Recently, we sat down with Kerry Duff, our Track Product Manager, to discuss some of the ways retailers are using post-purchase tracking and comms to really change the game when it comes to customer delivery experience. Kerry works with some of the most exciting and dominant retailers in the market, so the conversation included great insight into innovative best practices being adopted right now.

It was a really interesting conversation, especially for those working in delivery, customer experience and post-purchase. Here’s a breakdown of the best clips.

Happy path and unhappy path

One of the most effective ways we see retailers look at the post-purchase journey goes like this:

  • Happy path
  • Unhappy path

This is self-explanatory, but it boils down to a delivery experience that goes to plan and a delivery experience that doesn’t. Many retailers place emphasis on the happy path, which ideally is some variation of …

Dispatched > In transit > Out for delivery > Delivered

But as we all know, this isn’t always the way it goes. In our first video clip, Kerry explains that while it’s important to make sure happy path customers receive their delivery status comms, it’s when the parcel deviates from the ideal path that it’s most important to keep customers in the loop.

Happy paths and unhappy paths.

Unfortunately, we see all too often that the unhappy path is when communication fails. Retailers and carriers often have weaker or delayed unhappy path communications. And when the customer doesn’t know what’s going on, that’s when they call you – and at your own expense. It’s unfair to send your customer into a communication black hole, especially when something isn’t going as expected. That’s the main driver of dissatisfaction and lost loyalty in the post-purchase experience. Of course, the reverse is also true.

87% of consumers said they would trust a brand more if they had communicated the status of the delivery more effectively.

By being proactive and upfront about the unhappy path, retailers can reduce the impact to the customer when things don’t go to plan. This is the best way to turn a bad situation into a good outcome, with a customer that feels looked after.

Proactively reduce WISMO

We touched on it in the section above, that the power to reduce costly WISMO calls is firmly in your hands. This is how retailers are stopping budget leaking through the contact centre, through high wait times, long resolution times, and dropping NPS.

In this next clip, Kerry highlights a few ways retailers are getting on top of those WISMO calls.

Proactively reducing WISMO.

Reducing WISMO is easy to do but only if you spot those exceptions early enough, and your comms and tracking allow the customer to self-serve their WISMO queries. And doing this is exactly how musicMagpie reduced WISMO by 63%.

Branding builds loyalty

A consistent, branded journey is critical. According to Kerry, we’re seeing that branded journeys are top of the priority list for most retailers we speak to, as building brand affinity and loyalty is directly tied to improving the bottom line. Making customers know you, love you and think about you for their next purchase is the only way to survive a recessionary environment.

Immersing customers in the retail brand.

It’s about keeping customers immersed in your brand from start to finish. And it’s not just the comms and the tracking page. You can leave your mark on every piece of copy and creative your customer sees – even shipment states. Share of wallet comes down to who stands out in the crowd.

Customisable shipment states for brand immersion.

Upsell opportunities

Post-purchase communications have an open rate of 70%. When you have an engaged audience, you should ensure you’re capitalising on every possible point of conversion. This is especially true when it comes to tailoring the journey for different customer groups, where many retailers are choosing to show specific item categories, promos or discounts in the high-traffic tracking and comms slots. For example, giving VIP customers the opportunity to browse more luxury items, or offering discounted socks to customers who have just bought shoes.

Upsell opportunities.

We’ve seen that branding your post-purchase journey means you have full control over the content, copy and creative. Of course, this means you have a captive audience for promotions, offers and upsells.

Plus, you can ensure your seasonal promos or campaigns are consistent throughout the full journey: pre-purchase to post-purchase.

Kerry shares how this looks in practice, and what she recommends to Sorted customers.

Conversion optimisation and campaign consistency.

Dashboard dependency

If you’re dependent on your delivery experience dashboard, you’re doing it right. In this next clip, Kerry explains why having a single source of all post purchase delivery status info gives an unparalleled advantage to your teams.

Dashboard uses.

It’s not just about the insight that you look for, it’s the insight that finds you. More crucially, it’s how you respond to it. Here’s some examples of how a quick response to emerging issues can have a positive impact on your customer experience.

Emerging issues.

What do you think?

Hopefully, you’ve found this useful. We’re always looking to share knowledge, best practice and expertise with any retail buffs who find delivery and post-purchase as interesting as we do.

If you want to hear more from Kerry and our team on how to make practical changes to your post-purchase journey (with results), click the link below to get in touch.