As you move your inventory online, how you work with customers has everything to do with your success. Online shoppers move fast. Their expectations are high, and they are typically tech-savvy. To help you gain more from this vast source of potential customers, we have outlined a few simple actions that will help boost the bottom line.
The simplest – but most critical – action is to monitor your online store and your social media channels for potential buyers, at least once a day, if not more often. Failing to respond to requests for information can mean losing the sale. Neilson reports that the average consumer takes only 19 seconds to decide on a purchase.
Response Time Matters
If a new buyer asks a question about a piece, they are interested. The faster you respond to an inquiry, the happier they are. Just like new customers who walk into your shop, the first contact sets the stage for a buy. That random request could be from anyone – including a seasoned collector, or a designer with a huge project that could develop into multiple sales.
Online Customer Personality
Online shoppers like a “human touch.” Your brand is your reputation and standing in the antique community – and your unique personality. Just be yourself in all your online communications, and you can’t go wrong.
Be aware of cultural differences as much as possible. If you are unsure, you can access a wealth of information by searching on Google. For example, if the potential buyer is in Japan, you can find helpful information by Googling “how to work with a Japanese buyer.” An American buyer may respond positively to a casual greeting, like “Hi there!” but a buyer from a more conservative culture will be more responsive to a respectful, formal tone.
Hug Your Haters
We found a great read that you may find helpful in dealing with online customers who post unfavorable reviews, called Hug Your Haters, How to Embrace Complaints and Keep Your Customers.
For some good tips on social media and customer service, we like this article from Business News Daily: How to Use Social Media for Customer Service.
It’s the Little Things…
When a new client feels appreciated, they are more likely to become a repeat buyer. Include a handwritten thank you with the shipment. If you have another piece you think they may love, invite them to a private preview before it goes online and offer a discount. It’s the little things that make you stand out from the rest and build relationships.
Selling Your Pieces Online: The Ronati Team Is Here to Help
At Ronati, we are here to support our dealers in the online sales arena. Becoming familiar with the process takes a little time, but you have a steadfast resource with the Ronati team. Need help? We are interested in you, your business and helping you succeed with online sales in every way we can. If you have questions, no matter how small, reach out to us!