When it comes to eCommerce, your first contact with a customer many times is the order acknowledgment they receive after placing an order with you. This is your initial opportunity to really make an impression. So let's talk about how we can use this to our advantage.
Your WordPress eCom platform, for example, WooCommerce (aff), will send out an order acknowledgment email upon receipt of an order. This is where you can make that stellar first impression. But did you know you can, and should, customize these emails to reflect your business' brand and personality?
Order Communications = Trust
When customers place an order, they are, in essence, placing their trust in you. The emails they receive from that point forward will impact the entire order process. Consequently, these “touchpoint” emails will be a window into what it is like to do business with you.
You know what it is like when you receive an informative order acknowledgment in your inbox. First, you check to ensure all the details are there to let you know your order was successful.
You also will make a note of the intent and tone of that acknowledgment. Does it seem welcoming? Does the email look professional and include details you may need and let you know the next steps and what to expect?
Or do the emails seem robotic and autogenerated? Was all the information you were looking for included, or do you feel that the email lacks thoroughness and personalization?
Then, knowingly or not, you form an opinion about the business you just handed your hard-earned dollars over to. Hopefully, the impression is one of being trustworthy and credible.
That is the impression you want to leave for your business, right? If your eCommerce platform does not allow this level of customization, time to upgrade to one that does.
Personalizing these important emails by including your personality and branding will allow you to stand out. Folks are shopping online more than ever, so they will naturally make comparisons. You being you will make an impression from many of the other sites your customers purchase from.
The Basics of eCom Order Emails
Here are a handful of basics that I have used successfully. But, of course, we're talking about not only order confirmation but the process and follow-up emails. These tips will enhance confidence, avoid confusion and ensure your customers are given the information they need.
- Make sure you note the basics. This includes your site name, your site URL and have all your contact information within the email. Include your phone, customer service email address, link to your order FAQ and online contact form (aff). This helps to make it convenient for customers to contact you with any questions they may have about their order.
- Include as many details as possible. Note the products ordered and note whether the items are in stock. If products are virtual, note the download/access process. If you are experiencing delays of any sort — note this right then and there. Doing so helps to make sure that all parties are on the same page.
- Manage expectations. Inform your customer what will happen from that point forward. Include when will they receive the next update and shipment confirmation. Note time factors and any information that will help them understand your order to shipment process.
- Avoid confusion. If your site URL does not match your company name, include a brief comment about what they will see on their credit card statement. This also helps to avoid any unnecessary charge-backs.
- Order emails don't stop with the final shipping confirmation notice. Setup a follow-up email asking for a testimonial or review. Make it easy for customers to let you know what they thought about the process of doing business with you. Encourage their input with a discount or freebie if they mention you on their socials. This is information and exposure that will help you to improve on what may not have been perfect. And build upon what is already working.
Order Communications Build Future Business Opportunities
One last thing… Personalize as much as possible so that the process appears remarkable. Automated responses many times feel like that — automated. Do what you can to make your confirmations appear to be just for that very person reading them.
Keeping these tidbits in mind when developing your order acknowledgment emails can save time spent on customer service inquiries. And when you are busy, that leaves more time for responding promptly.
When customers have a pleasant experience, you build trust, and customers are open to future communications. Not to mention increasing the chance your customers will “talk you up” to others.
At your service,