CX Infrastructure for E-Commerce Fashion & Apparel

Solving customer problems quickly and effectively has become critical amidst the influx of online shopping, since switching ret..

5
 min. read
May 19, 2021
CX Infrastructure for E-Commerce Fashion & Apparel

Customer experience may not be a new concept, but it has never been more critical for the growth of today’s retailers. The proof is in the numbers: Insights from Salesforce reveal that 84% of customers would consider the experience a company provides to be as important as its products and services. With COVID-19 accelerating the shift towards a digital world, customers have not only become more attentive of the online shopping experience, but they also expect a positive one.

Fashion and apparel companies leave much to be desired there. In its analysis of CX in the fashion industry, Chattermill uncovers that customer service is the largest driver of negative sentiment for online and in-store shoppers. From overwhelming numbers of chatbots to lackluster guidance from support personnel, customers have to put up with service that's lackluster or inaccessible altogether.

This happens when the employees responsible for building products and brand messaging are disconnected from the customers they serve. To thrive in a market where experience is key, today's companies must invest in their digital CX efforts and drive customer-led business outcomes accordingly. With that said, we've discovered five key benefits of implementing a unified CX infrastructure for fashion and apparel brands:

🔁 Close Internal Feedback Loops with Ease

Solving customer problems quickly and effectively has become critical amidst the influx of online shopping, since switching retailers is now as simple as typing in a different URL. Retailers looking to remain competitive must put insights from their support teams into the hands of stakeholders who are best equipped to act on that information. Luckily, a single infrastructure for customer-led growth has made it easier than ever to do so. With a unified platform to share customer problems and understand their multi-system context, CX teams can effortlessly collaborate with internal teams to reach the prompt resolutions that shoppers expect.

💸 Curb Returns with Product Improvements

Today’s shoppers return 30 to 40 percent of the clothing and footwear they buy online, which is costing fashion retailers billions of dollars every year. It's time for the industry to develop new ways to reduce returns, and this effort starts with creating products that meet the customer's expectations. Here's where CX infrastructure comes in: A seamless connection with support personnel will provide product designers the unfiltered customer feedback they need to turn pain points into opportunities. Whether it be a different fabric or an inclusive sizing option, using the voice of the customer to guide product iteration is critical for protecting retailers' bottom lines.

🤝 Hold Your Vendors Accountable

Between quickly-changing fashion trends and a limitless variety of products, apparel, and fashion retailers often have more complex supply chains than other industries. That’s why they must evaluate each facet of the manufacturing process and manage it effectively. With a CX platform that puts the scope of each customer's problem into perspective, retailers will find it easier than ever to decide when they need to engage 3rd party vendors in their product improvement process. It's in this sense that support tickets have the potential to inspire positive change from the top of the supply chain and drive revenue in the long term.

🖥️ Drive Excellent User Experiences Online

A website with a poor user experience is no different than a disorderly storefront—both drive away customers looking for an effortless checkout process. To put this idea into perspective, consider the following scenario: A sales clerk for a brick-and-mortar retailer notices that in the week following the store's reconfiguration, each customer who bought a belt from him had to ask where the belts were located beforehand. He then explains to the store manager that customers can't find the belt display for themselves. Once the manager decides to move it to a more accessible location, the store sells 50% more belts in the following week and no longer receives questions about where to look.

By recognizing a pattern of customer confusion and collaborating with the manager accordingly, the customer-facing sales clerk could optimize the customer experience in a manner that benefitted the entire business. It should come as no surprise that digital storefronts possess the same potential for improvement. CX leaders in the fashion and apparel industry understand that inspiring micro-interactions, effective product presentation, and easy payment flow all play an important role in encouraging customers to take out their credit cards and place orders. Retailers falling short of the mark will benefit from a one-stop platform for data-backed customer inquiries, since it equips developers with the context necessary to resolve points of confusion in the user journey.

💬 Refine Your Brand Messaging

There’s a lot more that goes into brand messaging than a memorable tagline. Alongside product positioning, brand pillars, and value proposition, your target audience should inspire each piece of content across every channel. That's why a strong alignment with how users really feel about your messaging is essential for crafting engaging experiences. With a single CX infrastructure that puts qualitative user insights at the forefront of each case, marketing and brand teams can tap into the voice of the customer and create more relevant content that boosts bottom-line revenue. It's time to turn customers into advocates by acknowledging them as a part of the brand narrative.

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