Life is full of myths, and one of the great developmental challenges is learning to separate facts from fiction. This applies to all areas of life, including online retail shopping.
If you’re an online retailer, you probably know that there are some shoppers out there who are nervous to buy online because of myths they have heard about internet shopping. You can help win these customers over by meeting them at your store’s virtual doors and promptly correcting those misunderstandings.
Below are some common myths of online shopping that you should be aware of and some ideas for how you can put your customer’s fears to rest.
Myth #1: In-person stores are easier to navigate.
When you’re designing your website, it’s in your best interest to spend some time on your search options. Make sure that your search pages load quickly, completely, and offer multiple filters to help your customers narrow down their searches. Also, make sure that your search menu is easily accessible from every page, whether your customer is shopping on a stationary or mobile device.
If you have a brick-and-mortar store, make sure that you have accurate store layouts included on your website. When a customer searches for an item, give the location where they can find it in their preferred physical store as well. This gives them choices and creates a convenient continuity between your different selling platforms.
Myth #2: I’ll have my identity stolen if I shop online.
This is a legitimate customer concern that has gotten a lot of airtime in recent years due to several security breaches at large corporations. Though customers should always be wary when inputting their personal information, online shopping doesn’t automatically mean identity theft. To ease shoppers’ worries, there are a few things you can do:
- Use secure, third-party financial software: Software such as PayPal and Google Wallet offer additional security for your customers. They also keep you from having any direct contact with your customers’ personal information, which gives you some liability protection.
- Invest in secure servers: Customers will be looking for the key icon at the top of your webpage that shows you are a trusted site. They will also be looking for the “https” at the front of your web address because it promises greater security.
Myth #3: I won’t get the same level of customer service if I order online.
This myth can be dispelled only if you put in the extra time and effort on your end. It’s true that some online-only websites offer horrible customer service, but that doesn’t mean your company has to be one of them. Funnel your energy into an incredible customer service team that will jump at the chance to help your customers. Shoot for short hold times and quick responses. Having a top-notch customer service team will help build a relationship of trust that will keep customers coming back to your business.
If you’re worried about how much offering free shipping and returns is going to cost you, know that roughly 80% of consumers are more likely to buy again if returns and refunds are simple. Consider offering a “return in-store” option to help counteract free return shipping costs. Having fantastic products and customer service policies that go above and beyond is almost guaranteed to get you loyal customers.
You can help debunk prevalent online shopping myths through strategic business moves. Always be alert of things that may be holding your customers back from pushing the purchase button, and seek to address these concerns.