Social media has great value for retailers, and is forming an increasingly large part of customers’ overall perception and experience of a brand.
When it comes to customer service, 67% engage with brands and businesses to seek help, as well as raising issues, queries and concerns. The increasing number of people using social platforms for this purpose creates the perfect opportunity for any retailer to boost their sales while impressing potential customers.
Customer experience management company, Market Force, commented: “The emergence of social media has given consumers a whole new way to interact with the brands they love – and a forum to complain when brands disappoint. But what many companies have learned is just how powerful connecting one-to-one with customers can be when those consumers take the time to post.”
Treating customers well, responding quickly to feedback and showing a desire to deliver a high quality of service will build loyalty with existing customers and encourage first-time shoppers to make a purchase. On the other hand, ignored complaints and negative reviews online will creative negative PR. While poor experiences may have been shared with friends or family in the past, social media has provided a platform for people to publicly broadcast their thoughts to a potentially unlimited audience.
With such a large percentage of consumers now turning to social media for answers to their questions, many will be satisfied by reading the answers to similar questions asked by others, reducing the number of inbound inquiries you receive.
Using social media as a platform for customer service brings unlimited benefits, increasing brand trust, growing reputation and giving retailers the opportunity to portray themselves as desirable.
Create happy and returning customers by engaging on social media. Reply to questions and create conversation in a professional manner. This dialogue creates a memorable experience, helping to retain and gain new and existing customers, while building trust, rapport and brand loyalty.
Embrace negative comments
While nobody wants to read or interact with negative reviews about their store, these comments will be made whether you have a profile or not. It’s far better to be in control of your PR, so respond quickly to complaints and show onlookers that you take pride in your customer support. The more efficiently you resolve a dispute, the more likely you are to keep a customer, rather than sending them to a competitor.
Regularly check what consumers are saying about your brand online and use this feedback to improve service in the future.
- Customers spend 20% – 40% more with companies that engage with customer service requests on social media
- 89% of retail customers go to competitors after poor customer service experiences
- Consumers are 71% more likely to buy based on a social media referral
- 45% of consumers use social media to share bad customer experiences
- 88% of people trust customer reviews as much as they would trust a personal recommendation
For more ways to make the most of social media, view ‘5 Ways Social Media Can be Used to a Retailers’ Advantage’.