The Importance of Online Reviews

The Importance of Online Reviews

Every company needs an outside view. You can communicate customer satisfaction with a purchase through an email. But more often you are going to identify the purchase experience through online reviews. And you should be prepared that other buyers will read them as well. Online reviews have become very popular among buyers.

According to recent studies:

  • 91% of customers occasionally read online reviews
  • 84% of customers believe them as personal recommendations
  • 68% of customers form an opinion about your e-shop after reading 1-6 reviews

Receiving public reviews can make you feel uncomfortable but you need them. Here’s why online reviews are crucial to your business:

Positive reviews increase sales. A well-written online review from a satisfied customer is priceless. It can eliminate any doubts that a new customer may have about an e-shop or product. New customers rather buy a product somewhere where it’s well-rated.

You will understand your customers better. With a feedback from your customer you will be able to identify what’s really important.

Raise awareness of your e-shop. Online reviews can be a great part of your marketing strategy.

They give your customers chance to speak, they build a stronger relationship and increase their loyalty. Only few customers will give you a feedback. Other customers just leave your e-shop. You should go through all reviews and try to make innovations based on them.

Online reviews – an incentive for other customers to write a review. New researches done by psychologists show that so-called crowd behavior is also reflected in the online world. Customers are more likely to write an online review if there are more reviews about your e-shop.

Nowadays, tracking online reviews is not enough. You should respond to every review that occurs to show your customers that you care. The positive thing about online reviews is, that not every negative online review is a bad thing and is going to harm your company. You should turn it into your advantage – respond to every online review and try to do the best to improve your services.

Karolína Alvaradová – creates a perfect return process at Retino

Positive Customer Service Communication

Positive Customer Service Communication

Communication with customers is a cornerstone of every successful business. Every situation requires different actions, but you should always keep in mind that the thing you want to achieve is a satisfied customer.

You have several ways to make your customer more relaxed and pleased – by providing great return policy, offering discounts or free gifts with a purchase. However, one thing is clear – when you communicate with your customers politely and in a friendly way you will win their hearts. By words you can create a strong relationship with them, get their loyalty and make them come back.

Sometimes it is hard to think positively when your customers are negative from the beginning. However, they are still your customers and they might want to spend some money with you. Try to learn how to think positively.

There are some phrases that a positive communication doesn’t include.  Customer service often uses a phrase: “We can’t do that”. Is that really true? What about saying: “We can try to solve that problem”. The important thing is to try to think positively. Another phrase: “It is not available right now”. Your customer has chosen a product and he doesn’t want to hear that after all he can’t get it. Try to make the situation at least a little bit more optimistic. Rephrase the sentence and say: “This product will be available within 2 weeks, I’ll let you know as soon as the product gets here.”

Sometimes only using different sentences can help your customer feel more secure and happy. Try to learn it by checking your last emails. Rewrite all of your negative words (don’t, won’t, can’t). Listen to your customers– you will identify negative speech.

It may take a while for you to start communicating differently, but it is worth it. It has been proven that positive communication makes your customers more loyal and pleased. And remember – it is six times more expensive to get a new customer than to keep an existing one.

Karolína Alvaradová – creates a perfect return process at Retino

The Perfect Return Policy

The Perfect Return Policy

Even though the online shopping is becoming more popular, customers still feel the risk of returning goods. 2/3 of buyers read terms and conditions before confirming the order. The terms and conditions should be a simple document that is easy for your customer to understand.

According to many studies, a good customer aftercare service is a reason why a customer returns to an e-shop. Creating an effective return policy increases revenue and attracts more customers. Here are some tips that make returns perfect.

Don’t hide your return policy. Display the “how to return goods” link on the main menu so your customers don’t have to go through the whole terms and conditions document. If a customer is not 100% sure about a purchase this will affect him.

Pay for the return shipping costs. Almost 80% of customers want an e-shop to pay for the return postage. Many researches show that a customer who is happy with the return process delivers significantly higher sales in the long term.

Shout about your great return policy. Don’t be afraid to mention it directly on the main page. Let every customer know that you offer something more.

Attach return instructions with a customer’s order. He doesn’t have to search for the instructions, it takes less time – satisfaction on both sides.

Speed up your communication with customers. Inform your customers about the return status in time, so they don’t need to worry about their money. A good communication with customers is one of the most important factors for the next purchase.

Let the customers give you a feedback. If you find out what customers want and create innovations based on their needs, they will have no reason to switch to competitors.

Karolína Alvaradová – creates a perfect return process at Retino

How to Write Message Templates which Don’t Make You Sound Like a Robot

How to Write Message Templates which Don’t Make You Sound Like a Robot

More than 70% of customers prefer email communication while buying things online. If they don’t get a quick response, they will switch to another e-shop. It is almost impossible to write manually to every customer. You have to think about every single email and it is also risky – you may easily forget something or you’re going to make a typo. For an effective email communication – message templates are important.

A confirmation email about receiving customers order is a great example where you can use the automatic sending of your message templates. You can also use automated emails if you want to wish your customer a happy birthday or show him the latest product offer. Message templates make life easier for you but they have to be well-written. A customer doesn’t want to communicate with a robot. We’ve prepared a few simple tricks for you to make your prewritten emails sound more natural.

Write emails in your brand voice. Is your marketing communication somehow specific? Your emails should sound like that as well. Your customer service and your marketing team must work together. Your emails will look more trustworthy.

Use pronouns. Words like you, yours, we etc. will create a relationship between the sender and recipient. Communication looks more personal.

Use plain language. Use words of everyday life and write shorter sentences. Communication will sound friendlier and natural.

Highlight important words. If a customer just wants to get quickly through an email, it is much easier for him if the words are highlighted. Not to mention that the email looks better. A long e-mail containing a lot of information is useless – the customer is not going to read it.

Message templates themselves don’t make you sound like a robot. If they are well-written, the customer won’t see the difference and you will save your time.

Karolína Alvaradová – creates a perfect return process at Retino

5 Reasons Why Customer Feedback Matters

5 Reasons Why Customer Feedback Matters

Customer feedback is a guide on how to improve your business. It can help you increase your sales and you’ll be able to address the customer’s needs.

If a customer provides feedback, it means that he is willing to spend some time to give you a tip how you can improve, which is a sign that he has a relationship with your e-shop. Decisions on innovations based on customer’s tips often mean success for both sides.

Customer feedback helps to improve your services and products. The rating gives you an outside opinion. Retailers often deal with trifles that do not matter to their customers. They waste time on innovations that do not influence their sales at all.

Increases customer retention. A satisfied customer returns. If you find out what your customers want and create innovations based on their needs, they will have no reason to switch to competitors.

Gives you information about your customer care service. A good communication experience is one of the most important factors for your customer’s next purchase. A good customer center needs to work reliably, quickly and willingly.

Helps you find out trends among your competitors. You don’t want your customer to switch to the competition. Customer feedback can give you a general view of services provided by other companies and what may affect the customer to buy goods somewhere else.

By asking a customer you show that your e-shop cares. The customer sees that his opinion matters and his relationship to your e-shop might strengthen.

Karolína Alvaradová – creates a perfect return process at Retino

Pavlína Louženská: Customer aftercare service as a key to success.

Pavlína Louženská: Customer aftercare service as a key to success.

It is not easy to stand out from a crowd of competitors, especially when you consider how big the eCommerce market is. A key is to concentrate on the customer needs and provide them a perfect sales and aftercare service. According to Pavlína Louženská from 2FRESH (also an ex-CMO at ZOOT), great aftercare will soon be a standard to keep your business running.

Pavlína was interviewed by the founder of Retino, Petr Boroš.

What are the key success factors of online shops today?

A personal communication has always been an advantage of smaller players. Amazon will always provide better automated recommendations, but small players can compete with the face to face experience, which respects the local tastes and needs. These are the brands you create a relationship with and you remain loyal to.

Let’s talk about user experience and shopping convenience. It seems to be the number one topic for online shops. Why?

As the Czech eCommerce market grows, you need more sophisticated methods to win over your competitors. And so the e-shops are turning from transaction platforms into shopping experience companies. To differentiate and establish a relationship is the only way to create a great business.

Which stores do you think do this exceptionally well and why?

Martinus, VašeČočky or ZOOT. These stores are great inspiration. In addition to a perfect customer service, you can always expect something more. The whole buying process must be a great experience that a today’s customer demands.

Many western online shops have turned the aftercare service into a marketing tool. They offer significantly longer return periods than the law requires and pay for a return shipping. Some Czech e-shops provide similar services but it’s still not the general baseline. Do you expect that more Czech e-shops will follow this trend in the future?

Definitely. Bigger foreign players just like Amazon or Zalando are entering the Czech market soon and there is also a pressure of local competition and higher advertising prices. You will have to concentrate on the See and Care stage, from the well-known framework “See Think Do Care”. It won’t be possible to compete on the market only with the PPC advertising. A customer aftercare service will be soon a key to success.

A customer aftercare service will be soon a key to success.

What would be your advice for online shops to stay successful in the future?

Integrating online and offline marketing successfully is the way to make your customers loyal. Magazines, events or showrooms combined with a strong personalized digital advertising is a way to success. Just be sure that the channels work together, not separately.

In the beginning there must be a solid foundation based on customer needs. If you’re not willing to listen to your customers and finding out their needs, you shouldn’t enter the market. That’s why I hope that the future researches will become our guides how to approach customer experience.

Thank you for the interview, Pavlína!

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For Czech speakers, we recommend a great lecture on Innovations from this year’s Webexpo, from Pavlína Louženská and Lukáš Pitter.

The Importance of Effective Communication with Consumers

The Importance of Effective Communication with Consumers

Communication in the return process starts when you write your terms and conditions. If they are simple and do not discourage your customers, the customers are likely to continue shopping. As a result you can establish a deeper relationship with them. Good communication is the key to retaining your customers.

When a customer chooses to return a product he needs to reconnect with their e-shop.  An effective communication process with the customer at this stage of purchase is important to reduce uncertainty and maintain loyalty to your e-shop. 52% of customers are likely to go somewhere else to get their products if they have a poor customer center experience.

Customers expect simple and seamless communication. They don’t want to remind the e-shop about their problem and want the return process to be resolved quickly. 71% of customers expect to receive a response on returned goods within 2 days. More than a half of these customers expect a response within 1 day.

When checking online reviews, note how often your customers refer to a customer service. Their experience reflects negatively or positively on the e-shop. It is one of the main factors that affects the next purchase.

All it takes is for one customer to be neglected. More than 50% of customers with poor customer center experience share it with more than 5 people. 88% of customers are influenced by reviews of the quality of customer service.  The key feature of your e-shop is the way how you communicate.

Karolína Alvaradová – creates a perfect return process at Retino

Why a Good Return Policy Is Important For Retailers

Why a Good Return Policy Is Important For Retailers

For 91% of customers, a return process is an important factor when making a decision about future purchases. If the process is difficult for them, they won’t return back. 

The risk of shopping via the internet is that a customer can’t touch the product and may have to return it. The return process is an unpleasant thing, and if the process is problematic, the customer might think of purchasing goods at some other retailer. On the other hand, if the customer is satisfied with the process, for example, he is reimbursed for returning postage charges, he will spend from 158% to 457% more in the next two years. 

E-shops intuitively try to minimize the number of returns, yet western markets show that returns on the other hand are increasing. Therefore the right strategy is to face the problem and try to make the return process efficient and keep the customer satisfied. A simple return process can increase customer confidence and ensure that they will be willing to order more products in the future. Simplifying the customer’s return can be approached in several ways. We’re going to dig deeper into this topic in the future, in the meantime the following insights should be considered:

  • 60% of customers read your terms and conditions before buying a product. When they are written poorly, the customers won’t buy anything.
  • 81% of customers want the company to pay for their return postage. 
  • Only 10% of customers don’t read online reviews.
  • 54% of consumers think a good review is an incentive to visit your website.

Many Czech e-shops still don’t see return policies as a key to increase their revenue. However, with growing competition, it is only a matter of time when it will become necessary to take further steps to maintain the loyalty of our customers.

Karolína Alvaradová – creates a perfect return process at Retino