Nordstrom is well known for providing excellent customer service. What you might not know is what happens behind the scenes on their website to ensure an excellent customer experience: They are constantly analyzing user behavior to ensure customers are getting exactly what they want.
Contrary to popular wisdom, Nordstrom.com has become a key customer contact point. Most people think of webisites as marketing or eCommerce machines, not as customer support channels. But can a better website help really help you improve customer service? The short answer is yes, absolutely. By making website content easier to find, understand, and interact with, your website can do more than sell--it can help.
How Your Website Can Help With Customer Service
Frequently Asked Questions
Having an FAQ page on your website is a well documented best practice. These pages are often helpful for clients and prospects alike, but sometimes they fall short of acutally being helpful. Here are some tips for your website FAQs:
- Make them searchable. If you have a long list, make it easy for clients to find what they need.
- Keep them updated. If people stop asking a question or new questions arise, change the FAQs on our website to accurately reflect the customer care environment.
- Keep answers brief and instructive. When you have longer answers, consider creating videos that will accompany text and inform customers in a more interesting and engaging way.
Is your company great? Do your customers think so? Including honest testimonials and case studies on your website can help you get the word out. In addition to written testimonials, take a lesson from the popular television ads that show real customers giving feedback about a product or service. An audio testimonial, recorded by your client via computer or smartphone app, is an easy way to infuse authenticity and personability into these pages of your website. If you're featuring a case study, a more in-depth video can showcase how they have used your product or service effectively and how others can do the same.
No matter how great your website is, if customers can't findwhat they're looking for, your online presence is little more than useless. When designing your website, think like your customers: what are they lookingfor most? How do they ask for it? Mimic these options on your website for an easy to use experience. If almost all your clients call you and ask for "mobile phones", don't refer to them as "cell phones" on your website. When you organize your website around the way your customers think, speak, and act, you'll see that they can more easily find the information they need.
Sometimes, you just have to tell people what to do. On your website, calling people to action with instructive language like, "click here" or "download this" can help them navigate your site and can help you appropriate guide visitors toward the content you think is most important. You can create these calls to action in the form of text links, buttons, or even recorded audio messages that communicate with visitors with real human speech. Some companies will add branded audio, in the form of music and messages, to their website to make it more interesting and engaging while others direct visitors with talking avatars.
The Customer Service - Website Feedback Loop
Unfortunately, it's not enough just to include these items on your website once then forget about them. It's important to consistently update your website content based on current customer needs or product offerings. Use feedback from customers on the phone or in emails to drive your website content and structure and use website behavior to point offline customers to appropriate parts of your website.
Although websites are primarily thought of as a marketing and communication tool, when structured appropriately, they can also be a key tool for customer support. By combining searchable, written text with multimedia content like audio and video, you can create a comprehensive website experience that helps customers efficiently locate the information they need and effectively consume it.