Did you know that customers develop a first impression of your website in only 2.6 seconds? Also, 88% of first-time visitors will never return if they have a bad experience.
Yet some businesses still consider this type of user experience to be a marketing issue. While an aesthetically pleasing and easy-to-use website can undoubtedly enhance other digital marketing efforts, the browsing experience is actually a customer support issue. A great website that leverages the latest technologies and quality design elements is key to providing customers with exceptional support. Conversely, a poorly designed and dysfunctional website will diminish the support experience.
Businesses that design websites accordingly enjoy higher customer satisfaction and lower churn. A great website experience also can make life easier on support agents when customers are able to resolve issues via online self-service. This self-help reduces inbound contact volume while expediting the resolution process.
Below, we examine why each customer's first – and subsequent – website visits should be treated as part of the support experience. This article demonstrates the importance of end-to-end support and how it influences the entire brand journey.
The website experience is highly influential in how customers view your entire company, because:
The modern class of consumers forms their opinions about a business fast. For example, they're quick to draw conclusions about a company based solely on the appearance and layout of a website. This response is particularly overriding if they haven't yet interacted with a business through any other mediums like social media.
If a poorly-designed or difficult-to-use website greets a consumer, they'll likely make assumptions about your business as a whole. They may conclude, “this company’s products are probably sub-par," or “it will be difficult to get service if I run into a problem after purchase.”
While these assumptions may be inaccurate and unfair, they still occur. Therefore, your business should treat the website experience as the first leg in a customer’s support journey. Simply ensuring your website has an intuitive design and adding an AI-powered chatbot to the page can significantly improve overall perceptions.
While some customer support requests must escalate to a live agent, many can be resolved quickly via self-service tools. Self-service options not only benefit your support agents, many customers prefer to resolve minor issues on their own.
To meet customer expectations and provide a higher level of support on your website, we recommend taking two key steps. First, create a frequently asked questions (FAQs) page and put it in a conspicuous location on your website. This section will be a valuable support tool that will positively impact customer perception of your brand. Second, deploy a chatbot. Bots have advanced over the last few years and readily help customers remedy a wide range of product or service issues.
Unfortunately, no business can completely prevent product- or service-related issues no matter how hard they try. Therefore, companies across all industries should ensure they have adequate support mechanisms to address problems when they occur. This approach includes making the company website part of the customer support journey.
Businesses must be aware that the support they provide, or the lack thereof, will significantly influence customer perception of their brand. Customers are willing to forgive occasional product issues as long as the support experience that follows is positive and helpful.
Consumers may sometimes choose to purchase a product or sign up for a service, even if they're not 100% satisfied with the website experience. However, this dissatisfaction will carry over in the event that they need to seek product support.
In light of this fact, businesses should strive to start every relationship on the right foot by providing support across multiple channels, including the website.
Finally, all companies should consider the website browsing experience part of support because modern consumers expect an end-to-end buying experience. They want to access guidance and assistance throughout the entire product lifecycle, including the pre-purchasing phase.
Businesses that implement effective end-to-end support protocols will nurture customer loyalty, improve the customer experience, protect their brand image, and increase the chance that individuals will make repeat purchases. In short, end-to-end support is necessary if businesses hope to gain a competitive edge in our increasingly crowded marketplace.
Related Article: The Good and Bad of Chatbots
Customers start forming opinions about your company and brand from the moment your website loads onto their device . They'll continue to forge these opinions as they navigate your site, read up on products, attempt to make purchases, or interact with AI-powered chatbots.
If any touchpoint isn't seamless, they may leave the site with a negative perception of your organization. Depending on the severity of those negative experiences, they can leave brand-damaging reviews or share their opinions with others via social media or word of mouth. Either way, these actions can have some major consequences for your business.
Fortunately, you can ensure that customers receive world-class, end-to-end support by partnering with Goodbay Technologies. We offer digital experience, business intelligence and growth strategy solutions that span the complete customer journey. Learn more about how we can help you provide high-level support by contacting our team today.