Companies have rushed to embrace social media marketing, but there's
more to social media than marketing.
Increasingly, whether companies
like it or not, consumers expect companies to respond to customer
service inquiries submitted via social channels like Twitter and
Unfortunately, it currently appears that companies are generally more
adept at social marketing than they are at social customer service.
If we get bad customer service online, we vote with our feet. We stop doing business with the company in question, or take action against it. We call it out on Facebook, Twitter and (in the famous case of United Airlines) we notoriously write songs about it.
Although most brands use social media to market themselves, relatively few provide really excellent customer service.
Here are my top five tips for getting customer service right on Facebook...
While more and more retailers are using online video, there are still plenty of sites which could use it to improve their product pages.
I've been looking at some examples of best practice from retailers that use video on their product pages.
A new m-commerce benchmark study rates the ASOS mobile website, which we reviewed last year, as the best among those of 16 UK retailers.
This is the verdict of eDigital Research's latest mCommerce Benchmark study, which uses mystery shopper surveys to assess the customer experience for websites viewed on smartphones.
Fashion retailer ASOS launched a mobile site recently, just in time for the Christmas shopping season.
Like M&S and John Lewis, ASOS has opted for a site rather than an app to broaden its reach on mobile, and in response to the number of visits and orders from mobile users.
To coincide with the release of our Product Pages Best Practice Guide, I've been looking around for examples of excellent pages from e-commerce sites.
Not every page in this list is perfect, but they all contain great examples of features that have been used to showcase and sell products, such as great use of video and imagery, presentation of product features, and user reviews.
The marked and continuing growth reported by online fashion retailers demonstrates the potential e-tailing holds in times when the high street is suffering.
The e-commerce industry body IMRG reports that online sales of clothing, shoes and accessories were up by 18% from Dec 2008 – 2009, and that fashion e-tailers were the leaders in the UK online market.
By taking the notion of online retailing one step further and going international, the opportunities for growth for the retailer are taken to a whole new level.
A new study of online retailers in the UK suggests that, thanks to the ability to offer a 'seamless and consistent' customer experience both online and offline, multichannel retailers have the edge over pure plays.
In the eDigital Research Benchmark study, which used mystery shoppers to look at 58 UK e-commerce sites, found that multichannel retailers dominate the top 20, with only three spots occupied by pure plays.
So why is this?
Just 26% of retailers in the UK have a Twitter account, and 24% a Facebook page, and most are not making the most of these, according to a new study.
The E-commerce Social Media Report from dotCommerce looks at the social media activities of 100 retailers in the UK, large and small, and finds room for improvement.
While the study does contain some useful stats on Facebook and blogging, I'm going to take a look at how retailers are using Twitter...
The link between retail and publishing has always been strong. A product promoted in print sells products that are available online or in store.
Thanks to online, the link is getting stronger, and now the lines are becoming blurred, as retailers become publishers and publishers begin to move into retail.