Engaging Your Customer

Why not open your web site to customer involvement? The best results come from making customer interaction part of your overall marketing strategy.

What word of mouth does for selling a product or service, online interaction is doing ... just on a larger platform. The online environment is part of the consumer's life now and we want to enhance this social connectivity. Increasing customer engagement will cultivate a community that is passionate about your product, service or company.

Here are a few of the interaction benefits...

  • Improves your company's image
  • You gleam consumer feedback
  • Your web site will be more customer friendly
  • Shoppers pay attention to reviews and comments to guide their purchasing decisions
  • Customer clickthrough rates will rise
  • The amount of time a customer is on your site will increase

These benefits lead to increased sales
Reviews and comments are the most common forms of customer involvement. Other methods includes polls, contests that invite participation, blogs, pictures and video.

What about negative reviews...
These reviews can be a gift. Think of them as an early warning system to spot problems with your product or service. They add credibility to all the reviews on the site. If every review is a glowing testimonial the consumer will suspect that the feedback is fake or only favorable comments are posted.

You will need software or human filters that block inappropriate, profane or untrue posts. It is just part of doing online commerce. Another useful control is to require site visitors to register before they post. With these defenses in place, you'll see the benefits of customer interaction.

Customers are talking about companies online, so you might as well be part of the dialogue.

Use a Free Offer to Engage Your Customer

When you give something away for free on your web site like coupons, whitepapers, case studies, a PDF, a free download or something printable, why not ask for their email address and permission to send to them?

To do this... include an opt-in form on a page where visitors have to go first, before they get to the "free offer" page. Try to get them to double-opt in if you can. Be sure to communicate the benefits of what you'll be sending them and tell them how often you'll be emailing them.

It's a great way to build your email list.

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