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Optimizing customer experience online

Providing a fulfilling and satisfying customer experience can be the difference between success and failure for an ecommerce store. Such stores rely heavily on the user-friendliness of their website to ensure conversions. No matter how superior the products, a terrible shopping experience online is bound to turn customers away, just as indifferent or poor customer service would in a physical environment.

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Optimizing customer experience online

  1. 1. Optimizing Customer Experience Online Providing a fulfilling and satisfying customer experience can be the difference between success and failure for an ecommerce store.Such stores relyheavily on the user-friendliness oftheir website to ensure conversions.No matter how superior the products,a terrible shopping experience online is bound to turn customers away,justas indifferentor poor customer service would in a physical environment.For an online store,it is that much harder to please people withoutmeeting them physically.Therefore,an ecommerce companymustmake sure itadheres to the “3-I” practice to keep up with customer needs and deliver a great shopping experience:  Identify: There are two major items thatan ecommerce store needs to identify on its website – where the greatest number ofdropped visitors is,and where visitors end up spending excess time in handling a task.To do this, the ecommerce store needs to investin a data collection and analysis tool thatcan track their customers’ every action.By acquiring this information,the ecommerce business can identifythe parts of its website that need to be spruced to lower drop rates and that need to be simplified to decrease time spentthere. Ex: The checkouttime on the ecommerce site maybe long,which is causing customers to abandon their carts.  Innovate: Once the ecommerce business identifies the differentparts of the website thatcan be improved on, it nee ds to come up with alternatives to the currentinefficientor ineffective process.This is where the store can shine using new and simple methods ofmaking their customers’ experience uniquelywonderful. Ex: See Amazon’s 1-click ordering and perhaps make a 1-click cart ordering option,which retains the ‘Add to cart’ feature, but removes the need to enter personal,shipping and paymentinformation; removes the check out process.  Implement: When it comes to implementing the innovations there are two stages involved – test run and final implementation.Once the ecommerce business has come up with interesting and unique ideas thatwill improve the customer’s experience,they need to be tested on real customers.A/B testing,which involves testing two approaches simultaneouslyby having each option appear to alternative customers and identifying which is more user-friendly,has proved to be an invaluable tool on this front. This allows the decision makers to understand which idea amongstits peers,is mosteffective in increasing visitor retention and improving conversion rates.The business can then implementthe innovation that was mostsuccessful in achieving the objective. Ex: Test1-click ordering against1-click cart ordering to see which is better received by customers,and then implementthatone. While implementing the “3-I” practice do remember thatit is not a one-shotprocess,buta cyclical one that must be carried out recurrently to ensure visitors remain loyal to your business. Also see more info @