For the past several years small businesses are increasingly starting e-commerce businesses, thanks to platforms such as WooCommerce. Yes, practically any brick and mortar store can now reach out to a global audience with their business products and services through an eCommerce store. In this eCommerce revolution WooCommerce, the eCommerce platform of WordPress has the largest share. As of now, more than 30% of eCommerce websites are run on WooCommerce.
WooCommerce being the extension of WordPress for eCommerce store offers unmatched flexibility, scalability and ease of use. Without missing on any substantial value that we normally expect from modern eCommerce stores, it provides optimum flexibility and customization options. Mobile app developers can easily utilize WooCommerce to deliver custom mobile commerce apps with the same degree of flexibility in design and feature set. This alone made WooCommerce so popular platform for eCommerce stores around the world.
While we are here to explain the key ways you can boost customer experience of eCommerce stores, we must begin by describing the pros and cons of this platform.
WooCommerce is globally popular as an eCommerce platform for a wide array of reasons. It comes as a complete eCommerce solution with a flexible and scalable range of customization options to build a brand store with a unique look, feel, features and value proposition.
- WooCommerce comes as a free and readily available plugin for any WordPress user.
- It allows any online store to showcase an unlimited number of products and product-specific attributes.
- WooCommerce offers a completely responsive design and development options to fit any screen and devices.
- WooCommerce offers unmatched flexibility and scalability options for businesses of different sizes and niches.
- WooCommerce us highly customizable with a rich reserve of plugins to integrate any feature of choice as per user needs.
- Besides offering intuitive user interface options with ready to use themes and plugins, bringing more customization with little tweaks in child themes is easier.
- It offers all the required features of a modern eCommerce website ranging from the ratings and reviews to custom email and notification support to intelligent chatbots for in-store support and communication.
- If you already have a WordPress website, it takes no time and difficulty to create a storefront with ready to integrate WooCommerce plugin.
In spite of the tremendous popularity and a whole range of unique advantages, the platform has its dark side as well. Let us have a quick look at the cons of WooCommerce as an eCommerce platform that critics normally refer to.
- WooCommerce unlike Shopify and a few others do not come with free hosting.
- WooCommerce is actually a plugin available only for WordPress sites. This means if you already have a site on other CMS platform and still want to use WooCommerce you need to switch to WordPress first.
- For a non-WordPress user considering all the troubles and costs needed to bear to get the store alive, it can be a little expensive.
Three Ways to Customise Customer Experience
Obviously, just making your eCommerce store Live is just a beginning that won’t guarantee any success or business conversion. You need to build your store for your target customers, and that involves customization of several design and development aspects. These customization and value additions ultimately will help your store to deliver better customer experience resulting in steady growth.
Here we are going to explain briefly three ways to customize customer experience with your WooCommerce store.
1. Custom WooCommerce Store Design
The first and foremost priority should be customizing your eCommerce store design with all the available technical help from your WooCommerce platform. You can do it in the following ways.
- Using a plugin: In case you want to limit your customization only to small changes and modifications in the CSS, you can do the same with just a plugin. For example, the Code Snippets plugin will help you adding snippets to your eCommerce site to showcase a brief description of the site in search ranking.
- Using custom a child theme: In case you want to bring changes to the stylesheet or CSS, you can use a child theme that will help you preserving custom design elements. A custom child theme further can help to add a layer to give priority to your custom code and preserving the same at future updates.
2. An intelligent Chatbot
An intelligent chatbot helping customers of your eCommerce store with easily accessible live chat function can be a great way to boost customer experience and create business conversion opportunities. While using WooCommerce, you have specific plugins for integrating chatbots or live chat function.
And according to the HubSpot research report, 71% of users prefer chatbots precisely for solving some problems rapidly. The same report also says that 56% of users like messaging to avail customer service instead of making calls.
Some automated chatbot plugins are intelligent enough to use machine learning technology to get used to customer behavior, preferences and earlier inputs and create a knowledge base that can be utilized for answering specific customer queries and questions. These chatbots can improve over time by adapting to customer questions.
When you are using chatbot for your WooCommerce website, you can use the same for a variety of reasons. Let us mention here some prominent use cases of chatbots for various industries.
- Food ordering: In food ordering app chatbots are increasingly getting popular to allow customers to get in touch in real time with the customer service and get informed about the order status.
- Product Suggestions: When customers know the category of the product but cannot just remember the brand or any specific item, chatbot conversation can help him to get appropriate results.
- Customer Support: For handling all sorts of customer issues and to help customers in the buying process chatbots can pla
y a great role.
3. Personalised Recommendations
According to a recent study by Monetate customers who search for a product after getting a recommendation to have at least 70% higher buying rate. More interestingly, these customers also return to the eCommerce store more frequently.
Finally, an eCommerce store in today’s scenario can only withstand competition by connecting their product recommendations and suggestions with the audience preferences and choices. This is why personalized recommendations became so important an attribute for eCommerce stores of all types and niches.
In WooCommerce you can find a variety of recommendation plugins that continuously update themselves with customer information, product history, view and purchase history to recommend products based on customer preferences.
Do you want to utilize recommendations more effectively for your WooCommerce store? Consider the following tips.
- Showcase your product recommendations more prominently and preferably above the fold. They become doubly effective when shown above the fold.
- Create most popular widgets for recommendations like “Frequently Purchased by Customers” or “Most Popular in the Store” etc. Always showcase the “Best Sellers” at the top of the product page across all categories.
- With the AI-powered recommendation engine, you can deliver more personalized suggestions to individual customers. As the engine by learning from customer behavior will be more informed over time, you can target each customer with more personalized recommendations.
- Apart from utilizing personalized recommendations in your WooCommerce site, also inject those recommendations with emails sent to your target customers to boost business conversion.
4. Voice Interface
Over the years, voice search has emerged as one of the most popular technologies for customers and web marketers. While the buyers prefer voice search for quicker response time and effortless user experience, businesses incorporate voice search in their stores and websites to deliver more rewarding user experience. It makes a win-win situation possible for every stakeholder in the online space. In the years to come, voice search will pave the way for more sophistication in the shopping experience. As voice search is no longer seen as a technology limited to smart-speakers, we can expect more eCommerce stores to embrace it as an active element.
Some latest statistics by sagapixel will reveal the vast impact voice search, and voice eCommerce are going to play for local businesses. All small businesses taking on the opportunities of eCommerce will get great help through voice search. Let us have a look at some of these statistics.
- A whopping 58% of online customers utilized voice search in the last year alone for accessing local business information.
- Around 46% of users who use voice search mainly look for local businesses.
- More than one-fourth of users visit the local business website they found through voice search.
The most significant impact of voice search and voice interface in the eCommerce stores is found through increased customer engagement as they find it an extremely effortless and rewarding experience to make their searches and conversation with the chatbot through voice commands. An increasing number of advanced chatbots with voice interface is coming up to add immense value to the shopping experience. If you are a small business and aspiring to make your eCommerce store with cutting edge features, having a voice interface is something you cannot dispense with.
As the competition among eCommerce stores are getting stiffer and choking, custom shopping experience and personalization seem to hold the biggest push for customer engagement and sales. The above-mentioned ways are the key means to boost customization for WooCommerce stores.
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Juned Ghanchi is co-founder and managed the digital marketing team at IndianAppDevelopers – the mobile app development company in India specialize in Android and iOS platforms. He spends significant time working with the team for driving the mission, vision and objectives of the company.