CRM for Your Ecommerce World
How Do Ecommerce CRM Systems Work?
The burgeoning ecommerce industry has spawned the creation of an entire niche software industry that provides services, tools and automation for the millions of vendors and merchants that sell online. As a result, e-retailers now have more options than ever before with how they manage their inventories, run their online stores, market and remarket and gather business intelligence. At the forefront are ecommerce CRM systems, helping retailers build stronger relationships with customers and improve long-term retention and loyalty.
What are ecommerce CRM systems? How do they work? And how can they help online retailers make the most of every customer interaction? Here’s what you need to know.
Understanding Ecommerce CRM Systems
Unlike CRM of the past, customer relationship management software has changed over the years. These newer systems are designed specifically for online retailers. The goal is to help them make the most of each customer interaction by monetizing the data gathered from ecommerce order activity, customer actions and the data points.
How Ecommerce CRM Systems Integrate
They work by connecting to shopping cart services and marketplaces that retailers sell online via API. This allows the systems to gather data in real-time and create detailed customer profiles. These profiles give retailers a way to add notes, tags, tasks, comments, calendar events and more, while simultaneously tracking things like orders, invoices, tracking numbers, shipments and returns. They connect to these sales channels quickly and most users are ready to start using them within five minutes of connecting them to their accounts.
CRM for ecommerce is a critical part of customer engagement. A key feature called Action Alerts is a powerful growth marketing tool that automates engagement with customers post purchase. These types of alerts work via “triggers” and can be engaged when a customer purchases, returns or has not purchased in a while. Action Alerts send customizable messages to customers regarding an order, a shipment, a return or a comeback message—and can increase cross-sells and upsells as well as suggest recommended products.
Tasks & Team Management
Another key feature of an ecommerce CRM system is Tasks. Think of services like Wunderlist or Slack but integrated into the CRM as a back-office tool. Such tasks help improve customer service and can be assigned to individual customer profiles, complete with things like notes, attachments, tags and due dates. These are helpful tools that improve efficiency and help nurture and sustain relationships.
Another key feature of ecommerce CRM is business intelligence. The robust cross-channel reporting helps retailers better assess their inventory, marketing efficiency, return rate, shipping cost, customer behavior and trends. Using this data, for example, a retailer could cull a list of customers to market a flash sale to, while ignoring customers that have a below average order value or a high return rate. As you might imagine, this type of approach would result in higher average order values on conversions with reduced returns. This is just one way that business intelligence benefits online retailers.
Newer ecommerce CRM systems also integrate with automation services like Zapier. This gives users the ability to add 100s of apps via the Zapier integration. Things like Help Scout or Ring Central, for example, can add notes directly to a customer’s CRM profile, helping the retailer preserve the relationship, respond better to inquiries and resolve disputes in a timely manner.
The Final Scoop
Today’s ecommerce CRM systems are powerful customer relationship building and management tools that no online retailer should be without. They help put a name and face to each order and humanize an informal shopping experience while improving relationships, bettering marketing efforts and helping to secure the loyalty of customers in the long term.
Need Even More Tips?
Take a look at this related article: The Ultimate Guide to Ecommerce CRM Software. It contains just about everything that you would ever need to know about these popular systems, including features, integrations and much more.