Negative feedback is the bane of every multichannel seller’s existence. Whether it’s on Amazon or eBay, getting poor feedback can seriously affect your ability to sell effectively and turn a profit. On the surface, the feedback system is a great idea – one that should reward the best sellers who do a good job. But in reality, it’s open to abuse and is very easy for buyers to leave unfair comments for no reason at all. Worst still, much of the feedback can be the result of shipping and delivery issues that are often outside the control of the seller. But, there are still ways you can try and avoid getting negative feedback when it comes to eCommerce delivery.
Be as efficient as possible with order processing
The first step to avoiding negative feedback is to ensure that your order processing, packing and dispatch methods are as seamless as possible. The faster you can ship an order from your warehouse, the more leeway you have with the actual delivery time.If you promise next-day dispatch, but can actually ship it the same day, you’ll have an extra day to get the order to the customer.To ensure efficiencies in order processing and minimise human error, you should:
Automate orders from every channel, to make sure the right addresses are always included
Connect your inventory and order processing software with shipping and courier services – so prices and delivery labels can be printed automatically
Include smart shipping rules to assign the right postage to each order
All of this can be done with effective multichannel eCommerce software like ChannelGrabber.
Choose your delivery methods wisely
Just like customers choose who to buy from based on seller ratings, you too should do your research when deciding how to ship your products. Look at independent reviews from other sellers to check if a delivery company can meet your requirements and shop around. With new delivery suppliers popping up all the time – and new services introduced – don’t think you’re stuck with one shipping firm.
Check regularly to make sure you’re always using the best possible delivery method. You should also be prepared to use multiple couriers for different products and shipments. If you sell a range of different products – big and small – you might find the Royal Mail is great for some types of packages, whilst DPD is better for others.
Use software like ChannelGrabber to integrate with multiple couriers whilst still managing your orders from one single place, to ensure you stay on top of everything.
Include tracking numbers wherever possible
When you have dispatched an order, if you get any kind of tracking or reference number then be sure to pass this across to the buyer as soon as possible.This shows you have taken care of your requirements and clearly indicates responsibility is with a different company – the delivery company – now. Although it won’t get you off if problems go wrong, it helps customers see you’ve been extremely efficient and done what you can.
ChannelGrabber can help here too: when you dispatch an item through a linked courier, it can send the tracking number directly to your customer on eBay, Amazon or your webstore.
One of the best ways to minimise the possibility of getting negative feedback is to communicate openly and honestly with your customers. Once an order has shipped, tell your customer and explain that it’s now with the courier – but add that if there are any problems, you can try and speak to the courier on their behalf.This puts yourself on the same side as the customer, against the delivery company. If something does go wrong, you have a common enemy, and you can look like the one who is working for the customer.
Issue a refund for shipping (and try to claim it back)
If the worst does happen – you might want to consider issuing a refund for the shipping costs (or a partial product refund) to apologise for the delay.Always try and explain it’s the delivery company’s fault (don’t accept responsibility) but tell the customer you understand, you’re on their side, and you want to try and help with a gesture of goodwill.You can then try and claim the money back from your courier. If you ship regularly with them, they’ll want to keep your business. Ultimately, negative feedback can and will happen. But if you do everything you can to prevent it – and show customers that you are doing this – then they are more likely to be on your side. Maintain good communications, and they are less likely to be angry at you – even if something does go wrong.
And multichannel eCommerce software like ChannelGrabber can help you streamline ordering and shipping – to improve delivery times and avoid negative feedback.