Not only are you a business owner, but you’re a customer too; a customer to other businesses. Just like your customers, you conduct your own research before committing to buying a particular product or service. But what happens when you can’t find what you’re looking for? If you’re like the majority of consumers, you get extremely frustrated and decide to go with the company that gives you what you want, when you want it.
In this article we detail why your business can’t afford to rely solely on your website to provide excellent customer service. While there are many reasons to diversify your customer service efforts, we’ll focus on the following:
- Inadequate User Experience
- 404 Pages or Broken Links
- Valuable Content versus Paid Reviews
- Unmemorable Business Website
- Your Website Lacks Search Functionality
1. Inadequate User Experience
User experience (UX) defined is a person’s experience with, “a particular product, system or service. It includes the practical, experiential, affective, meaningful and valuable aspects of human–computer interaction. Additionally, it includes a person’s perceptions of system aspects such as utility, ease of use and efficiency.
When it comes to websites, user experience can simply be defined as a customer’s ability to navigate your site and find what they’re looking for. For instance, inadequate user experience on your website could be like owning a department store and not:
- Labeling your products with price tags;
- Clearly identifying where your shoppers should checkout;
- Providing a customer service desk for assistance.
If your website is hard to navigate, your potential and existing customers will quickly leave and head to your competitor’s site that can help them find what they’re looking for.
2. 404 Pages or Broken Links
It’s great to have a lot of content on your website to inform, educate and entertain your target market. However, when you constantly update and revise your site, you can be stuck directing your visitors to pages that they cannot view.
In laymen’s terms, having a 404 page pop up just means that the content/page they’re wanting is simply not available. Whether you deleted that page when refreshing your content or made an error in the customized URL, your customers will not be able to view the information they’re searching for.
Having broken links or 404 pages doesn’t help your customer and to the contrary, it wastes their time. Delivering great customer service is making sure that your customers are always assisted and attended to. Sending them to pages that don’t exist will likely leave them with a bad impression of your company and could be the reason why your business’s website has such high bounce rates.
3. Valuable Content vs. Paid Reviews
There are nearly 1.1 billion websites on the internet and that number increases by the second. All of the websites in existence contain more than one page of content each. The internet these days is flooded with content and so when a potential customer is looking for more information on your business, what’s going to pop up?
Consumers are more savvy when it comes to spotting paid advertising and fake reviews. If your content is mostly overtly flattering in nature, your product or service has the potential of just being ignored in favor of your competitor’s site.
Providing excellent customer serviceincludes genuinely trying to help your customers find a solution to their problem. No one likes the pushy salesman approach. Commissioning fake reviews and bogus blogger testimonies will bring your brand’s reputation down dramatically.
Your customers want information on your product or service, they aren’t looking for fluffed up reviews posing as informative articles.
4. Unmemorable Business Website
Building a memorable brand that piques your potential customers’ interest can be quite difficult if you’re relying on just your website. A really stellar website that offers self-service options that are easy to use can cost your company tens of thousands of dollars.
If you’re like most business owners that opt for a more affordable website, you’re going to have to make up for the lack of customer service on your website by having an easy way for customers to contact you for more information. If you don’t, you’re left with leaving your website users with a bland and unmemorable impression of your company.
You can get away with having a less advanced website if you devote a customer service team to offer 24-hour assistance to your customers with questions.
5. Your Website Lacks Search Functionality
As the old saying goes, “Time is money.” Your potential and existing customers will not devote a whole lot of time to search your entire website to find out if you’re the company they’re looking for. Like many of the examples listed in this article, if potential customers don’t find what they want when they want it, they’ll likely move to the next website in their search results.
Giving your audience the opportunity to search your website for easier access to the information important to them will increase your chances of making a sale. That’s why it’s highly beneficial for you to include a search function on your website.
You want to make buying from you as easy as possible and a built-in search bar for your website can do just that.
The Solution to Delivering 24-Hour Excellent Customer Service
All of these examples can be rectified and perfected but we still suggest that you do not rely on your website to provide excellent customer service. These bad customer service practices caused by an inadequate website can be corrected by simply placing a 1-800 customer service phone number on all of your site’s pages.
Outsourcing your business telephone inquiries to customer service experts can be as affordable as $19.95 per month. Learn more by reading our next article, 10 Ways Customer Service is Boosted Because of a Business Answering Service.