the benefits are substantial. Shoppers are much more inclined to believe peers over brands. Featuring feedback from real people on your website provides social proof that, in turn, influences visitors to buy. Your store can also employ customer feedback to streamline the user experience.
With these four creative ways to gather eCommerce customer feedback, you’ll have a finger on the pulse of customer opinion, which is an important source of actionable insights for continuously improving your brand.
Live Chat Feature
Nearly half (44 percent) of online shoppers believe the ability to have questions answered by a real person in real time is one of the most important features a website can offer. Live chat is less of a desirable add-on these days; it’s a requirement for competitive eCommerce operations. The most overt use for live chat is guiding customers through the purchasing funnel, whether they have a question about sizing, payment options or anything in between. But savvy brands take notice of where customers encounter hiccups so they can improve user experience. Something as simple as asking customers for feedback at the end of a live chat session will provide key insights.
Conducting eCommerce surveys may seem old school, but this method is tried-and-true. Almost half of shoppers prefer e-mail as a medium for providing positive feedback. Since product reviews are such an important component of establishing social proof and legitimacy for your brand, sending a quick questionnaire to customers via e-mail is a good way to tap into that power and make customers feel heard.
Exactly when you send your follow-up e-mails depends on your industry. If you’re selling eBooks online, following up in a timely manner is fine because there’s no extended delivery window with which to deal. You’ll want to interact with shoppers while the download is still fresh in their minds—within a few days. If you ship internationally or have items on back order, your e-mail should correspond with actual delivery, otherwise the shopper is being asked to rate the buying experience without the fulfillment component.
Social Media Polls
Answering a poll on social media makes online users feel like part of a community. Hosting social media polls is effective for crowd sourcing opinions leading up to an announcement or decision. Say your eBook business releases a free title every month as a promotion to drum up customer loyalty. You could create a Twitter poll asking people which genre they prefer as a Book of the Month. It’s a fun way to peer inside consumers’ minds and bring your store to top of mind.
Dedicated On-Site Feedback
A “contact us” landing page is a staple in eCommerce. It should include both your applicable information — e-mail address, phone number, social media links, etc. — as well as a dedicated space for your customers to leave their questions and comments. Contact pages are an extension of your brand, so you want them to feel uniquely inviting. Get creative with your voice, imagery and calls to action here, so your customers will actually want to chip in their two cents.
Customer feedback is useful for many purposes: crowd sourcing opinions, collecting product reviews to post publicly, answering customer inquiries and identifying problem spots on your website. Use a combination of these four creative ways to gather eCommerce feedback and you’ll benefit from consumer-generated insights.