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Running an eCommerce Business

EPIC FAIL! Most Stores Fail To Meet Their Customer's Basic Expectations. Do You?

EPIC FAIL! Most Stores Fail To Meet Their Customer's Basic Expectations. Do You?

by John Larkin

John runs the blog here at eCommerceLift and is a verified Shopify Expert. Interested in an initial growth consultation? Click here

10 years ago

EPIC FAIL! Most Stores Fail To Meet Their Customer's Basic Expectations. Do You?

We’ve all heard that it’s your brands job to delight your customers. And yes, ideally that is what you, as a store owner, should be doing. In reality this just ain’t happening. In fact I’ve witnessed countless numbers of eCommerce stores that are epically failing to meet their customer’s basic needs.

By not meeting the customer basics how do you expect to build loyalty, attract customers and grow your store? Don’t panic. It’s not too late to atone for your lapse in customer service.

We have created a checklist of 8 customer basic needs that you should be meeting as a store owner that will help you make customers happy and buying from your store.  

1. Customer Reviews

Customers not only want reviews on your website, they expect it. With stores like eCommerce giant Amazon embracing reviews on every product page, it’s become necessary for the smaller guys to jump on the bandwagon.

In fact product reviews have been extensively reported to influence a customers purchasing decision with 40.9% of customers declaring that they expect reviews when shopping online (Get Elastic). A further 61% of customers read reviews before purchasing online (Label Media).

Placing customer’s reviews on your product pages is what every merchant should do to meet customers’ expectations. Make them clear and accessible for customers so that you can satisfy their want for reviews before they decide to go elsewhere.

2. On-Site Customer Service

In the online world everything is instant. Customers want everything right now and customer service is no exception. They want to be able to ask how and why to a real person with a reply ASAP.

Customer service is a real decider in whether a customer will buy from your store, become a loyal customer and what they tell other customers. Having great customer service can really make a customer shopping experience as 77% of customers agreed that online chat positively influenced their attitude about the retailer making it a real draw for customers (Desk).

On-site customer service that pops up on screen and gives customers a chance to get instant help from a real person is invaluable for your brand. It’s reassuring to customers and it’s not only what they want but what they expect.

3. No Fuss Checkout

One of the biggest complaints customers have is that checkout is just too complicated. Having to go through page upon page of boxes that has to be filled out with unnecessary information having to be given isn’t something customers want.

Customers now expect a streamlined, easy checkout without any fuss and if they find otherwise, they turn way. Make checkout simple by offering an express checkout, PayPal and make the flow of your checkout as simple as possible makes customers much more likely to buy from your store. Simply cut the gibberish and make it easy.

4. Transparent Shipping Costs

Customers dislike when online stores are come across untrustworthy or dishonest. Online shopping is riddled with uncertainties so customers expect stores to make their experience as transparent and trustworthy as possible. They don't want to be tricked with hidden costs or extras. 

One way to meet customers’ expectations is to be upfront with shipping costs. 59% of customers stated that upfront shipping costs were an essential when buying online (Get Elastic).

So why not have shipping costs easily seen on your website? Provide a list of shipping costs to different locations or a shipping cost calculator within your website. This will make customers think you are upfront with your costs and instil trust in your brand.

5. Product Information

Product information can make or break a sale. Providing too little is a big no-no for customers as it contributes to a shockingly high bounce rate of 42% from your website (Smash Magazine).

Meet customers’ expectations here by providing a glut of product information. List the size, materials, features and whatever else customers would want to know about to appease them. Additionally you can go the extra mile with product videos and extra images so that your customers have not reasons to be underwhelmed by your stores product information. 

6. Convenience

Shopping online is all about convenience. You can sit on your couch, visit hundreds on stores and get whatever you like delivered to your front door. It’s what customers want and expect. So many stores buck convenience however and are finicky and annoying instead.  

Having certain things on your website that make it convenient and easily navigable are a real attractive to customers as it cuts down on little annoyances. Search bars, accessible company policies, fast loading times all are expected from a customers as they want their shopping time to be fast and convenient. These little things are the difference between a enjoyable shopping experience or a bounce. 

7. Works on Mobile

With the recent explosion of mobile eCommerce, it’s only natural that customers would want a website that is as sleek on mobile as it is on desktop. However, so many merchants are lagging behind the mobile eCommerce trend and losing out on valuable sales because of it.

Stats back up customers need for mobile eCommerce as 43% of consumers will visit a competitor’s site next after a negative mobile shopping experience and 41% of buyers don’t complete a purchase on mobile device because too difficult to enter credit card information (Selz).

It’s now imperative to make your store mobile compatible as customers are demanding it. Work on having a site that is mobile and tablet ready by designing a store that works and looks great so that mobile users don’t feel slighted and want to buy from your store.  

8. Good Looks

It’s not enough to make your store have ample amount of information about your products and your brand, you need to make it look pretty too. Having a visually appealing site and images is something that draws customers in and it’s what they want and demand.  

Visuals are surprisingly important as 66.7% of customers reportedly said that a visually appealing website is one the top influencers in their purchase decision (Get Elastic). Visuals are what make first impressions for your customers and lacking in that department are definitely destructive to your business.

Focusing on your stores design and product image is essential. It makes your store look more professional, trustworthy and customers need to feel attracted to your store and having a visually stunning website is how to lure them in and keep them coming back.

Fixing Your Fail

We are betting that you may be missing one or two of these customer essentials from your eCommerce store. They might even seem insignificant to you but your customers are seeing it as a deal breaker. 

To help you reach customers expectations pick one of these at a time from our list and make sure you are doing it in your store. This can be a simple task that you work on each day and slowly incorporate each one of these customer musts into your store so that customers no longer have a reason to kick up a fuss and turn away. 


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