Customer service, not price, will make retailers stand out from crowd, claims Youstice

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UK shoppers are soon to embark on the biggest online shopping spree since records began with more than one fifth (21%) of the nation’s yearly online revenue set to be spent in a matter of weeks. With prices slashed for Black Friday (28 November) and Cyber Monday (1 December) consumers will reap the rewards, but how do retailers ensure they win big at the sales? According to Youstice.com – experts in customer claim management – the smart sellers should look to secure the competitive advantage through exceptional customer service to stand out from the crowd.

These findings were outlined in a report commissioned by Youstice – titled ‘Keeping the Faith: Building Trust in an Online World’ – which interviewed more than 3,000 online shoppers across Europe to discover the factors that impact their purchasing decision. The report revealed the huge influence of customer service for nine in ten (90%) shoppers when making a decision to purchase. Furthermore, three fifths (63%) are persuaded to make a purchase purely on positive customer feedback while four in five shoppers (79%) are influenced by visible industry trust marks on a retailer’s website.

These findings firmly put the spotlight on the impact of negative feedback and how it may prove harmful to online retailers by discouraging shoppers to continue with a purchase. During the frantic festive buying period shoppers look for visible cues and reinforcement, via positive reviews, to quickly decide between purchases. Prevention is always better than a cure – those retailers who can resolve a claim before it escalates into a complaint will benefit, but this can only be achieved through a good and accessible customer service platform such as Youstice.

Patrick Fagan, associate lecturer at Goldsmiths University and expert in consumer behaviour and psychology, said: “Today’s consumers are incredibly savvy about how and where they shop online, making decisions about a retailer as soon as they land on the homepage. Retailers need to wise up and understand the psyche of the modern shopper and what is likely to trigger a purchasing decision the quickest.”

Zbynek Loebl, founder and CEO, Youstice, said: “Price was the definitive factor during the festive buying period but the findings of the report clearly highlight the growing importance placed on customer service. Shoppers need to know that if anything goes wrong, it can be quickly fixed. Positive reviews and limiting the number of claims that develop into complaints is crucial now. Making customer service clearly visible, or implementing a system like Youstice to manage claims gives retailers the advantage when price is no longer a clear-cut decider.”