Building brand loyalty in eCommerce is no longer only about offering the finest products at the lowest costs. These days, it is also about providing a positive delivery experience by giving the best experiences as you keep and track eCommerce orders. One of the most challenging aspects of the fulfillment process to manage appropriately is the delivery process. There are address errors, unexpected delays, and the peril of not receiving a package. All of these things may put a wrench in the works. It can also result in your client becoming unhappy and opting to buy somewhere else.
When a client clicks the “Order now” button, some businesses may incorrectly believe that their connection with the buyers has come to an end. However, this is far from the case. While placing an order may seem like the last step, it is the beginning of the post-purchase phase that is equally vital.
Therefore, real-time eCommerce order tracking is highly regarded as a component of the whole purchasing experience on an equal footing. More than 98% of consumers believe that the order delivery process affects brand loyalty, and 73% of customers anticipate it across all touchpoints.
Understanding eCommerce Order Tracking
Order tracking in eCommerce is the process of handling and monitoring orders placed online. It is about providing consumers with order progress information in real-time. Using it, they can determine when they should expect their purchase to arrive, and where it is precisely at that particular time. It can keep consumers informed of any potential delays.
Even if an order arrives on schedule, there is no assurance that it will not encounter any difficulties along the way. Even when everything is going according to plan, many anxious consumers will continue to bombard companies with questions about order status updates. Proper order tracking for your eCommerce business will enable you to keep track of all of your online orders and shipments. It allows you to communicate the order status to your consumers at any time. As you keep and track eCommerce orders, it comprises shipment tracking, anticipated delivery dates, and regular updates on the order progress. Together, these elements contribute significantly to the customer experience. It informs purchasers of what to anticipate from their order and alerting them to any delays.
How To Provide The Best eCommerce Order Tracking Experience
Allow customers to track orders directly
To keep and track eCommerce orders, you may use mobile apps and particular carrier websites. There is, however, another manner in which order tracking can give your company a step ahead of the competition, especially given how e-commerce is all about ease and speed these days. It’s the process of adding an order tracking page directly to your website.
By providing this option, consumers will not be required to go the additional mile and seek information somewhere else rather than at your website. Not only can it save them time, but it may also avoid misunderstanding. Likewise, it improves their overall experience with your brand. To say nothing of the fact that it provides yet another incentive for them to visit your website. There, you can attempt to capture their interest with some new offers.
Make order tracking option easy to spot
If you have an online shop, having an order tracking function is a significant asset. Therefore, make sure it receives enough credit for having one by making it accessible on your website.
Avoid hiding it under other categories. It will make consumers work just a little more than they would want and anticipate being required to do. Ensure that the order tracking page is in a suitable location. Make it simple to locate to avoid needless irritation or prevent abandoning it entirely at the end, leading to customer support issues. It is preferable to put your order tracking page in the top right corner of your website’s header. Still, it may also be placed in the footer or as a separate item in the page’s navigation menu if necessary.
Include parcel tracking information in the confirmation email
Unfortunately, not all consumers will return to your store’s or the couriers’ website to find out where their parcels are. Clicking on a direct link to order tracking is an appreciated gesture from customers. For this reason, you should never fail to provide clear instructions on how to monitor orders in your purchase confirmation emails. Furthermore, if they were previously unaware of such a feature, it would inform them that order tracking is accessible when shopping at your establishment.
Always give estimated delivery dates
The anticipated delivery date is one of the essential items that a consumer wants to see when making an online purchase, along with the shipping charges. Customers’ choice to continue to the checkout or not to finish their purchase if there are these estimates may directly influence no indication of it elsewhere. That is particularly essential during the Christmas shopping season when customers anticipate presents to arrive by a specific date. Your business may profit by displaying the estimated delivery time, enabling consumers to manage their schedules better.
Use automated notification
When it comes to ordering status updates, automating any process is your best ally. It is one of those procedures that can and should be automated for the sake of both parties’ comfort and convenience. Sending automatic order status alerts to your consumers may help you save money on extra resources while improving your company’s overall experience.
This kind of communication often includes confirmation emails, issued immediately after a client makes an order). It should also have information regarding changes to the order’s status, for example, delivery of the item by the carrier). Reflect potential delays, and the delivery of the product itself. Customers will remain calm and informed with automated order status alerts. You can maintain or even increase their enthusiasm every time your store’s name shows on their screen.
Ways to Find The Best eCommerce Order Tracking System
To enjoy the full advantages of making an effort to track and monitor your eCommerce orders, you must understand what features you should seek in an order monitoring system. They must contain the following:
1. Customization options
There are many third parties involve in the order fulfillment and shipping process, whether warehouses, 3PLs, or parcel carriers. That is not uncommon in the eCommerce industry. However, the idea of unidentified partners handling their purchases may create uncertainty and worry in customers. Look for a system that can offer you customization options and make it more personalized for customers.
2. Integration with major eCommerce platforms
Because a tracking tool that is incompatible with your online shop makes it challenging to update orders efficiently, use an in-tune tracking service. When your tracking software is integrated with an eCommerce platform, it will immediately update your shop and the customer with the necessary information. It can include shipment notifications and delivery information as soon as the purchase is complete. That eliminates the need for merchants to do manual data transfers. This process usually results in alerts not being delivered in a timely way. Mostly it happens if you have numerous selling channels.
3. Ability to set triggers for notifications
It is wasteful and time-consuming for your customer service representatives to constantly review orders to determine whether they have progressed to the next step. With automated tracking software, you may inform customers automatically at suitable milestones in the order fulfillment and shipping process. You’ll have information when an order has shipped or been placed in the “out for delivery” status. That significantly simplifies your post-purchase customer service. It frees up your company’s resources to devote more attention to the more challenging aspects of your fulfillment process.
In most cases, repeat consumers cost less than one-time customers. Thus, do all in your power to keep them coming back is critical. Order tracking for eCommerce orders is critical in this process. With the growth of the competition and the whole eCommerce sector, customer expectations continue to rise. Customers expect to monitor their order’s progress and keep track of any possible changes. Providing real-time order status updates and guaranteeing a quick and dependable delivery process assist in reducing buyer’s remorse. It can also be an essential factor in boosting overall eCommerce company success due to increased customer satisfaction.
If you are looking for the best help in tracking your orders, Apiworx is the perfect match for you. Contact us and take our free assessment today!
Regardless of how hard you work to provide your customers with the most excellent possible services and experiences, there is always the possibility that you may suffer a decrease in customer traffic from time to time. Therefore, you must devote a great deal of effort and resources to understand why an eCommerce business is losing customers. Only a fraction of consumers is loyal to a particular brand these days. Once they find a better price elsewhere, the remainder of your customers is more than glad to leave you in the dust.
However, it is not just excessive pricing that may drive your consumers into the arms of competitors. There are many reasons that may influence your audience to pick another brand over you.
Why Are You Losing Customers?
Even above and beyond the product or service you are delivering, customer experience is paramount. Maybe your consumers feel neglected by your support staff after having a negative experience with your product. In that case, they will most likely divert their attention to another product that provides a better experience. To increase customer retention, decrease customer churn, and stop losing consumers, you must understand why they abandon your company.
One of the most common causes for consumers to disassociate from a business is if they are neglected. However, you will discover that consumers depart for various reasons if you thoroughly investigate. Here are some common reasons why customers abandon your business and head over to your competitors:
You’re Not Providing the Best Customer Experience
Poor customer service is one of the factors that may rapidly turn a customer experience negative. To a consumer, your service staff is an extension of your company. Likewise, if you are not paying attention to your policies and holistic performance, there is a high possibility that you are losing consumers due to your lack of attentiveness.
Providing excellent customer service can attract high-quality consumers to your business. So you must find out how to engage with those customers when they engage with your brand. In today’s society, customers are more concerned than ever before about the kind of service they get, which is preoccupied with the concept of “positive experience.” About 69% of consumers have said that they are loyal to your company because of the customer service they receive.
Sales Process Is Not Seamless and Integrated
People now live in a digital world where everything is quick and easy because of technology. It is no longer necessary for clients to wait until they reach home before purchasing on your website. Because of the handy mobile environment, your customers have come to anticipate a more streamlined and straightforward experience wherever and whenever they engage with a brand.
If you fail to bring that to the table, you will lose out on sales opportunities and become a reason why your eCommerce business is losing customers. Likewise, dissatisfied customers are more inclined to express their dissatisfaction on their social media feeds. When this happens, they will leave traces of negative reviews for other potential customers to see. This will hurt your reputation and drive away potential clients.
Investigate your sales techniques critically and check how they match your client’s profile. You must also maintain consistency. Consistency creates business confidence, and you can count on consistent things to perform as expected. Most consumers are concerned about inconsistent service quality, which will ultimately lead them to abandon their purchases.
Luckily, there are many services like eCommerce integration that can improve your sales process. You can also find many publications and resources available that may provide you with ideas. You can learn a lot from those who are at the top in their fields. A different point of view may provide you with some new ideas for optimizing your own sales process.
Failing To Deliver Promises
Whether you’re providing physical products or digital services online, there is no difference in the aim to keep your consumers focused on your brand. Likewise, almost every company promises its customers of high-quality products and services. Therefore, if you do not provide your customers with what they expect, they will leave you in favor of someone who can fulfill what they are looking for.
Review your process about how you communicate your process to your audience. Check the customer service you claim to provide and all of the other things you presently offer to your clients. If your promises aren’t practical, you should reconsider taking them out. It’s critical to be upfront with your audience about what they may anticipate from the beginning. Furthermore, if you cannot provide the same results and conveniences as the competition, look hard into the details. Perhaps you need more personnel or a more effective business solution, so there would be no grounds why your eCommerce business is losing customers.
Poor Customer Information Retention
You will drive consumers away from your brand if you do not know who they are. It may not be enjoyable for them, particularly when they have to convey the same information until they get it right repeatedly. However, if you are dealing with many consumers, it would be difficult to recall all of the names and information provided by each customer.
To solve this, you may choose to use client management software that saves every customer’s information. It can also keep previous interactions, support inquiries, and other transaction details. With the help of technology, all of which will be readily available at the touch of a button. It frees up your team’s time to concentrate on what they do best, like selling, client engagement, and building customer connections.
Skipping To Build A Lasting Relationship
When you complete a sales transaction, it does not automatically imply establishing a deep customer connection. An in-depth relationship requires an emotional connection between a brand and a client. There must be a degree of trust seen as mutually advantageous by both parties. People want to connect with someone they can relate to. So, it is crucial to have minor details that distinguish you from the next salesperson, business, or brand. Building connections is critical to achieving company success, generating customer loyalty, and retaining customers.
Your Brand Is Not Memorable
Another common reason your eCommerce business is losing customers is that you fail to become customers’ top of mind. Remember that your competitors engage with your customers by conducting effective social media marketing campaigns and content online. When your consumers see your competitor offering better value and relevance, the more probable it is that they will forget about you and your business.
Therefore, to succeed in today’s crowded marketplace, you must demonstrate that you can provide something other than your product or service. That may include creating a community where you listen to your audience and react to their comments, among other activities. It is also necessary to update your website, add blogs or articles that show your thought leadership. Doing these will improve your digital presence and keep you relevant. It will also increase the recall and attractiveness of your brand, both to new consumers and to those who already know you.
While you can’t keep every client, make sure that you prevent losing most of them. With the proper marketing and sales process integration in place, you may reduce the chance of your target audience learning more about competitors. Furthermore, it is essential to remember that there is no single route to client retention. It is a mix of well-developed strategies that have been welded into a clear vision and excellent employees that can provide outstanding customer service to customers.
Are you looking for the best strategy to prevent losing orders and customers? At APIWORX, we can help you do better with your growing business. Contact us and take our free assessment today!
eCommerce is a broad field encompassing many industries and types of software. To many people, this is a confusing term, since it is often interchangeable with other, related words. In this article, we cut through the noise, understanding eCommerce integration and what it means for your business. We also discuss why this is important for your business success and how to go about the integration process.
What is eCommerce?
eCommerce is short for electronic commerce. Simply put, this is a system where goods and services and bought and sold using electronic systems, like the internet. To make sense of these transactions, some data, such as inventory and pricing information, travel along with the transaction data.
While eCommerce predates the internet (it started in the 1980s), it has, of late, become almost entirely dependent on the internet. Features like group buying, private sales, and social commerce form part of eCommerce as the field continually evolves. Both small and large businesses use eCommerce to supply the demand for retail convenience. People want to purchase things 24/7 from the comfort of their living room, and they want things to work well.
To this end, businesses use a wide range of websites and website models to fuel online shopping. The downside is that these websites often don’t integrate well with other, existing processes, and inventory management software packages.
What is eCommerce Integration?
Linking your online shop or retail website to your inventory system, order management, and accounting systems is essential for success today. Customers should know whether or not the item they want to buy is in stock. Refunds should go through seamlessly regardless of the channel the customer used. Likewise, your CRM systems should have a full and complete view of the customer’s order history.
Sure, you could manually update all this information, but that would take an inordinate amount of time and resources. The information on your website would then also be constantly out of date, exasperating customers and staff alike. Alternatively, you could link your retail website to the back-end accounting and inventory system. This accounting system or ERP (enterprise resource planning) software – there are also a wide variety of software packages on the market to this end.
Proper integration is essential.
Proper integration of all these systems allows for full automation, resulting in an update on all systems, i.e. bi-directional data flow. Here, inventory levels update automatically at each step in the process. You will know when the product is available on the eCommerce website. It would be clear when the product leaves or enters a warehouse. Moreover, it is easy to monitor when the entire transaction is complete. Initially, these updates occurred in batches, once or twice daily. Recently, however, advances in technology allow for real-time or near-real-time data flow, keeping your site up to date, to the minute.
We work with companies all the time trying to solve this problem. The scope varies dramatically depending on the specific needs, but consider this recent example.
The customer operates three different websites one on Shopify, one on BigCommerce, and another using WooCommerce on their own server. They also sell through several different marketplaces. They have an Amazon Seller Marketplace Account, an eBay account, and Lazada. All have different requirements for integration. Further complicating matters are the different payment systems and methods applied from each channel. And finally, to make matters worse, all inventory is shipped from a third-party warehouse vendor or 3PL.
Lastly, your bank, accountant, and shareholders need a consolidated view of this information in a proper accounting system.
To say the least, doing this right is hard.
When eCommerce integration allows for real-time updates, the pricing, inventory, order, and shipping information available to staff and customers are up-to-date, easing the process flow. The added benefit is that this is all handled automatically, decreasing the need for staff on hand to complete transactions.
Why is eCommerce Integration Important?
Often, businesses rely on a variety of different packages for their eCommerce websites, business operations, and ERP systems. Too often, these software packages can’t communicate with each other, hampering the integration process. Here, staff members suffer exasperation as they untangle the mass of conflicting messages. Their task is figuring out what was sold, at what price, and what’s left in the inventory. This disconnect severely hampers business flow and thus the profit margins and customer experience.
Customers Want a Seamless Experience
Customers expect a seamless experience in brand interaction, regardless of the type of interaction they choose. They expect the information on your website to be accurate and up to date, and they expect smooth sailing in purchasing your goods or services. This is where eCommerce integration enters the picture. If customers have a disjointed experience with your brand, fuelled by systems that can’t talk to each other, they are unlikely to return or recommend the brand to others.
With proper integration, your eCommerce, business operations, and ERP systems “talk” to each other in real-time, resulting in accurate, up-to-date information displaying on all your platforms, both front-end, and back-end. Here, customers know whether the goods or services they require, are available and when to expect delivery. With correct pricing information, your bottom line is protected as well.
With eCommerce integration, shipping addresses update automatically. The customer types in their own delivery address, which is then used across the entire purchasing process. You no longer have human error entering into misspelling addresses, resulting in late deliveries and frustrated customers. The integration allows for automatic shipping notifications, enabling customers to track deliveries from when they ordered to when the package arrives at their door.
Another benefit of proper integration is in handling returns. This is especially relevant for online fashion retailers – customers often change their minds and return products. Traditionally, this was a nightmare for online retailers, since the return process was handled manually. Integration automates even this process, saving time for your employees and simplifying the process for the customer.
Saves Time and Money
Integration has the added benefit of real-time sales tracking and statistical analysis. Since the process is fully automated, you no longer have staff members cranking away at the hidden machinery, updating inventories, and tracking sales manually. For companies with large sales volumes, this process was traditionally a full-time job for entire teams of people. These teams are now free to do work of greater value to your company, saving both time and money. Automation is the way of the future. With automation, you have the added benefit of eliminating human error, something that often occurs when entering data manually.
Manage Increased Sales Volumes Easily
Since eCommerce integration allows for automatic updates on all your linked systems, you save time on data entry. In the past, an uptick in sales meant hours in front of a screen, manually keying in sales figures, and finding mistakes to match up your online and actual inventories. With the automatic updates resulting from proper integration, you will know exact inventory levels in real-time. When merchants experience an increase in sales volume, they know immediately and can thus act immediately if needed. This integration also prevents overselling, which is a definite benefit to the merchant.
An uptick in sales used to mean a mad dash to get more inventory, as you only know that you’re running low on a product when it’s already too late. Proper integration adds a buffer, buying you time to supplement inventory levels if needed. Real-time access to this data shortens your staff members’ reaction time as well.
Often, increased sales volume is the result of extended marketplaces. This often happens when you add an additional website to your eCommerce arsenal. With proper integration, you can do this without losing operational efficiency. Your customers won’t even know the difference.
Online Retail is on the Rise
According to eMarketer, global retail eCommerce sales could account for as much as $4 trillion at the end of 2020. This staggering amount accounts for 14.6% of the forecasted retail spending of the year. Of course, these numbers might change dramatically in light of the current COVID-19 pandemic. According to news reports, online spending is on the rise with the increase of social distancing measures and the advent of the touch-free economy. Getting your business in line with the latest market trends is essential to stay ahead of the pack.
How do I Integrate eCommerce?
eCommerce integration, if done right, is a smooth process with minimal disruption to the workflow and other business operations. Here, two or more systems that can’t work together are “taught” to work together, facilitating bi-directional data flow. For this to work smoothly, minimizing the effect on your customers and staff members, you need the right people on the job. Industry experts, such as the teams from APIworx, understand your concerns regarding integration, and they know the challenges you face without integration.
Before lifting a finger to integrate your current systems, you need to understand where you’re headed. This will help clarify which systems and solutions are needed for successful integration. Our team has the relevant experience to make this happen with minimal disruption to your current systems and optimal performance of the integrated system.
For new businesses, this road is far simpler, since they can factor in eCommerce integration from the get-go. There are many “all-in-one” software packages available that allow for integration across all aspects of a growing business. Here, choosing the right solution for your business is simpler and potentially less expensive than after-the-fact integration options.
eCommerce is on the rise, taking over market share at a rapid rate. To keep up with current and future global demands, eCommerce integration is essential for all online retailers. For new businesses, this integration is simple, since they can choose an all-in-one software package to help them on their way. Established businesses that are not yet integrated, have a more challenging road ahead of them. For them, finding the right integration solution is essential – that’s where APIworx can help.