Companies are increasing their investment in tech, and client experience is emerging as a top priority. Most consumers value customer experience almost as highly as the price of the product itself, and we know that the buyer’s experience is critical to overall brand success. We’ve summarized what buyers are looking for and the emerging customer experience trends to help your business stand out from the competition.
Photo by Rupixen
1. Provide an easy buying experience
High-friction checkouts with overly complex payment processes are one of the largest causes of customer frustration. A committed buyer might be eager to purchase, but without a streamlined checkout and preferred payment options, buyers feel inconvenienced and drop off—costing conversions.
Instant gratification and ease have become a mainstay in daily consumer life. It doesn’t matter if the buyer is purchasing a t-shirt or an antique couch—conversion rates will increase, and cart abandonment will decrease when offering various payment options and transparent shipping costs.
2. Consider your climate-conscious consumer
Searches for eco-friendly products have grown by over 70% since 2016. Many of us make purchases depending on how it makes us feel. In fact, almost 90% of shoppers will sacrifice Amazon Prime delivery speeds in favor of a more sustainable product, revealing a transition in consumer values.
Companies are taking note of these consumer shifts; Apple is working towards carbon neutrality by 2030, and Etsy now offers reclaimed furniture. Rare, unique, and highly valuable goods are well-positioned for this consumer shift due to their intrinsic sustainable nature.
Sellers of these rare and valuable goods can capitalize on this consumer shift by leveraging technology to optimize their operations. Innovative software can help reduce overhead and energy consumption and calculate carbon emissions for an annual report— potentially stimulating buyer trust and higher growth.
3. Direct-to-consumer (DTC) business model for a better buyer experience
COVID-19 forced many retailers, including those that sell art, furniture, jewelry, and other unique items, to rethink how they connect with buyers. DTC business models allow for greater control over the buyer experience, so seeing a noticeable increase in sellers going this route is no surprise. However, in-house tasks like requesting shipping quotes and managing carriers can absorb a lot of time.
Fortunately, software platforms like Shopify and ARTA ease DTC seller pain points by automating many repetitive processes. Automation tools quickly provide quotes, booking confirmations, and customer shipment updates. This frees up staff time so you can provide a better customer experience and grow your business.
4. Provide consistent messaging through social media & multichannel sales
90% of consumers who regularly use multiple devices frequently switch between them. Customers who engage with a brand on their tablet at breakfast may continue reading on their computer at work and finally purchase on their smartphone at night. Multichannel or omnichannel sales create a steadfast and consistent customer experience through diverse channels.
These channels include various touch points like websites, mobile shopping, social media, in-person interactions, and more. Marketers whose brand campaigns were diversified over three or more channels generated a 494% greater order rate than marketers whose campaigns were restricted to a single channel. This reveals just how essential consistent messaging is to a smooth buyer experience.
5. Strengthen buyer experience through video and augmented reality
Seeing how a product works and visualizing the benefits can be a major selling point. With video and augmented reality, marketing strategies are increasingly appealing to our visual sense. 63% of YouTube users reported purchasing a brand’s product after seeing a video ad on YouTube.
The ability of AR (augmented reality) to digitally project how furniture or artwork will look in a buyer’s home makes the medium remarkably supportive during product discovery. Sellers of unique and rare items can employ AR to help buyers visualize how an item will look in their home before purchase to encourage follow-through.
Buyers receive a better customer experience with AR-supported platforms and engage with these visual projections almost 50% more than normal images, making the case for AR use exceptionally strong.
6. Virtual assistant and voice-powered shopping
While voice assistants are a relatively new addition to our daily tech stack, it’s estimated that over one-third of the population uses their virtual assistants regularly, if not daily. The most highly mentioned voice assistant was Alexa, by Amazon, outranking Google’s assistant and Apple’s Siri.
Alexa can be asked to “search for an antique writing desk” or “collectible manuscripts” when the thought strikes, helping make shopping easy and convenient for special items. Marketers who can incorporate more virtual assistant and voice-powered technology will be more accessible and better positioned to maximize sales.
7. Customer experience will remain a major selling point
As the market for unique, highly valuable goods continues to adapt to changing consumer demands, sellers need to leverage innovative technology to meet new expectations. Your customer experience is your opportunity to set yourself apart.
Sellers can amplify their buyer experience while saving time and effort by leveraging automation software to inspire buyers. Innovative technology can provide instant quotes, display shipping costs pre-purchase, confirm bookings, and automate shipment updates through to completion for an ideal post-purchase experience. Great products are abundant, but a top-tier customer experience leaves an impression that lasts. ARTA’s end-to-end fulfillment software enables you to provide the best post-purchase customer experience. Click the link below to learn more about how ARTA can optimize your buyer experience and empower your brand.