The changeability of consumers online means that ecommerce retailers, more so than conventional retailers, have to work hard to induce e-loyalty and extract more value from each customer. In order to make customers more loyal, e-retailers must create an online environment where consumers feel engaged, informed and involved.
There are eight key attributes of all the “best” websites: that is, those which succeed in maximising customer satisfaction and thereby improving customer loyalty.
For this article, we will use the example of Drone Etc, the online store servicing “all things drone”, in tandem with LoyaltyLion, who provide a customised loyalty platform and back-end analytics to the Drone Etc website.
Drones Etc. tailor their online environment to their consumers, offering a huge array of drone specifications on the drop-down top navigational tab. The demonstration of the options available increases the probability that consumers will find what they are looking for and gives the perception of increased choice.
Since drones are a significant monetary commitment for most customers, Drones Etc. have tailored their approach to increase e-loyalty by highlighting their support and repairs option on the home page of the website. This customised look attracts customers to come back and use the additional support services Drone Etc. provide.
Drones Etc.’s live chat service adds an additional layer to the interaction between the customers and business. It also caters to the more technical approach to purchasing that a drone customer might have. Such an approach personalises the business-consumer relationship, solidifying the consumer’s loyalty.
Drones Etc. provide relevant information and incentives to their customers in two ways:
Therefore, consumers are encouraged to increase their breadth of purchases over time.
Drones Etc. pay attention to customer’s pre and post-purchase activities; asking customers to create an account with them. By tracking customer’s transactional behaviour they can personalise their online interface. This allows them to both facilitate immediate transactions and nurture long-term customer relationships.
Drones Etc. create a community among their customers by inviting them to participate in a shared forum. The forum contains topics attractive to potential and current customers, and facilitates engagement with other community members. An online, unrestricted environment improves the experience of current and future customers, allowing them to develop strong, trusting relationships with Drones Etc.
Drones Etc. are able to offer a huge range and variety of products, reducing search time and inconvenience for the customer. This insulates them from the risk of a customer switching to a competitor and increases the likelihood that a customer will return, as they can now purchase more products from the same place.
Drones Etc.’s website is simple, intuitive and user-friendly, with an attractive design and an easily navigable structure. Both the pop ups offering deals and the banner asking customers if they would like to sign up to the newsletter minimises consumer effort. The ease of use facilitates fast transaction completion and reduces customer response time, both of which are favourable for increasing customer satisfaction.
Also, there is a unique “financing” option available for customers who buy more expensive drones, making it convenient for them to purchase immediately, without having to source other ways of financing.
Drones Etc. achieve an effective mix of informative content and attractive images on their website. They blend information with imagery in order to draw consumers. In doing so, they emphasise their extensive retailing experience without detracting from the customer experience in using the website. The unique character of the website is desirable for customers, increasing their satisfaction in purchasing through Drones Etc.
Retailers who incorporate these eight key aspects into their website are creating an engaging and convenient purchasing experience for consumers. The more engaging and convenient the website becomes, the more satisfied customers will be. This helps in overcoming the barriers e-retailers face in initially making customers profitable. Above all, websites must create user experiences valued by consumers, crafting customer satisfaction and consequently loyalty.
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