Customer journeys today no longer end with a purchasing decision. Given that 65% of a company’s revenue comes from existing customers, getting post-purchase customer experience right is crucial.
The traditional ‘marketing funnel’ model doesn’t strictly apply anymore. Modern customer journeys are far more complex. And marketers are losing out on untapped ROIs by not giving sufficient attention to customer interests after purchases are made.
To do this, using the right post-purchase customer experience platform is key.
Table of contents
- What is post-purchase customer experience?
- Why is post-purchase customer experience important?
- Shipment tracking and order management
- Customer feedback
- Customer service
- Customer engagement and retention
- The future of post-purchase customer experience
What is post-purchase customer experience?
Simply put, post-purchase customer experience is the sum total of all brand-customer interactions after the time of purchase. It encompasses all aspects of customer experience after a product or service has been bought. Confirmation emails, refunds and returns, customer support, and satisfaction feedback are all essential touchpoints of the post-purchase customer journey.
Why is post-purchase customer experience important?
Customer journeys are getting more sophisticated by the day. Touchpoints have become more non-linear and scattered. Amongst these, post-purchase customer engagement is critical for the following reasons, according to a survey by Invesp:
- Acquiring a new customer is 5X more costly than retaining an existing one
- The probability of selling to existing customers is 60-70%, whereas for new prospects it is 5-20%
- A 5% increase in customer retention translates to a 25-95% increase in profits
Post-purchase customer experience tools that help you delight your customers
We now know why focusing on a post-purchase marketing strategy is essential. Let’s look at some of the tools that delight your customers at different stages of the post-purchase journey:
#1. Shipment tracking and order management
Customer expectations are rising — 97% of online customers expect to be in the loop during the order fulfillment process. With eCommerce and ‘buy in-store and get it delivered at home’ methods becoming the norm, customers demand more transparency.
Giving buyers the information they need every step of the way meets customer expectations. But businesses can also go that extra mile to provide a seamless order fulfillment experience that leaves an impression. It reduces the chances of losing customers to competitors and builds brand advocacy too.
In addition, focusing on the order management aspect of the post-purchase customer experience is cost-effective. With a cluttered and messy order fulfillment process, customer complaints pile up. In the long run, these might be difficult to deal with, and may even hurt your bottom line substantively.
If you’re wondering which post-purchase customer experience platform to use at this stage, we’ve got you covered. Here are our picks:
Narvar is a post-purchase eCommerce platform that provides order management services. With prominent Fortune 500 companies in their customer roster, Narvar places its focus mainly on on-brand shipping, tracking, delivery, and returns.
Here are some testimonials of customers who have leveraged the tool to deliver a positive customer experience after purchase:
“In my experience, Narvar provides some of the best post-purchase customer services out there. Reliable estimates and tracking make it easy for customers to see where their items are, and get help should they need it. Overall, Narvar has fantastic services that many companies can benefit from.” – Bryan Philips, Inmotion Marketing
“Narvar has provided our customers with great service and has helped us turn one-time customers into repeat buyers. It gives customers efficient tracking of their orders via notifications and enhances their experience of product returns and customer care. Moreover, this platform also records customer’s shipping experience and increases their ability to repurchase.” – Liam Mills, Ecommerce Expert & CEO at ValueHunta
AfterShip is another post-purchase customer service platform tailored towards eCommerce businesses. Centered around order tracking services, AfterShip allows brands to match customer expectations regarding delivery timelines and shipment visibility.
Ecommerce customers check their order status 6-8 times on average after making a purchase. And 74% of customers expect their orders to arrive on the estimated delivery dates. Ensuring that orders actually end up at the customer’s doorstep on time creates a lasting positive first impression. Brands can leverage this post-purchase consumer behavior for providing seamless order fulfillment.
Here’s how AfterShip helped a brand provide a smooth post-purchase experience to their customers:
“One of the ways AfterShip is improving our customer post-purchase experience is through the launch of its new AI-powered Delivery Date Prediction tool. By utilizing AI and big data, it can more accurately predict on-time delivery compared to unreliable carrier estimated time of arrival (ETA).” – Mark Karges, Account Director, PressFriendly
Malomo is primarily a shipment tracking and order management platform that deals with post-purchase customer experience in eCommerce. Additionally, it offers customer service-related solutions as well.
Users of the platform can provide a streamlined refunds, returns, and exchange process that is hassle-free for customers. Malomo’s promise of two-day returns matches customer expectations regarding quick delivery times, and also builds brand trust.
“The best post-purchase customer experience platform I’ve come across is Malomo. It helps e-commerce brands generate revenue and engagement by offering an enhanced and interactive shipment tracking experience.” – Andrew Priobrazhenskyi, Marketing Coordinator at DiscountReactor.com
Fyle is an expense management software to offer real-time expense tracking on existing business credit cards. This means, businesses can now get notified of credit card spend seconds after their Visa or Mastercard has been swiped. Finance teams can also collect receipts in real-time via text. With Fyle, you no longer need to depend on bank feeds to reconcile card expenses as you now have access to real-time feeds.
“My main focus was to make the end-user experience easy and efficient – and that was made possible with Fyle.” – Brad Salter, CFO at TST Construction.
Billdu is one of the best invoicing apps for small businesses. It allows you to create professional-looking invoices, delivery notes, estimates, purchase orders and other documents needed to grow your business. With features like automatic payment reminders, analyzing invoices, online payments, recurring invoices and expense management. Optimize your cash flow with an easy invoicing solution, manage customer relationships, accept payments, send invoices, and so much more. Try the top-rated smart invoice app and create invoices for your customers in a few seconds.
“Very helpful! Made my invoicing simple and efficient, no longer spending ages trying to find my invoice template or worrying if my details were correct. Love the ability to send invoices using links, makes emailing super quick! Would recommend it.” – Lucy Stattmann
#2. Customer feedback
Asking your customers to leave feedback is an excellent way to show that you value what they have to say. It’s important to get the messaging right — customers shouldn’t feel like they’re forced to do something tedious. Rather, convincing them that their feedback will have a real impact on the product roadmap is the way to go.
Reviews and ratings can be a powerful asset for marketing efforts since they use the voice of the customer. It builds social proof, increases visibility from an SEO standpoint, and makes your brand stand out for prospects. For example, Crescent Canna went above and beyond by adding close to 1k real reviews from their customers on their website.
Here are some post-purchase tools that allow you to do the same:
- Shopper Approved
Shopper Approved is a leading customer review and ratings tool that brands can use to collect ratings from customers. Users can automate and scale the review collection process and leverage them on different platforms like Trustpilot and Google.
“Our business uses Shopper Approved for our post-purchase customer feedback. The advantage of Shopper Approved is that it allows us to choose where the reviews go. It makes it extremely easy to build up reviews and trust across multiple platforms so you get a lot more exposure no matter where the potential customer is looking for feedback.” – Jeff Moriarty, Marketing Manager
- Beaconstac’s QR Code solution
QR Codes are becoming more popular by the day in the wake of COVID-19.
They’re a powerful Phygital marketing channel that can digitize feedback collection processes from the physical world. Be it on product packaging or for on-premise feedback collection, they can be utilized to provide a seamless customer experience after purchase.
With Beaconstac’s ratings/feedback QR Code, users get directly linked to a questionnaire/review/ratings template upon scanning. You can link to relevant review platforms based on industry too. With the interactive forms/feedback feature, users can ask customers personalized questions based on their previous answers.
- Amazon Integrated Customer Feedback
E-commerce giant Amazon offers an integrated customer feedback system on their website. This allows affiliate sellers to reach out to customers and build relationships with buyers. Asking about their post-purchase experience opens up a channel of brand-customer communication essential for building trust.
“As an Amazon affiliate seller, we use the platform to provide our customers with a positive post-purchase customer experience. After a week, we message the client through Amazon about their product experience and if there’s any scope for improvement. This opens up communication between the client and us and helps in our customer retention and satisfaction.” – Tony, CEO at Instrumental Global
Stamped is another ratings gathering platform that allows brands to leverage user-generated content to stand out. Brands can boost trust through customizable, automated review collection workflows, and extract valuable business insights from reviews by leveraging AI. They can also understand post-purchase customer experience better through the Net Promoter Score (NPS) App.
“We use Stamped to automate review collection from our customers after they make a purchase. They can write a review, leave a picture or even do a video on the product. Before Stamped, we were getting a couple of reviews a week. Now we get over 500 reviews per month. We also see that products with the highest conversion rates are the ones with the highest reviews.” – Brian Anderson, My Supplement Store
- Facebook Groups
Online communities are a cost-effective customer engagement channel, especially at the post-purchase stage.
Creating a Facebook community for your brand is a great way to organically collect customer feedback. Nearly 1.8 billion users actively use Facebook Groups every month.
Engaging in discussions around the product gives a customer the impression that you value their post-purchase experience. It helps with customer retention and also yields actionable feedback for product iteration and improvements.
“One of the best platforms that we’ve used to explore and enhance our customer experience is Facebook Groups. It allows us to have a look at our customer satisfaction scores closely. We then use these insights to improve our software.” – Maya Levi, Marketing Manager at ReturnGO
“While Lawmatics has its own user feedback collection system, the best post-purchase customer experience platform that we have used so far is Facebook Groups. We have an ‘unofficial’ user community on Facebook which has 500+ members. Through the group, we can see how we’re doing as a CRM platform and think of ways to improve based on our customers’ post-subscription comments.” – Matt Spiegel, Founder & CEO, Lawmatics
Reviews.io is another leading customer feedback collection tool that can be added to your post-purchase marketing arsenal. Ease of review collection and capabilities to leverage them on multiple platforms have been stand-out features for their users.
“We really love the Reviews.io platform. Customers receive an email where they can provide reviews, and do not have to wait for a security code to be verified. People simply do not have time for something like this. It’s one of the easiest platforms to use in the market. And our clients agree!” – Matt Schmidt, Co-Founder at Diabetes Life Insurance Solutions
#3. Customer service
A bad customer service experience drives customers away — and that too quickly. According to Microsoft research, nearly 58% of American consumers are likely to switch companies because of poor customer service.
Going the extra mile to provide memorable customer support yields exceptional returns. These take the form of loyal customers who will be strong advocates for your brand.
Also, customer experience today is a huge driver of growth for companies. This can be leveraged to the maximum during the post-purchase customer journey as well.
Here are some of the tools that enable companies to provide great quality support to their customers:
Conversica’s Conversation Success solution uses the power of AI to automate brand-customer interactions for customer support. The virtual assistants that come with the solution provide prompt and personalized responses to customer queries. Companies can then leverage the benefits of automation and reduction in headcount costs to scale.
“The average customer success manager spends almost 40 hours a month sending emails to customers, overseeing over 50 accounts, and managing over $2M in annual recurring revenue. This makes it practically impossible to give every customer the same level of attention. Smarter than your average chatbot, Conversica’s virtual assistants act as your company’s representatives and help drive business outcomes.” – Edward Lin, Account Manager at Merritt Group
ViiBE is a video-first customer support tool that customers can use to raise tickets and resolve queries. Given the ease of having more visibility into the customer’s problem via video, post-purchase customer support becomes faster and efficient.
“ViiBE is a video assistance technology without download, which can be integrated into all CRMs dedicated to remote technical support centers. It helps companies increase their NPS and customer satisfaction levels.” – Henri de Braquilanges, Customer Success Manager at ViiBE
Acquire is a digital CX platform that allows brands to connect and collaborate with customers through chat, co-browse, and video. The tool is leveraged by leading Fortune 500 brands to make customer support interactions fast, easy and convenient.
“Acquire offers chatbot, live chat, and co-browse to support customers across multiple channels. It enhances the overall post-purchase customer experience.” – Ashwini Dave, Acquire
Ecommerce merchants can leverage the HelpCenter app to provide quick, thorough, and personalized customer service for their buyers.
Customers today want more personalization — giving them a tailored customer support experience can go a long way in improving retention rates. Nearly 80% of customers are more likely to make a purchase with brands that cater personalized experiences.
HelpCenter also centralizes communication from different channels and allows users to leverage automation and other internal tools.
“HelpCenter helps e-commerce merchants provide a smooth customer service experience for their buyers. Shopify store owners can also easily create an informative, easy-to-navigate FAQ page and enable visitors to find answers to the most common questions themselves.” – Renata Liubertaitė, Content Manager at Vertex
- Salesforce Service Cloud
Salesforce Service Cloud is a CRM platform that is primarily focused on customer service and support. It allows service agents to automate different service-related processes, and automate other workflows for more efficiency. Agents work on an intuitive UI with analytics and productivity tools that help them create a positive post-purchase experience for customers.
“Service Cloud is the best post-purchase customer experience platform I’ve ever used. It helps by creating a better experience for service agents, which in turn creates a better experience for customers. A great customer experience starts with a great agent experience.” – Anthony Pica, Marketing Director at Internet Creations
Intercom is a customer communications platform that provides support-specific services like conversational chatbots, business messengers, and reporting. The platform UI is easy to use and has a centralized customer context repository for quick and seamless customer support.
“We use Intercom to manage our entire customer lifecycle. When someone becomes a customer, we can track them through Intercom and depending on what they bought and when, we can easily send follow-up emails and offer them upgrades to a higher plan, remind them that their trial is about to expire, send them special offers when we have discounts, etc.” – Petra Odak, Chief Marketing Officer at Better Proposals
- Optimizely’s B2C Commerce
B2C Commerce by Optimizely uses AI to offer post-purchase customer experience services for digital commerce. The B2C Commerce suite also includes content management to deliver personalized experiences for customers at post-purchase touchpoints.
“Misguided, a fast-growing UK fashion brand, leveraged Optimizely to create a post-purchase experience that resulted in a 33% relative increase in revenue through experimentation and personalization. A particularly successful campaign was targeted at ‘rising star’ customers, those on the cusp of becoming Missguided VIPs based on the number and frequency of purchases as well as site visits.” – Hannah Riffle, Senior Account Executive at PAN Communications
- Salesforce Marketing Cloud
Salesforce Marketing Cloud is a marketing automation platform primarily focused on engagement based on customer journeys. Brands can track the customer path as they buy their product or service and deliver custom messages and personalized content accordingly. They can also create personalized onboarding for their customers, which was a selling point for one user:
“We use the Salesforce Marketing Cloud for enhancing post-purchase customer experience and retention. This platform allows us to create custom journeys to lead customers along the onboarding path so that they’re up and running quickly. A good onboarding journey shows your customers that they’ve made the right decision in choosing you over your competitors.” – Carlos Barros, Marketing Director, Epos Now
Freshdesk is a SaaS CRM platform that allows businesses to manage their entire conversion funnel all within one platform. Centered primarily around delighting customers during the post-purchase customer journey, Freshdesk offers omnichannel support for a fast time-to-value. This is a cost-effective, high-return strategy for customer retention and growth.
“Freshdesk’s email marketing platform provides us with the tools necessary to create and monitor our own contact list. This helps with data analysis and for personalizing our emails to a broader audience. In addition, we’re able to achieve higher levels of customer satisfaction, which in turn aids retention. This will henceforth enhance our brand value.” – Lynda Fairly, Co-Founder at Numlooker
Even though AI technology keeps rising, 75% of customers still prefer human interaction with businesses. CloudTalk brings just that. The company provides cloud-based VoIP telephony software for both inbound and outbound calling. It’s extensively used by support and sales teams.
Their clients, like Mercedes-Benz, Revolute, or Glovo, benefit from a rich palette of 70+ calling features. These include voice, productivity, automation tools, complex statistics, and more. CloudTalk also offers over 40 industry-leading integrations, such as HubSpot, to make work more organized and eliminate routine manual tasks.
CloudTalk grew on us from the very first moment. It met all our requirements – flexibility, scalability, quality of service and an ability to have international numbers. Everyone in the company finds uses for it. From sales to support or onboarding. It allows us to fully customize as we grow. Before we started using CloudTalk, we barely got 7 000 calls per year. Today, it’s almost 120 000. The number of our clients also keeps rapidly increasing.
Pavel Pribis, CEO of Boataround
#4. Customer engagement and retention
Going back to the statistic at the beginning of this post, it’s easier to turn your existing customers into repeat buyers than to acquire new ones. Given that the associated costs are nearly 5X, it’s ideal for brands to focus on customer engagement and retention.
Fully engaged customers contribute a higher share to a company’s bottom line. Based on Gallup’s research, they represent a 23% premium in wallet share, revenue, and profitability over the average customer.
Apart from numbers, this customer pool can also have a positive impact on your business in numerous intangible ways.
If customer engagement at post-purchase touchpoints is deep enough, they will champion your brand on your behalf. They’re also usually the ones that contribute valuable feedback that can improve your product/service. With the right incentives to get customers to engage, you build trust and loyalty. This ultimately adds to your brand value in the long run.
Here are some tools that help you build engagement with existing customers:
Hootsuite is a social media management platform that brands can use to create personalized experiences on social. A recent statistic shows that 71% of millennials feel frustrated by impersonal web content. Curating personalized post-purchase customer experiences can be the X factor that can give your brand the edge.
“Hootsuite helps our brands improve our post-purchase customer experience by providing customers with an easy-to-navigate, personalized website that is aesthetically pleasing and informative. Instead of receiving generic digital communication from the brand, Hootsuite offers custom content based on past purchases.” – Katherine Brown, Marketing Director, Spyic
- Beaconstac’s QR Code solution
As mentioned before, QR Codes are a simple, high-intent gateway to engage your target audience.
Loyalty programs, discount coupons, newsletters, personalized product adoption guides are all QR Code use-cases that increase engagement for a positive post-purchase customer experience.
Pro Tip: Include a QR Code on a receipt to increase post-purchase engagement and revenue through existing customers. You can link the QR Code to your Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, or Facebook handles to help elevate your social media presence.
With Beaconstac’s QR Code solution, you get a comprehensive QR Code platform for creating fully customizable, trackable dynamic QR Codes. You also get integration capabilities that allow you to seamlessly fit other software tools into your workflows.
When it comes to customer engagement specifically, Beaconstac allows you to reach your high-intent customers at the right time. Through Facebook Pixel and Google AdWords integrations, retarget those who scan your QR Codes based on organized online cohorts. All that you need to do is set up your Pixel/AdWords ID through Beaconstac.
Statusbrew streamlines social media communication by bringing conversations from all over social into one unified inbox. With its Engage inbox, you can offer personalized and automated customer support and respond quickly to customer queries. You can automatically get rid of negative comments, trolls, and spam, set up automated replies and assign messages to the right team members. The platform’s Sentiment analysis instantly categorizes each conversation as positive, negative, or neutral while allowing you to set up rules to hide negative comments automatically.
“We’ve struggled to handle hundreds of comments per day manually. We’ve tried lots of platforms, but none of them could handle answering comments on Dynamic Ads…until we found Statusbrew!” -Kimberley Shearer, Head of Marketing, Think Huge Limited
The future of post-purchase customer experience
Customer experience is increasingly becoming a critical driving force for business revenue and growth. According to Forbes, brands that focus on CX see an 80% increase in revenue generation. And with nearly 73% of customers making purchase decisions based on customer experience, it’s important to do it right.
In particular, the post-purchase aspects of customer experience can yield disproportionate returns — as we had seen earlier. Customer expectations are only going to rise with each year. And with the onset of interactive physical-to-digital technologies like AR and QR Codes, brands that cater unique experiences to customers using these channels will stand out the most.