Amid today’s fast and volatile markets, it is crucial for E-commerce companies to have great customer experience wherein consumers, especially in emerging markets, have multiple platforms to choose from.
However, there are some misunderstandings between e-commerce platforms and consumers that must be overcome in order to achieve seamless CX.
1.Tech vs. shopping experience
To provide a great experience, it is important to understand what is the ultimate target of most customers on e-commerce websites. From our work in emerging markets, most customers care about product and price rather than a flawless and superb app or user experience. This is difficult as most e-commerce companies hire tech talents and not dedicated retail or consumer talents and leave the product quality, maintenance and delivery in the hand of 3rd parties. It is even outsourced to marketplace sellers and 3PL (3rd party logistic) as a platform we still have the end-to-end responsibility for a great customer experience. At the end of the day people want to buy a decent or good product they can use, rather than having a flawless online experience.
2.The human factor
In emerging markets like Vietnam and Indonesia, the human factor of a customer experience is often highly valued over any automation or tech factors based on the culture and development of these countries. In an e-commerce journey, the only human factors are the delivery service and the issues with product or delivery the customer service (given the fact that bots are not as accepted yet).
Even both services are often outsourced as in the likes of Lazada, Shopee, etc.. It is important to serve this human touch channels well, as they play a pivotal role in influencing the overall experience perception.
3.Short term happiness vs. long term engagement
Most e-commerce platforms rely on massive promotion and voucher programs to attract customers on a daily basis, rather than building a customer serving reputation in the medium or long run. Tiki, a local e-commerce player in Vietnam (No. 3 in terms of volume and sales behind regional players Lazada and Shopee) has the best reputation regarding product quality and reliability in the market due to a higher retail ratio (own products in the warehouse) and 28 days return policy which is double than its competitors. Tiki was experiencing a stable growth in the market and build itself a customer base especially for higher priced electronic and household items.
For us at Asia PMO, we would like to emphasize the real reason why people go online shopping, which is a convenient way to receive great products for decent prices. While tech is enabling that, we need to make sure that the end-to-end experience from search and order to check-out and delivery is consistent and smooth, even multiple 3rd parties could be involved. Having a Customer Experience team and measuring the feedback of clients throughout the entire customer journey is essential to thriving as an e-commerce business.
Carsten Ley is the Founder of Asia PMO (asiapmo.com) a management consulting firm based in East Asia focused on agile business transformation. This includes agile management and goal-setting by OKRs as well utmost customer and employee experience focus.
Based on his work as VP Customer Experience to Lazada (Alibaba Group) and as a CX Manager in Home Credit, he and his team has led and implemented CX projects for H&M Online Global, European International School, Milano Coffee Vietnam, and MIT Myanmar, among others. He was chosen CX Global Influencer 2020 & 2021.1
To know more about the ecommerce growth prospects, catch industry experts from the ASEAN region at the Future Internet Summit.
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