Deflecting WISMO Requests with Self-service & Automation

by: Zain Alami06/19/2023

Quick Summary Dealing with a large number of WISMO requests not only strains your customer services team and lengthens their response time, but also reduces hard-to-earn customer satisfaction. Develop a strategic plan to manage WISMO requests that incorporates self-service resources and automation to zap overflowing inboxes and give customers a supercharged experience that boosts brand affinity.

Amidst the pandemic chaos, merchants around the world have been grappling with major disruptions in their supply chains. And just when experts predicted things would stabilize by 2023, along came the geopolitical crisis to add more fuel to the fire!

The stakes are high, and businesses are feeling the impact in different ways. It's a challenging time, but it's also an opportunity for brands to recognize the vulnerability of their supply chains and get ready for the unpredictable rollercoaster ride. 

After all, in a world where 60% of global consumers expect lightning-fast delivery (as revealed in the 2021 Shopify eCommerce Market Credibility Study), merchants are pressured into rethinking their reliance on a single source and getting creative with inventory management. Sure, it might mean some short-term expenses, but it's all about building more flexible supply chains that can weather the turbulence of today's crazy logistics landscape.

According to Shopify/Ipsos Commerce Trends Study, 66% of businesses expect supply chain issues to get even worse in 2023 and 68% say the current supply chain crisis is negatively impacting their ability to fulfill customer demand. 

However, consumer demands aren't waiting for supply chains to recover which is why “Where’s My Order?” is naturally the most asked question in the realm of eCommerce. 

What is WISMO? And Why It Matters?

Imagine you're eagerly awaiting a package, and the days seem to stretch on forever. You start to wonder, "Where Is My Order?" (aka WISMO). It's that burning question that customers can't help but ask when their package takes longer than expected to arrive.

Now, picture them on a quest for answers, embarking on a journey through your customer support channels. They might pick up their phone and dial your support hotline, hoping for a swift resolution. Alternatively, they might type away furiously, firing off an email or diving into your help center in search of clues. And if you're on social, they might even take their quest public, venting their frustration and seeking answers on your Facebook business page or Instagram account.

That wouldn’t look nice on you as a business, would it? 

The reality is, extended shopping times aren't the sole culprit behind the surge in WISMO requests. Half-done order confirmation emails, unclear delivery dates, and hiccups with tracking codes can also leave customers in the dark and feeling frustrated - leading to higher WISMO requests. 

Dealing with a large number of WISMO requests not only strains your customer services team and lengthens their response time, but also reduces hard-to-earn customer satisfaction.

By developing a strategic plan to manage WISMO requests that incorporates self-service resources and automation, eCommerce merchants zap those overflowing inboxes and give their customers a supercharged experience that ultimately boosts brand affinity.

How to Deflect WISMO?

  • Enhance Transparency and Communication:

To proactively address WISMO requests, merchants must practice radical transparency. Starting off with the basics, merchants should provide customers with detailed order confirmation emails that include essential information such as order number, items purchased, shipping address, and estimated delivery timeframe. Ensure that the confirmation clearly communicates the next steps and sets accurate expectations. If there are expected delays or issues with an order, proactively reach out to customers to provide updates and alternative solutions if applicable. Keep them informed about the status of their order and provide realistic timelines for resolution.

A shipping policy can go to great lengths in setting a tone of trust between your brand and its customers. When formulating your shipping policy, ensure that it incorporates critical information such as order processing time, estimated delivery timeframes, potential service disruptions, and any relevant disclaimers. Consider showcasing this policy prominently on various pages, such as product detail pages, cart pages, FAQs, and your help center, to provide customers with easy access to important shipping-related details and enhance their overall shopping experience.

  • Offer Real-time Tracking Capabilities: 

When customers can easily track their orders, they feel more in control and informed about the progress of their deliveries. Today, eCommerce shoppers expect to have access to real-time tracking capabilities so they can actively monitor the whereabouts of their packages, estimate the delivery time and plan accordingly. As a brand, it’s crucial to partner with reliable shipping carriers that share the same commitment to providing transparency, managing expectations, and boosting customer satisfaction. 

Merchants might also want to look into branding the tracking page to gain effective control over the influx of WISMO requests, while simultaneously improving the order-tracking experience and upholding consistent brand representation.

  • Automate shipping updates at each post-purchase stage

The initial order confirmation notification not only assures customers that their order has been successfully registered but also sets the foundation for open communication with the brand. As the order moves through various stages, such as packaging, shipping, and dispatch, it's essential to provide regular updates. Automated notifications, whether by email or SMS, can inform customers when their order is prepared for shipment and when it has been dispatched from your facility. This helps customers track their package's journey and anticipate its arrival.

In addition to routine updates, it's crucial to be proactive in communicating any potential delays or changes to the estimated delivery timeframe. Unexpected situations may arise, such as inclement weather or logistical challenges, which could impact the delivery schedule. By promptly notifying customers of such circumstances, you demonstrate transparency and provide realistic expectations.

  • Enable customers to find answers through Self-Service

Helping your customers get answers via self-service is one of the most cost-effective options to deflect WISMO - also happens to be the most convenient option for your customers.  Direct your customers to real-time order tracking in your chat widget, Help Center, or FAQ page, to ensure that customers get an answer before a WISMO ticket gets created.  

At Avex we partner with Gorgias, a complaint management and customer service solution that helps businesses of all sizes streamline processes related to ticket management, customer engagement, reporting, and more on a centralized platform. One of the key features we utilize for our clients is enabling the self-service portal on their chat widget to offer a seamless customer experience that puts the control in the hands of customers. By providing this convenient feature, merchants not only enhance customer satisfaction but also reduce the workload on their support team, allowing them to focus on more complex inquiries and provide personalized assistance where needed.

Another great way to help eCommerce merchants deflect WISMO through self-service is the incorporation of a well-developed FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page or knowledge base. This dedicated section of your website should address common inquiries related to order status, delivery times, return policy, and potential delays. Organize the information in a clear and intuitive manner, making it easy for customers to navigate and locate the answers they need. 

Overall, the post-purchase journey is a critical phase where ecommerce brands have the opportunity to solidify their relationship with customers, enhance their reputation, and drive long-term success. By prioritizing this phase and ensuring a seamless experience, brands can foster customer loyalty, drive repeat purchases, and differentiate themselves in a competitive market.

During the discovery phase of our projects, the team at Avex formulate a thorough understanding of the brand’s pressing needs and pain points. We then recommend solutions that are tailored to meeting the merchant’s goals - ensuring a smooth and friction-free customer journey from the beginning to the conversion and beyond.

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