Peak Season 2023: Is Your Post-Purchase Experience Ready?
Published on: August 2, 2023
Updated: October 10, 2023
With heightened economic uncertainty, retailers may feel uneasy about what consumers are willing to spend this peak season. The good news is Salesforce is reporting that two-thirds of consumers say their financial situation has remained the same or improved.
Additionally, the results from this year’s Amazon Prime Day are rolling in and they revealed that the first day of the event was the largest sales day in company history.
Keeping this information in mind, here are three tips that your brand can use to ensure the best outcome this holiday season.
1. Personalization is Key
Your messaging to customers should be personalized and branded from pre- to post-purchase. As retailers know too well, it is easier (and cheaper) to convert customers who have already shopped with you before than new customers. This especially rings true if your leaves a lasting impression.
If your brand is planning to have any type of Black Friday or Cyber Monday sale, your post-purchase and returns process should be fine-tuned to ensure repeat purchases or you will miss out on revenue. Last year, parcelLab reported over 30 million tracking emails were sent?from Black Friday to Cyber Monday.?
Knowing this, one way to increase your brand’s chances of repeat purchases is by tailoring your post-purchase messages based on segmented customer data that you have gathered. Additionally, if your brand has a loyalty program, your post-purchase and returns messaging should also be personalized to customer status. Increase your conversion rates by adding special “first look” or invite-only deals that make customers feel special and ensure customers keep coming back.
2. Leverage Every Opportunity
Post-Purchase and Returns Communications
Your customers are super excited to receive their order after they click that purchase button. Don’t leave customers in the dark this holiday season and your customer service agents overwhelmed with an influx of costly WISMO/WISMR calls. Send proactive post-purchase communications every step of the way from order received to out for delivery. Also, it is equally important to prepare delay notifications for the times that a package may be held up due to weather, staffing, or other issues that arise during the holiday season.
Similarly, when a customer is sending back a return, there should be open communication with the customer about the status of their return. This way, they can trust their package got back to you and that their refund or exchange has been processed.
Having a well-thought-out strategy for communications can slash your WISMO/WISMR inquiries in half, resulting in substantial savings and more efficient customer service agents.
Order Status Pages
Depending on what you use to manage your post-purchase experience, your tracking or could be carrier-hosted, post-purchase software vendor hosted, or hosted on your own site. The best option would be to have this page embedded on your own website.
With order status pages embedded on your website, you can continually push people back to your site to encourage repeat purchases and your customer service agents can leverage it for inquiries that come their way. Some retailers have said they see 79% of their customers return due to hosting order status pages on their website.
Regardless of this page being embedded, this page should be leveraged as a customer touchpoint and provide your brand with additional cross-sell and upsell opportunities. This is a page that customers will continually come back to, so make sure it is designed in the most impactful way for your customer and your brand.
3. Empower Your Customer
In an ideal world, retailers would experience little to no returns after the holidays. Unfortunately, that is not the case, so retailers need to have a strategy. Your returns experience can make or break a customer’s experience. 81% of shoppers have stopped buying from a brand after one bad return experience.
Here are some ways you can before the holidays:
- Update your returns policy: Make sure your policy is easy to find and understandable. Shoppers decide if they are going to make a purchase with you based on your returns policy, so don’t miss out on low-hanging fruit by hiding it or making it difficult to understand.
- Provide omnichannel returns: If you can, let customers choose where to return their products. For example, they can bring it to your store, a carrier drop-off point, or have it picked up from their house.
- Enable : Route customers to a return portal (preferably hosted on your website) when they need to complete a return. This empowers them to register the return themselves in an easy manner and prevents calls to customer service.
- Give your customers options: Prevent returns by incorporating returns reasoning within a self-service portal. For example, if a customer is returning a shirt because it was too big, provide a sizing chart and show product availability in other sizes. Also, encourage customers to select store credit instead of returning and provide a discount code to promote repeat business.
Exceed Peak Season Expectations with parcelLab
At parcelLab, we understand that planning and strategizing for peak season can be stressful, especially if you aren’t leveraging a flexible, easy-to-use post-purchase platform.