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Service Elements Before the Sale

One of the most important elements on an Commerce site is serving the customer. To the eCommerce manager, the term is not "customer service management" but customer relationship management. An eCommerce manager's prime responsibility is to the customer, and a successful eCommerce web site serves the customer before, during, and after the sale.

An important element of serving the customer before the sale is interacting with the first-time visitor to your storefront. He may know very little about your company and the products or services it sells, yet he's confronted with an entire web site of information to make a buying decision.

A good way to welcome a new visitors to your storefront and explain to them why they should buy from you is to offer a "first-time visitor orientation." This should be a very visible icon on the home page of your storefront that links to a page offering a brief description of what the visitor should expect as a customer. Include all of the following:

  • Customer service contact information
  • A satisfaction guarantee and any warrantees or price-match offers
  • Return policy
  • Details on how orders are handled and shipping speed
  • Explanation of how to track orders
  • Reassurance that your site is secure for shopping
  • Link to the FAQ page
  • Directions for fast placement of an order
  • First-time customer specials
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