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Customer Expectations Have Changed — Here’s What You Can Do

Explore the top 6 ecommerce trends for 2024, from rising sales to SEO essentials and the power of AI and returns for growth.
By Tina Donati
0 min read . By Tina Donati

TL;DR:

  • Ecommerce sales are expected to rise by 8.8% in 2024, presenting new growth opportunities.
  • Longer consideration times mean businesses need to engage customers at every stage of their buying journey.
  • SEO remains crucial for growth, with over half of consumers using search for pre-purchase information.
  • Ethical AI and well-managed returns can boost customer trust and loyalty while driving sales.

Let’s stop with the doom and gloom ecommerce trends and talk about what’s really up: growth.

Yep, you read that right. 

Ecommerce sales are set to soar by 8.8% in 2024, and the digital marketplace is ripe with opportunity.

Sure, we’ve all been budget-conscious for the past year or more—businesses and consumers alike. And we’re not saying you shouldn’t be.

Despite that, there is a ton of opportunity to grow your sales this year. It’s just time to understand how consumer behavior is shifting and how you should adapt to it.

So, what’s changing? We shared six trends to know about below.

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1. Consideration times are longer

There’s no denying that the more budget-conscious mindset is creating longer consideration times.

According to a 2023 consumer behavior report from Knocommerce, only 23.4% of shoppers reported discovering a brand and making a purchase on the same day. 

Meanwhile, 15.3% reported buying in the first week, and 61.3% of people reported taking longer than a week to make their first purchase.

What this data tells us

It's imperative to adopt a full-funnel approach and strategically engage customers at every stage of their buying journey. 

How? First, you must understand what they need to learn about your products, when they need to learn it, and which customer service channels and content formats they prefer for learning about your products.

Part of the issue is knowing how to simply be available for your customers. They shouldn’t feel like they’re on a scavenger hunt on your website, trying to track down your product FAQs and contact information.

Helpdesks are a great way to solve both issues. For example, with Gorgias On-site Campaigns, you can integrate live chat across your website to recommend products to shoppers in a subtle way, typically at various stages of their buying cycle like,

  1. Personalized messages on product pages that resonate with individual shopper preferences and browsing history.
  2. Recommending complementary products or upgrades based on the customer's current cart selection.
  3. Capitalizing on the excitement of new product launches to capture the attention of browsers.
  4. Implementing winback campaigns targeted at customers who have previously engaged with your brand but haven't made a purchase recently.
  5. Using browse and cart abandonment strategies to re-engage customers who have shown interest in your products but haven't completed the purchase process.
  6. Providing valuable educational content that addresses common pain points, showcases product benefits, and guides customers towards informed purchasing decisions.
  7. Sending targeted holiday campaigns around seasonal trends and shopper preferences to drive conversions.
Glamnetic uses Gorgias Convert to promote their new nail collections

               Glamnetic uses Gorgias Convert to promote new collections.
             
         
Manduka uses Gorgias Convert to help browsing customers

               Manduka uses Gorgias Convert to help browsing customers make a purchase.
             
         

2. Search still matters

Over half of consumers (55% to be exact) rank search as their top source for pre-purchase information. 

Despite what some marketing gurus share online, SEO is still an essential part of any brand’s growth strategy. Don’t sleep on SEO as an acquisition channel.

What to do about this 

Don’t forget the basics of SEO. 

We know it’s easy to forget when to set up an internal link or use a specific keyword, but there are a few best practices you should use to make sure your SEO engine is chugging alone:

  • Conduct keyword research to identify high-value keywords related to your products or services and integrate them strategically into your website content, meta tags, and headings. 
  • Focus on creating high-quality, relevant content that addresses user queries and provides valuable information to enhance your search visibility and rankings. I.e. don’t try to “game” the system.
  • Use Customer Knowledge Bases to improve your website's visibility in search engine results and attract organic traffic. Incorporate targeted keywords and search-friendly formatting into your knowledge-base articles to maximize their SEO impact.
  • Keep your website content fresh, relevant, and up-to-date to maintain search visibility and engage users effectively. 
  • Track and analyze key SEO metrics, such as keyword rankings, organic traffic, and conversion rates, to measure the effectiveness of your SEO efforts. If possible, do this at least every few months (we know you’re busy!).

Remember, SEO takes time to build. Two things you should know:

  1. Traffic reflects past efforts (often taking at least 6 months to show results).
  2. Your success 6 months from now depends on your work from 6 months ago.

Essentially, what you do today will shape your results next year, which is why it’s worth investing ASAP.

3. Customers expect AI safeguards. Prioritize an ethical AI strategy

According to a report by Salesforce, 74% of customers express concerns about the unethical use of AI. Additionally, 80% emphasize the importance of human validation of AI output.

Can shoppers be any more clear about the fact that we need a human-centered approach to AI implementation?

AI is impacting how customers trust businesses. Plain and simple, you need to implement an ethical strategy and make sure it’s managed by humans.

What this data tells us

There’s a fine balance between speed to resolution and adding a human element to every customer message. And you can have both automation and humans running the show.

Businesses that take this approach meet customer expectations for AI safeguards while driving operational efficiency and delivering exceptional customer experiences.

The proof is in the pudding: According to Gorgias data, within just 28 days, merchants who automated up to 20% of tickets experienced an impressive 8-point increase in repeat purchase rates. 

Automation goes beyond keyboard shortcuts or macros; it serves as a hands-off assistant capable of engaging customers and impacting revenue significantly—while making it easy for a human to jump in at any point for more specific customer inquiries.

TL;DR: Don’t be afraid to embrace automation as a strategic tool for customer engagement and growth. 

4. Returns are becoming a profit driver, not a cost center

Returns are an inevitable part of ecommerce, with up to 30% of sales potentially resulting in returns. 

Contrary to common belief, returns are not a cost center—they can be transformed into a profit driver and a valuable touchpoint for enhancing customer loyalty and retention.

In fact, 91% of consumers actively track their packages, indicating a high level of interest and engagement in the returns process.

By making it easy for customers to track returns and exchanges directly from the order tracking page, you reduce return-related support tickets while providing a transparent experience for buyers.

TL;DR: A well-handled return can start a new chapter in the customer's relationship with a brand, not the final page.

What to do about this

At the end of the day, returns can be costly… Unless you customize the returns experience based on shopper segments and save time to re-allocate to other growth-related initiatives. 

Some tips:

  1. Customize the returns experience: Only offer free returns exclusively to VIP customers to incentivize loyalty and increase customer satisfaction.
  2. Understand return reasons: Collect data on return reasons to gain insights into areas for improvement. For example, customers will tell you how to improve product quality, refine the buying experience, and tailor messaging to better meet expectations.
  3. Empower customers: Provide customers with the autonomy to initiate returns independently. By enabling self-service returns, businesses can streamline operations, reduce resource-intensive support tickets, and enhance overall efficiency.
  4. Use integration solutions: Leverage integrated platforms such as Gorgias and Loop Returns to streamline returns management and customer support processes. With two-way integration, merchants can access comprehensive returns data directly within their Gorgias admin interface, enabling faster ticket resolution and improved customer service.

               JAXXON has a self-service portal for returns and exchanges.
             
         

Read more: Ecommerce returns: 10 best practices for taking your online store to the next level

5. Customers expect connected journeys: Break down your business silos

A staggering 79% of customers expect consistent interactions across different departments. Unfortunately, only 45% of customers feel that companies currently provide such consistency. 

Additionally, 56% of customers report the frustration of having to repeat or re-explain information to different representatives, highlighting the disconnect between departments within organizations.

PwC states that 44% of consumers are willing to engage with chatbots to seek product information before making a purchase, making it even more important to have consistency across departments.

Today, customer support teams play a dual role as both problem solvers for post-purchase inquiries and guides for customers exploring products before buying.

What this data tells us

Your support team must understand how to provide consistent support, pre-sale and post-sale. No matter where a buyer is in their journey, every message should feel consistent with the rest of the brand’s ethos.

Our recommendation? 

First, develop templates and macros for customer communication to ensure consistency in tone of voice. By providing standardized responses, businesses can maintain a cohesive brand identity and deliver a seamless experience to customers.

Second, keep all customer information in one centralized location to avoid the need for repetitive inquiries and ensure a holistic view of each customer's interaction history with the brand. No one should have to repeat themselves when trying to get support.

Last, promote a customer-first mindset across the entire organization by prioritizing the needs and preferences of customers in all decision-making processes. For a real-life example of what this looks like, Amanda Kwasniewicz, VP of Customer Experience, shares the strategies she uses at Love Wellness in this article here.

(Teaser: the team shares customer feedback directly in Slack for the whole company to see.)

Love Wellness shares customer feedback on Slack to promote a customer-first mindset across the organization.

         

6. Email is harder, time to diversify

You’re likely already aware that Gmail, Yahoo, and others are imposing stricter rules for inbox placement, making it harder for marketing emails to reach their intended recipients.

Not only that, but according to Klaviyo's benchmark report, email-placed order rates have remained stagnant, with only a minimal increase from Q1-Q3, reaching just 0.8%, and a slight rise to 0.9% in Q4. 

PWC also shares that TV and social ads remain highly influential in customers’ purchase decisions, whereas email is closer to the bottom. This doesn’t mean you should stop investing in email marketing, but connecting with customers in other ways is a good idea to supplement your email efforts.

What to do about this

You can explore many other channels—SMS, direct mail, mobile apps. Even voice marketing is a super unique and niche way to connect with audiences today.

Here at Gorgias, we’re experts at customer experience marketing, and using conversational customer service is a great way to engage with customers directly and personally—without hoping the message hits their inbox and not the spam folder.

This communication style engages customers using various channels, including live chat, messaging apps, chatbots, and even voice support. 

For example, skincare brand Topicals increased sales by 78% using conversational customer support. Specifically, the brand uses Quick Response Flows to automate answers to common questions, such as: 

  • How should I use the Faded Serum?
  • Where do you ship?
  • How do I apply to the Ambassador Program?
  • How do I find the right products for my skin type?

All of this takes place within a self-service chat. These chat flows also guide shoppers to additional helpful resources in Topicals' Help Center or product pages. If a customer still has unanswered questions, a customer support agent can take over the conversation and chat with them directly.

Topicals uses Gorgias Automate to provide instant support to customers

               Topicals uses Gorgias Automate to provide instant support.
             
         

Change can be good — embrace it

If there’s one thing we’ll leave you with, it’s this: 

Embrace the shifts, leverage the trends, and explore new avenues of engagement. 

You don’t have to be scared of new customer expectations, and thankfully, there are a ton of awesome tools out there now that make it easier than ever before to connect with your buyers.

With Gorgias, you can set up conversational marketing across your website, connecting with customers in ways that resonate and drive results. You can try it out for yourself here.

10 min read.

Why Automation is the Future of CX

Automation is a surefire way to help your team succeed. Read why the future of CX is driven by AI and automation.
By Halee Sommer
0 min read . By Halee Sommer

TL;DR:

  • Automation increases repeat purchase rates, boosts response times, improves resolution times, and allows brands to scale faster while saving time and money.
  • 94% of ecommerce experts agree that automation is going to be more important in ecommerce.
  • Brands saw an 8-point increase in repeat purchase rates in 28 days by handling repetitive inquiries with automation.
  • Gorgias users report 52% faster resolutions, reducing response and resolution times, making customers happier.

For most CX teams, budgets are getting tighter, but tickets are on the rise. 

With strapped teams and incoming customer issues, automation is becoming an ideal tool. 

94% of Gorgias customers agree, according to our recent survey. 

Supporting automation in your workflow now is a surefire way to set your team up for success. Let’s explore why we’ll see an AI and automation-driven future within CX. 

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Automation increases repeat purchase rates 

Happy customers are the best fuel for growth. Why? 

Happy customers want to come back to shop with you, and we know that repeat customers give long-term value to your brand. 

Findings from 12,000+ Gorgias merchants show that repeat customers: 

  • Account for only 21% of customers but generate 44% of revenue
  • Make up 46% of orders
  • Generate 300% more revenue than first-time customers

Our research also found that it is five times less expensive for a brand to retain an existing customer than it is to source a new one. 

If you want to see improvement in your repeat purchase rates, automation is the way to go. Automation can handle repetitive inquiries from customers, like “Where’s my order?” so your team can focus on high-touch problems. 

Brands that use Gorgias to fuel automation see improved repeat purchase rates. Within 28 days, merchants who automated up to 20% of tickets increased their repeat purchase rate by 8 points.

Automation boosts response times

Gorgias's research found that 90% of U.S. customers expect an immediate customer service response. Of those customers, 60% want that response in 10 minutes or less. 

A significant advantage of automation is that it effectively gives you a zero-second response time. When you trust automation to handle even a tiny percentage of your incoming tickets, you will see a decrease in your first-response time (FRT)

After Shinesty implemented Gorgias's Automate, the company saw a 65% boost in its first response time. This change in FRT made a monumental impact on the support team's workload.

Thanks to Automate, Shinesty is able to deflect 55% of incoming tickets with automation, giving CX agents more time to deliver personalized and proactive support to customers. 

On this improvement, Molly Kerrigan, Senior Director of Retention at Shinesty, says: 

“Automate has allowed us to focus on improving customer experience from the ground up, because we're not so deep in ‘ticket town.’”

Thanks to automation features from Gorgias, Shinesty gained the best of both worlds, providing excellent customer service while saving the budget. 

Automation improves resolution times

An added benefit of lightning-fast response times is getting to a resolution faster. This is more than just a nice-to-have — it makes your customers happier. 

As we said earlier, happy customers are more likely to shop again and cite an overall more positive experience with your brand. This is a full-circle moment that shows how a slight change in workflow can lead to significantly positive results. 

In 2022, Gorgias studied over 10,000 ecommerce brands to understand the connection between customer experience and growth. We found that lowering the average resolution time to under 6 hours gave companies a 2% boost in revenue. 

With Gorgias, customers see resolution times improve dramatically, with automatically handled tickets resolving issues 52% faster than those handled without.

That happened at Psycho Bunny, where the customer support team saw resolution times improve by a staggering  99.4% after implementing Gorgias’s AI Agent to automate 26% of customer tickets.  

With AI Agent to support the team, Psycho Bunny’s human customer support agents were free to spend more time on higher-value tasks beyond answering FAQs.

“Our customer support KPIs are already fantastic: we're already leading in the industry,” says Tosha Moyer, Senior Customer Experience Manager at Psycho Bunny. “To improve on that, we need AI — it’s not physically or financially possible with human agents alone.”

Automation allows brands to scale faster

Growth is always the goal, and incorporating automation into your existing CX workflow is a tool for achieving that growth. 

Brands that use Gorgias's automation tools can successfully scale their customer service operations quickly.  

For example, just 30 days after deploying Gorgias's automation features, brands see an average 1% increase in CSAT. 

It's a small move in the meter that has a long-lasting impact on team morale, improved customer interactions, and a more positive experience for shoppers. 

Obvi relies on Gorgias’s automation features to efficiently handle 150+ tickets each day with a slim team. 

Gorgias Automate manages about 27% of Obvi’s incoming tickets — which consist of low-priority, simple, or repetitive customer inquiries. This frees up the support team to answer complex tickets and drive sales, leading to an astonishing 10x boost in revenue over BFCM. 

Even better, Obvi was able to achieve all of this after onboarding Gorgias in just two weeks. 

“AI is going to help us transform ourselves into deeper thinkers by taking over simple, standardized functions,” says Ron Shah, CEO and Co-founder at Obvi. “In the ecommerce world, Gorgias is getting ahead with doing that for customer support — they’re the center of the AI revolution, and that is the standard customers are expecting.”

Automation saves time & money

Your team can focus on more meaningful work by automating responses to repetitive questions or low-priority tickets. 

Quickly solving a customer's problem also means they can get back to checkout faster. 

But remember, automation is a tool, not a replacement for human agents. Automation helps teams of all sizes drive value, gaining extra support without spending more overhead. 

‎July turns to Automate to tackle 30% of incoming tickets, taking on the workload of three extra agents

In this case, the company has the demand to support a bigger team but not the budget. Automation helps July fill this gap to provide a seamless customer experience without overextending their human teammates. 

“We immediately deflected 450 tickets a month just by setting up some automated Quick Responses,” says Alex Naoumidis, Head of Operations and CX at July. 

“Now, we don’t waste the customer or the agent’s time with basic questions that probably don’t require any human interaction.”

Gorgias Automate: Your solution to an automated future

Gorgias is leading the revolution in AI-driven customer support solutions

Features like our AI-generated Help Center, AI Agent, Flows, and Quick Responses allow brands to autonomously answer customer questions and track and measure AI-customer interactions to create more meaningful customer experiences and transform how support is delivered. 

Start a free trial to see Gorgias’s AI and automation features in action.

6 min read.

How to Prime Your Website to Automate CX

The dos and don’ts of making your website user-friendly so you can offer automated support as soon as possible.
By Christelle Agustin
0 min read . By Christelle Agustin

TL;DR:

  • Automating customer experience (CX) can save costs, reduce agent burnout, and increase customer satisfaction
  • A good website user experience consists of fast load times, informative product pages, mobile optimization, and guest checkout
  • Automate CX by using automated chat, replacing email links with contact forms, updating your help center, and deploying onsite campaigns
  • Do not overcomplicate the user journey by only providing automatic support — route back to human agents

Nowhere is the customer experience more important than on your website. CX is so much more than post-purchase troubleshooting. CX that grows your brand makes the entire buying journey as effortless as possible, from the first ad to the 10th item purchased.

Your website isn’t only the marketing team’s domain. Your support team’s input is crucial to ensure customers can find all the answers they need without waiting around.

With a better website experience for your customers, you enable more sales and reduce the repetitive inquiries for your agents.

Here are some tips to enrich your website with CX automations that will delight your customers and your team.

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Why automating CX is essential

With 63% of consumers expecting service agents to know their unique needs and preferences, your efforts should be focused on improving support speed and responsiveness — and that starts with automation. 

Here are the five benefits of automating your customer experience:

  1. Cost efficient: Automating routine questions cuts down the cost of human labor, redirecting resources to more impactful areas of customer service.
  2. Reduced workload for agents: Your support team can focus on more complex issues instead of spending time on questions that can be answered with automated replies.
  3. Increased customer satisfaction: Automation provides fast answers, keeping the shopping experience uninterrupted.
  4. Enhanced navigation and user experience (UX): A website optimized for automation is easier to navigate and shop from, and reduces cart abandonment rates.
  5. Prevents support overload: Automation helps your agents from lessening their touchpoints with customers where it’s not needed, allowing customers to feel in control of their own journeys.

How website UX and CX work together

If done correctly, your website's UX should be so intuitive and smooth that shoppers barely notice it. For ecommerce stores, a well-thought-out website UX consists of everything from a logical menu to a straightforward checkout flow. 

Below, pay attention to the following website elements as they directly influence the buying journey and can impact customer satisfaction.

Informative product pages

Engaging and detailed product descriptions add substantial value by influencing buying decisions and simplifying the shopping experience.

Take a look at how Good Protein keeps descriptions engaging but short in three bullet points, includes social proof by displaying customer ratings, and provides flavor, size, and subscription options in one section:

Good Protein
Good Protein provides all important product information upfront.

Mobile optimization

According to Airship’s 11,000-respondent survey, 76% of shoppers shop through retailers’ mobile websites. With a significant portion of online sales coming from smartphones, it’s best to test your website on mobile devices. If users can’t complete a purchase through mobile, you lose out on a large fraction of sales.

Minimized distractions

Reducing distractions like unnecessary pop-ups and banners keeps the shopper focused on the main goal of conversion. Streamlining content to spotlight key campaigns or product launches can dramatically improve conversion rates.

Quick page load times

Fast-loading pages are crucial for keeping potential customers engaged. Delays can significantly deter shoppers, as studies show that even a one-second delay in page loading can reduce conversions by 7%.

Check out Google’s PageSpeed Insights to assess your website's performance.

Streamlined checkout process

Simplifying the checkout process and providing multiple payment options, such as guest checkout, removes common barriers to conversion by offering a convenient purchasing process.

Swimwear brand TRIANGL makes shopping easy and fast by adding a Quick Buy button to every product:

TRIANGL makes it easy for shoppers to buy products without making an account.

‎Exceptional customer support

Tools like live chat or help centers provide a portal through fast support. AI-powered support tools like Gorgias Automate combine automated responses with the option for human interaction, ensuring customer inquiries are addressed promptly.

This integration of website UX with automated customer experience strategies creates a more efficient, enjoyable, and productive shopping environment that exceeds customer expectations.

Related: Stop Marketing, Start Converting playbook

Implement these 5 strategies to prep your website for automation

Keeping your customer support options visible is the key to prepping your website for automation. 

Follow these five methods to provide easily accessible support routes, simplify communication, and help customers quickly find the information they need. 

1. Keep chat active 24/7

When you hear “chat,” you may think about not having enough bandwidth to offer live chat all the time. Well, that’s just a common chat myth

In fact, chat doesn’t require agents to operate 24/7. You can configure live chat to only be active during your busiest hours or even deactivate it altogether and replace it with automated FAQs to keep customer questions answered throughout the day. 

Here’s how ALOHAS keeps their chat running using Gorgias Automate’s Quick Responses:

ALOHAS uses Quick Responses to answer questions about shipping policy

‎Beyond automating common questions, chat can also accomplish other support-related tasks:

  • Email Capture: When live agents aren’t available, automation can ask for customer emails so that their inquiries can be routed to your support inbox.
  • Article Recommendations: Chat questions can be scanned and matched with the most relevant article, reducing the need to talk to an agent.
  • Order Management: Automate WISMO requests with an order management portal right in chat. Customers can track, return, cancel, or report an issue on their own without waiting for an agent to do it for them.

Don’t forget that chat is one of the most visible components on your website. Make sure the chat dialog can be minimized and hidden to avoid disrupting the shopping journey.

2. Replace email with structured contact forms

Leaving your customer support email on your contact page is the equivalent of leaving plain URLs on your website — it’s disorganized and can attract spam like no other channel.

Contact forms are far superior to email links because they collect all necessary information (like issue type and contact information). This helps agents provide resolutions as efficiently as possible because tickets are already structured and include the necessary details.

For example, Gorgias Chat includes Offline Capture to collect customer inquiries while agents are offline. Gorgias Helpdesk then uses the structured information to detect customer intent, making interactions easier to manage.

CALPAK uses email capture on Gorgias
CALPAK enables email capture so that chat inquiries can be handled even when live chat is offline.

3. Display your Help Center and contact form prominently

Make your Help Center visible no matter which page shoppers are on. Displaying important customer support resources like this in your website's header, footer, and various emails like marketing messages and order confirmations allows customers to self-serve, without having to contact a live agent.

With Gorgias, you can use one-page Help Centers to create a seamless experience from one page to another on your online store. This setup allows customers to quickly find the answers they need, improving accessibility while reducing the demand on your team.

Here’s what clothing brand Princess Polly’s one-page Help Center looks like:

Princess Polly keeps the user experience seamless by keeping the Help Center a part of their website, so customers can go back to shopping whenever.

4. Make sure your knowledge base is up-to-date and comprehensive

Updating your knowledge base, whether it's a Gorgias Help Center or another FAQ page, directly impacts the customer journey. Gorgias's AI Agent uses the Help Center as its primary source to autonomously handle over 30% of customer email inquiries, drawing on articles that cover necessary topics like shipping, orders, product information, and account management. 

To optimize your Help Center for AI, ensure your content is comprehensive and current, particularly in areas such as policies and product updates. All articles should be published, not saved as drafts, to be accessible to AI Agent. Regularly reviewing your articles encourages customer self-service and reduces reliance on agent assistance.

5. Maintain engagement with targeted campaigns

Targeted onsite campaigns on product pages educate customers and boost confidence, especially when tailored to your top-selling products. For instance, when items are out of stock, campaigns can redirect customers to similar products, as demonstrated by Glamnetic during their product launches.

Additionally, Gorgias Convert chat campaigns like those used by Manduka, which highlight product guarantees, provide valuable pre-sales information that mimics the support of a physical store.

Related: Convert Campaigns playbook

The 3 don’t s of website optimization

There are pitfalls to avoid when optimizing your website for better user experiences. Keep the user journey simple and always provide options for human assistance like live email or voice. Below are three key mistakes to steer clear of.

1. Don't complicate the user journey

The user journey includes all interactions from browsing to the post-purchase experience, and automation should make this process seamless, not hinder it. Avoid adding unnecessary steps or making critical information hard to find, as this can disrupt the shopping experience and force customers to seek help when it isn't needed.

For instance, include a guest checkout option on the checkout page to simplify purchases, and ensure that links to your Help Center or Contact page are easily accessible in the top navigation. 

Watch out for these common elements that can confuse the user journey:

  • Complex navigation: A convoluted menu system can make it difficult for customers to find what they need.
  • Hidden support information: Essential details like shipping costs and return policies should be visible and easy to find.
  • Excessive pop-ups: Overloading pages with pop-ups can frustrate users.

2. Don't only provide automated support

Automation is valuable but don’t rely on it — it's still important to provide avenues for human assistance when needed. This includes support options like live chat, email, phone, and social media

The key is balance: make it easy for them to reach out to human support once they realize self-service options are insufficient. This might involve including contact options in a Help Center or contact page rather than displaying raw email addresses everywhere.

3. Don't forget to test regularly

Maintaining an optimized website requires data-driven testing and optimization. You can improve your website by following customer feedback and suggestions. Once changes have been applied, monitoring performance metrics and user behavior can ensure the user journey remains solid.

Metrics to track: 

  • Cart abandonment rate: A high abandonment rate may mean that your checkout process is too complex, causing shoppers to exit early.
  • Page load time: Slow-loading webpages negatively impact the customer experience. 
  • Bounce rate: Difficult navigation, slow loading times, or an unattractive layout are all factors that contribute to a high bounce rate. 
  • Conversion rate: Conversion rate indicates which areas of your website are performing well and which are not. Pay attention to conversion rate to prioritize areas for improvement, such as optimizing landing pages or adjusting the user journey.

Automate 30% of CX for exceptional customer experiences

July, a leading luggage brand, uses the power of Gorgias Automate to deliver unbeatable user experiences. With Automate, routine tasks typically handled by level 1 agents are accomplished automatically. Agents are then able to free up valuable resources to focus on more complex inquiries.

Ready to elevate your CX game? Book a demo today and unlock the full potential of automation for your business.

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10 min read.
Create powerful self-service resources
Capture support-generated revenue
Automate repetitive tasks
Create powerful self-service resources
Capture support-generated revenue
Automate repetitive tasks

Further reading

series c-2 funding

Announcing Our Series C-2 Funding & the AI-powered Future of CX

By Romain Lapeyre
5 min read.
0 min read . By Romain Lapeyre

Today, we’re sharing that we raised $29 million in Series C-2 funding from our existing investors, including Shopify. 

Throughout the lifetime of Gorgias, we’ve always believed that great CX can be the main channel for growth for brands. Now, we believe that AI empowers any brand to realize that potential. 

Most CX leaders agree, with 94% out of 1,000+ agreeing automation is becoming more essential to CX.

Funding will specifically be used to support AI Agent – a fully autonomous AI teammate built on brands’ own knowledge bases, data, and integrations, powered by OpenAI's newest model, GPT-4o.

the interface of ai agent as a gif and some benefits of the tool like automating 60% of support

AI and the next evolution of customer experience

AI has changed the landscape of digital technology. The best comparison is in the early 2000s, when the internet boomed and innovation followed. 

Brands like Netflix embraced the change, evolving alongside their customers' expectations, while brands like Blockbuster tried to stick with the old ways. Now, one of those brands is a Fortune 500 company and the other is a nostalgic throwback.

Now, in the 2020s, artificial intelligence is lowering overhead, automating cognition, accelerating processes, and so much more. Brands – from software companies like Gorgias to ecommerce brands like the ones we serve – must lean into these new technologies to continue growing. 

That’s why we’ve made the conscious decision to go all in on AI and automated CX. We truly believe that AI-powered solutions are the best way to help ecommerce brands on Gorgias grow and succeed.

The case for AI-powered CX 

Our recent research shows that brands who automate their CX see:

  • 52% reduction in resolution time
  • 26% lower ticket-to-order ratio
  • 36% more repeat purchases

AI is your instant Level 1 support. Use it to handle repetitive, basic questions quickly, to meet customer expectations, at a lower cost than hiring human staff. 

Reliable AI frees CX teams to do more than what they previously thought possible, such as opening up new channels like Voice or Live Chat and freeing up your team to focus on high-impact conversations, strategy, and other important projects that get neglected when you’re drowning in tickets.

“The combination of AI and human agents is the future of support,” said Tosha Moyer, Senior Customer Experience Manager at Psycho Bunny. 

Leveraging millions of ecommerce data points

Gorgias has processed 500 million tickets — every single one of them from ecommerce brands — which give us the data points and knowledge we need to build the best AI tool for ecommerce.

We also integrate deeply with 100 ecommerce apps like Shopify, Recharge, Loop Returns, and Klaviyo. This means that AI built with Gorgias has access to more data from your ecommerce tech stack, and can push updates to those apps as well.

“The combination of AI and human agents is the future of support”

— Tosha Moyer, Senior Customer Experience Manager at Psycho Bunny

We cannot stress enough the value of these data points and integrations to power CX. Without these, AI can only offer ChatGPT-style answers. It cannot pull up customer information to personalize a response or find information like order status and loyalty points. Likewise, it cannot process a partial refund or update a subscription. 

With more data and integrations than any other CX tool built for ecommerce, we’re confident our AI will provide accurate, personalized, and helpful answers to our brands’ customers. 

AI that integrates seamlessly with your team

We’re committed to developing AI solutions that put you in full control. You’ll be able to:

  • Feed the AI from your private knowledge base
  • Teach the AI your brand voice and policies
  • Set guidelines that tell the AI exactly when and how to respond to specific scenarios
  • Review every single AI interaction
  • Provide feedback to improve the AI over time

And much more!

This means the way you work will shift: before, CX work was answering repetitive tickets over and over (and over). Now, you’ll use some of that time to monitor and improve your AI Agent and use the rest to tackle CX projects that have been on the back burner for months (if not years).

The next chapter: AI Agent 


Powered by the latest ChatGPT model, GPT-4o, AI Agent can instantly answer tickets, perform actions in other apps, and match a brand's tone of voice, all while ensuring that human hand-off is always possible and smooth for the customer. It can drastically reduce your support time while earning higher CSAT scores than 95% of human agents. 

Gorgias AI Agent

Launching in July, AI Agent is already being used by leading brands like Psycho Bunny. They’ve combined Automate and AI Agent to automate over 40% of inquiries across all channels, responding to and resolving them in minutes, not hours, all while achieving a higher CSAT than their human team.
Join the waitlist

“The AI Agent actually personalizes responses better than our human team, who sometimes just apply a Macro and hit send. The AI Agent restates parts of the customer’s questions helping them feel understood. Plus, of course, it’s super fast.”

— Anneliese Field, Customer Experience Manager at Love In Faith

AI Agent is just the next step in our evolution as a company. 

Looking into the future, we’re using this new round of funding to develop AI-powered solutions to help you provide instant responses, gather insights to improve your CX, turn support agents into top sellers, and help you drive LTV through amazing customer experiences.

How to Optimize Your Help Center for AI Agent

By Christelle Agustin
16 min read.
0 min read . By Christelle Agustin

TL;DR:

  • AI Agent, Gorgias’s conversational AI tool, uses your Help Center as its primary knowledge source to autonomously handle over 30% of customer email inquiries.
  • Ensure your Help Center articles address all relevant topics such as shipping, orders, product information, and account management.
  • An updated Help Center boosts AI Agent's ability to deliver accurate and relevant responses.
  • Ready your Help Center for the upcoming AI Agent beta in May 2024 by using our 50+ article templates.

Your Help Center is a great resource for sharing information with customers. And as AI technology transforms customer support, the Help Center now also serves as a data source that provides AI with the knowledge to answer questions.

Gorgias’s AI features function by drawing on information from knowledge sources. For example, Gorgias’s AI can draw upon your past support tickets to generate Help Center content. Likewise, our upcoming AI Agent uses your Help Center to write and send answers to customer questions.

Our AI Agent is coming July 1st (with a Beta starting in May). Below, we'll explain why an up-to-date Help Center that covers all your policies is the best way to prepare for AI Agent, gain admission to the Beta, and resolve 30%+ of your email support interactions.

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Help Center: The foundation of AI Agent’s knowledge

AI Agent is a conversational AI tool that answers customer support emails by learning your brand’s policies and processes from your Help Center. It can understand a wide array of questions and generate unique responses that are helpful, personalized, and accurate.

Unlike AI tools like ChatGPT or Gemini, which are trained on public information, AI Agent specifically works with your data. Its first layer of support is your Help Center, a database of articles about your products and policies. From there, you can complement its knowledge with data from Macros and connected ecommerce tools like Shopify. 


With AI Agent as your level 1 support, your team can focus on escalated or VIP tickets and other projects you may not currently have time for. 

The crucial step to fully prepare AI Agent is to make sure your Help Center articles are accurate and up-to-date. You don’t need to have your Help Center published or linked on your website — however, articles must be published and not saved as drafts. 

How to tell if your Help Center is ready for AI Agent

To hit the ground running with AI Agent, your Help Center must meet a few criteria. Here’s a checklist to prepare your Help Center:

✔️ Answers all relevant topics

Ideally, customers should find answers with just one click. You can achieve this by publishing articles that answer your customers’ top concerns. 

We’ve compiled the most important Help Center articles to have, with the starred questions being essential to include. You can skip to the bottom of this post to find templates for these topics: 

Shipping & Tracking

  • ⭐️ Where is my order? (WISMO)
  • ⭐️ How do I track my order?
  • ⭐️ How do I get my tracking number? 
  • ⭐️ How much does shipping cost?
  • ⭐️ Do you offer free shipping?
  • ⭐️ International shipping / do you ship worldwide?
  • ⭐️ Do you offer expedited shipping?
  • ⭐️ How long does delivery take?
  • Why can’t I track my order?

Orders & Payment

  • ⭐️ Can I edit or add anything to my order?
  • ⭐️ How do I apply promo/discount codes?
  • What methods of payment do you accept?
  • Where do I get promo codes/discounts?
  • My promo code isn’t working
  • Forgot to add a promo code (but already purchased)
  • How do Shop Pay installments work?
  • How do I update the billing information on my order?
  • How do I purchase a gift card?
  • How do I use a gift card for my purchase?
  • Do you price match for sales?

Order Issues

  • ⭐️ What is your return/exchange policy?
  • ⭐️ What is your cancellation policy?
  • ⭐️ How do I initiate a return?
  • ⭐️ How do I initiate an exchange?
  • ⭐️ How do I cancel my order?
  • ⭐️ How do I get a refund?
  • ⭐️ Order is marked delivered but not here
  • ⭐️ What do I do if I receive the wrong item in my order?
  • Right product was delivered but wrong size/style/color/etc.
  • Item is missing from my order
  • Does not fit/not true to size
  • I’m having a reaction to the product
  • Order damaged

Product Information

  • Sizing
  • Styles
  • Materials/Ingredients
  • Product recommendations
  • How to use this product
  • How long does this last?
  • How to store this product (if it’s perishable)?
  • Product care / washing / cleaning
  • Differences between similar products

Accounts/Subscriptions

  • ⭐️ How do I use these benefits/rewards points?
  • ⭐️ I’m having trouble logging in
  • ⭐️ How do I cancel my membership/subscription?
  • ⭐️ How do I skip a subscription shipment?
  • ⭐️ How do I update my subscription items?
  • How do I set up an account?
  • How do I become a member/subscriber/loyalty program?
  • What are the member benefits? Why should I sign up?
  • I forgot my password / Reset my password 
  • How do I change my default address?

✔️ Up-to-date and accurate articles

As an online business, your information constantly changes, including policies, product updates, and brand revamps. Review older articles, particularly those over a year old, to ensure the information is still accurate. 

Here are the most important elements to update: 

  • Policies, e.g. international shipping, order processing times, return windows, your contact details
  • Product names and availability
  • Links (to key pages on your website or self-service portals)

✔️ Includes important links

If your articles point to other web pages, you’ll want to make sure the right texts are hyperlinked, and the links do not lead to 404 pages.

Some important links to include:

💡 Pro Tip: Avoid including statements in your articles like, “To resolve this issue, contact us at [email]” as this confuses the AI Agent.

✔️ Articles are published

Ensure your articles are published so AI Agent can learn from them. Whether the article is Unlisted or Public, you must take them out of Draft mode. An article left in Draft mode remains invisible to AI Agent. To confirm that your article is published, check the top right corner of the editor to ensure the article is “Published” and not “Unsaved.”

Choose to make your Help Center articles Public or Unlisted
Modify the category, visibility settings, and language of a Help Center article in the editor.

That said, if you’re not ready to share your Help Center with customers,  you don’t need to publish the Help Center itself.

Toggle whether you want your Help Center to be live
You can choose to publish your Help Center live or keep it hidden.

Related: How to boost your Help Center’s visibility

How to build a Help Center as quickly as possible

If you don’t currently have a Help Center, you can set one up and start filling it with articles within a couple of hours. Below are three strategies that will let you create the most comprehensive Help Center, fast.

1) Use AI to create articles

When you create a Help Center on Gorgias, you can access the AI Library. The AI-generated articles are based on your past conversations with customers and their concerns. You can edit them to suit your brand voice and policies.

AI Library gif
Gorgias’s AI Library automatically generates articles based on what your customers inquire about.

As of now, only accounts with a single Shopify store connected have access to the AI Library. We expect multi-store accounts to gain access to this feature by mid-May 2024.

Related: Our AI Library Help Doc

2) Use article templates

Accelerate the setup of your Help Center by using pre-written article templates. These templates cover common customer inquiries and ensure consistency in response quality and format. 

Gorgias offers six ready-to-use Help Center article templates that cover essential topics. These templates enable you to quickly establish a strong database without wasting agents’ time.

A GIF of Help Center article templates
Gorgias makes it easy to create a Help Center with six ready-made article templates.

3) Leverage existing content

Take stock of your existing content, such as FAQs, product guides, and blog posts. Convert this content into Help Center articles and properly categorize them based on the topic for seamless user navigation.

💡 Pro Tip: Each article should only ask one question. This helps AI Agent to easily decipher the purpose of each article.

Evolve Skateboards
Evolve Skateboards links their YouTube videos in their Help Center.

50+ Help Center Article Templates with Answers

To speed up Help Center creation, we’ve provided article templates covering topics from shipping and tracking and account creation to product information. Simply edit the details and add the necessary links based on your policies.

Shipping & Tracking

⭐️ Where is my order? (WISMO)

To check the status of your order, please visit our Order Tracking Portal and enter your email address and order number. We update our tracking information as soon as it is available.

⭐️ How do I track my order?

Once your order has shipped, we'll send you a confirmation email with a tracking link. Click on the link to view the latest updates on your order and its estimated delivery date.

⭐️ How do I get my tracking number?

Your tracking number will be emailed to you when your order ships. If you haven't received it, please check your spam folder. If it's not there, please contact our customer support team.

⭐️ How much does shipping cost?

Shipping costs vary depending on the weight of your order and the destination. To view shipping costs, simply add items to your cart, proceed to checkout, and enter your shipping address. The applicable shipping fees will be displayed before you finalize your order.

⭐️ Do you offer free shipping?

Yes, we offer free standard shipping on orders over [$#]. A standard shipping fee will be applied to orders under [$#].

⭐️ Do you ship worldwide?

We ship to [#] countries worldwide. Shipping costs and times vary depending on the destination. For detailed information and to see if we ship to your country, please visit our international shipping page.

⭐️ Do you offer expedited shipping?

Yes, we offer expedited shipping options for most locations. You can select your preferred shipping method at checkout. Additional charges will apply for expedited shipping.

⭐️ How long does delivery take?

Delivery times vary depending on the destination and the shipping method selected. For standard shipping in [country], expect your order to arrive within 5-7 business days. International orders may take 10-20 business days. 

Why can’t I track my order?

If you can’t track your order, it may be for several reasons: the tracking information is not yet available, the tracking number is incorrect, or there may be a delay in the tracking system updates.

Please allow up to 24 hours for your tracking information to become available after receiving your shipping confirmation email. If you still face issues, contact our customer support team for further assistance.

Order & Payment

⭐️ Can I edit or add anything to my order?

Once an order is placed, we are unable to make changes to the order. However, if you need to update your shipping address or contact information, please contact our customer service team immediately after placing your order.

⭐️ How do I apply promo/discount codes?

To apply a promo or discount code, proceed to checkout and enter your code in the 'Discount Code' field. Click 'Apply' to see your new total before finalizing your order. Only one code can be used per order.

What methods of payment do you accept?

We accept various payment methods including Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and PayPal. 

Please note that we do not accept personal checks or money orders. 

Where do I get promo codes/discounts?

To get promo and discount codes, make sure to subscribe to our newsletter, check our homepage, and follow us on social media to get the latest deals. 

My promo code isn’t working.

The promo code you entered may not work due to an incorrect input (check that you have entered the right letters and numbers), specific conditions (like minimum spend), or an expiry date. If you continue to experience issues, please contact our support team for assistance.

I forgot to add a promo code but already made a purchase.

If you forgot to apply a promo code at checkout, please contact our customer service team as soon as possible. Depending on the status of your order, our team may be able to apply the promo code for you.

How do Shop Pay installments work?

Shop Pay Installments allow you to split your purchase into multiple payments, interest-free. At checkout, choose Shop Pay, select 'Installments', and follow the prompts to set up your payment plan.

How do I update the billing information on my order?

To update your billing information, you may log in to your account and change your information from the Account Settings page. If you do not have an account, please contact our customer service immediately.

How do I purchase a gift card?

Gift cards can be purchased directly from our website. Visit our gift card section, choose the amount, and complete the purchase. The gift card will be directly emailed to you or to the specified recipient.

How do I use a gift card for my purchase?

To use a gift card, enter the code in the 'Gift Card or Discount Code' box at checkout. The value of the gift card will be deducted from your order total.

Do you price match for sales?

We offer price matching for sales within [specific timeframe] of purchase. If an item you’ve bought goes on sale within this period, please contact our customer service to adjust the price difference. Note that certain conditions may apply.

Order Issues

⭐️ What is your return/exchange policy?

We accept returns and exchanges within [30] days of purchase. Items must be in their original condition and packaging. Some items may not be eligible for return. Please see our detailed return policy for more information.

⭐️ What is your cancellation policy?

Orders can be canceled within 24 hours. After this period, we may not be able to cancel your order as it might already be in processing or shipment.

⭐️ How do I initiate a return?

To initiate a return, please visit our Returns & Exchanges Portal and enter your order number and email address. 

⭐️ How do I initiate an exchange?

To exchange an item, please visit our Returns & Exchanges Portal. 

⭐️ How do I cancel my order?

If you need to cancel your order, please contact us immediately. If your order has not yet been processed, we will cancel it and issue a full refund. If the order is already processed, please refer to our Returns & Exchanges policy.

⭐️ How do I get a refund?

Refunds are processed upon receipt and inspection of the returned item. Please allow up to 10 business days for your refund to be credited back to your original form of payment.

⭐️ Order is marked delivered but not here.

If your order is marked as delivered but you haven't received it, please check around your delivery location and with neighbors. If you still can't locate it, contact our customer support for assistance.

⭐️ What do I do if I receive the wrong item in my order?

If you receive the wrong item, please contact our customer service immediately. We will arrange for the correct item to be sent to you and provide instructions for returning the incorrect item.

I received the right product but in the wrong size/style/color.

We apologize for any inconvenience caused. Please contact our customer service team within [#] days of receiving your order to initiate an exchange for the correct size/style/color. Visit our Returns & Exchanges policy for more information.

What should I do if an item is missing from my order?

We're sorry to hear that you're experiencing issues with your order. Please check your confirmation emails to ensure all items were included in your shipment. If an item is missing, please contact our customer service team immediately so we can resolve the issue.

What can I do if my item doesn't fit or isn't true to size?

If the item you purchased does not fit, you can return it for a refund or exchange it for a different size. Please refer to our Returns & Exchanges policy for details on how to initiate a return or exchange.

What should I do if I'm having a reaction to the product?

Your safety is our priority. Please stop using the product immediately and consult a healthcare professional as needed. To report a reaction and request a return or exchange, contact our customer support team. We also recommend checking the ingredients list to identify any potential allergens.

What should I do if my order arrived damaged?

We apologize for the inconvenience. Please take a photo of the damaged item and email it to our customer service department within [#] days of delivery. We will assist you with a return or exchange as quickly as possible.

Product Information

Where can I find sizing information?

Our sizing runs true to size unless stated otherwise.

For detailed sizing information, please visit our Sizing Guide page. The guide includes size charts and tips on measuring yourself to ensure the best fit.

Which style is best suited for my needs?

Our various styles cater to different preferences and requirements. For a breakdown of our styles and their best uses, please check out our detailed Style Guide.

What are the materials or ingredients used in this product?

We use high-quality materials/ingredients to ensure the best experience with our products. For a full list of the materials or ingredients in this product, visit the product page.

What product do you recommend for [trait/preference/condition]?

For [trait/preference/condition], we recommend our [Product Name], designed to provide a [benefit here]. 

How do I use this product?

For optimal results, follow these steps: 

  1. Step 1
  2. Step 2
  3. Step 3
  4. Step 4

How long does this product last and how should it be stored?

This product typically lasts [X amount of time] when used as directed. Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. For perishable products, refrigeration may be required. 

What's the best way to care for this product?

To maintain the quality of your product, we recommend [specific care instructions, e.g., machine wash cold, hand wash only]. For more detailed care instructions, please visit our Care Guide.

What's the difference between Product A and Product B?

Product A is designed for [specific use], while Product B is better suited for [different use]. 

Accounts/Subscriptions

⭐️ How do I use these rewards points?

You can redeem your rewards points at checkout. Enter the amount of points you wish to apply in the 'Rewards' field, and the discount will be applied to your total.

⭐️ I’m having trouble logging in.

If you're having trouble logging into your account, please try resetting your password using the 'Forgot Password' link on the login page. If you still experience issues, contact our customer support team for help.

⭐️ How do I cancel my membership/subscription?

To cancel your membership or subscription, please log into your account and navigate to the 'Subscriptions' section. You can choose to cancel your subscription from there. If you need assistance, our customer service team is here to help.

⭐️ How do I skip a subscription shipment?

You can skip a subscription shipment by logging into your account, going to the 'Subscriptions' section, and selecting the shipment you wish to skip. Please do this before the billing date for the next shipment.

⭐️ How do I update my subscription items?

To update the items in your subscription, log into your account and visit the 'Subscriptions' tab. You can add or remove products or change the quantities for your next shipment.

How do I set up an account?

Create an account [here] by using the same email address you ordered with.

Please note that if you haven’t created a password, you do not have an account. Additionally, signing up for our emails or ordering doesn't mean you have created an account.

How do I become a member/subscriber/loyalty program?

Become a member by visiting our Membership page.

What are the membership benefits?

You’ll earn many perks as a [company name here] member! Upon joining, you’ll receive a 10% off discount on any purchase. 

Plus, more benefits:

  • Points for every dollar spent
  • [$] off anytime you refer a friend
  • A special birthday gift
  • An anniversary gift

I forgot my password.

To reset your password, please click [here].

How do I change my default address?

You can change your default address from your Account settings.

If you need to change your shipping address for a current order, please [contact us].

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Customer Expectations Have Changed — Here’s What You Can Do

By Tina Donati
10 min read.
0 min read . By Tina Donati

TL;DR:

  • Ecommerce sales are expected to rise by 8.8% in 2024, presenting new growth opportunities.
  • Longer consideration times mean businesses need to engage customers at every stage of their buying journey.
  • SEO remains crucial for growth, with over half of consumers using search for pre-purchase information.
  • Ethical AI and well-managed returns can boost customer trust and loyalty while driving sales.

Let’s stop with the doom and gloom ecommerce trends and talk about what’s really up: growth.

Yep, you read that right. 

Ecommerce sales are set to soar by 8.8% in 2024, and the digital marketplace is ripe with opportunity.

Sure, we’ve all been budget-conscious for the past year or more—businesses and consumers alike. And we’re not saying you shouldn’t be.

Despite that, there is a ton of opportunity to grow your sales this year. It’s just time to understand how consumer behavior is shifting and how you should adapt to it.

So, what’s changing? We shared six trends to know about below.

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1. Consideration times are longer

There’s no denying that the more budget-conscious mindset is creating longer consideration times.

According to a 2023 consumer behavior report from Knocommerce, only 23.4% of shoppers reported discovering a brand and making a purchase on the same day. 

Meanwhile, 15.3% reported buying in the first week, and 61.3% of people reported taking longer than a week to make their first purchase.

What this data tells us

It's imperative to adopt a full-funnel approach and strategically engage customers at every stage of their buying journey. 

How? First, you must understand what they need to learn about your products, when they need to learn it, and which customer service channels and content formats they prefer for learning about your products.

Part of the issue is knowing how to simply be available for your customers. They shouldn’t feel like they’re on a scavenger hunt on your website, trying to track down your product FAQs and contact information.

Helpdesks are a great way to solve both issues. For example, with Gorgias On-site Campaigns, you can integrate live chat across your website to recommend products to shoppers in a subtle way, typically at various stages of their buying cycle like,

  1. Personalized messages on product pages that resonate with individual shopper preferences and browsing history.
  2. Recommending complementary products or upgrades based on the customer's current cart selection.
  3. Capitalizing on the excitement of new product launches to capture the attention of browsers.
  4. Implementing winback campaigns targeted at customers who have previously engaged with your brand but haven't made a purchase recently.
  5. Using browse and cart abandonment strategies to re-engage customers who have shown interest in your products but haven't completed the purchase process.
  6. Providing valuable educational content that addresses common pain points, showcases product benefits, and guides customers towards informed purchasing decisions.
  7. Sending targeted holiday campaigns around seasonal trends and shopper preferences to drive conversions.
Glamnetic uses Gorgias Convert to promote their new nail collections

               Glamnetic uses Gorgias Convert to promote new collections.
             
         
Manduka uses Gorgias Convert to help browsing customers

               Manduka uses Gorgias Convert to help browsing customers make a purchase.
             
         

2. Search still matters

Over half of consumers (55% to be exact) rank search as their top source for pre-purchase information. 

Despite what some marketing gurus share online, SEO is still an essential part of any brand’s growth strategy. Don’t sleep on SEO as an acquisition channel.

What to do about this 

Don’t forget the basics of SEO. 

We know it’s easy to forget when to set up an internal link or use a specific keyword, but there are a few best practices you should use to make sure your SEO engine is chugging alone:

  • Conduct keyword research to identify high-value keywords related to your products or services and integrate them strategically into your website content, meta tags, and headings. 
  • Focus on creating high-quality, relevant content that addresses user queries and provides valuable information to enhance your search visibility and rankings. I.e. don’t try to “game” the system.
  • Use Customer Knowledge Bases to improve your website's visibility in search engine results and attract organic traffic. Incorporate targeted keywords and search-friendly formatting into your knowledge-base articles to maximize their SEO impact.
  • Keep your website content fresh, relevant, and up-to-date to maintain search visibility and engage users effectively. 
  • Track and analyze key SEO metrics, such as keyword rankings, organic traffic, and conversion rates, to measure the effectiveness of your SEO efforts. If possible, do this at least every few months (we know you’re busy!).

Remember, SEO takes time to build. Two things you should know:

  1. Traffic reflects past efforts (often taking at least 6 months to show results).
  2. Your success 6 months from now depends on your work from 6 months ago.

Essentially, what you do today will shape your results next year, which is why it’s worth investing ASAP.

3. Customers expect AI safeguards. Prioritize an ethical AI strategy

According to a report by Salesforce, 74% of customers express concerns about the unethical use of AI. Additionally, 80% emphasize the importance of human validation of AI output.

Can shoppers be any more clear about the fact that we need a human-centered approach to AI implementation?

AI is impacting how customers trust businesses. Plain and simple, you need to implement an ethical strategy and make sure it’s managed by humans.

What this data tells us

There’s a fine balance between speed to resolution and adding a human element to every customer message. And you can have both automation and humans running the show.

Businesses that take this approach meet customer expectations for AI safeguards while driving operational efficiency and delivering exceptional customer experiences.

The proof is in the pudding: According to Gorgias data, within just 28 days, merchants who automated up to 20% of tickets experienced an impressive 8-point increase in repeat purchase rates. 

Automation goes beyond keyboard shortcuts or macros; it serves as a hands-off assistant capable of engaging customers and impacting revenue significantly—while making it easy for a human to jump in at any point for more specific customer inquiries.

TL;DR: Don’t be afraid to embrace automation as a strategic tool for customer engagement and growth. 

4. Returns are becoming a profit driver, not a cost center

Returns are an inevitable part of ecommerce, with up to 30% of sales potentially resulting in returns. 

Contrary to common belief, returns are not a cost center—they can be transformed into a profit driver and a valuable touchpoint for enhancing customer loyalty and retention.

In fact, 91% of consumers actively track their packages, indicating a high level of interest and engagement in the returns process.

By making it easy for customers to track returns and exchanges directly from the order tracking page, you reduce return-related support tickets while providing a transparent experience for buyers.

TL;DR: A well-handled return can start a new chapter in the customer's relationship with a brand, not the final page.

What to do about this

At the end of the day, returns can be costly… Unless you customize the returns experience based on shopper segments and save time to re-allocate to other growth-related initiatives. 

Some tips:

  1. Customize the returns experience: Only offer free returns exclusively to VIP customers to incentivize loyalty and increase customer satisfaction.
  2. Understand return reasons: Collect data on return reasons to gain insights into areas for improvement. For example, customers will tell you how to improve product quality, refine the buying experience, and tailor messaging to better meet expectations.
  3. Empower customers: Provide customers with the autonomy to initiate returns independently. By enabling self-service returns, businesses can streamline operations, reduce resource-intensive support tickets, and enhance overall efficiency.
  4. Use integration solutions: Leverage integrated platforms such as Gorgias and Loop Returns to streamline returns management and customer support processes. With two-way integration, merchants can access comprehensive returns data directly within their Gorgias admin interface, enabling faster ticket resolution and improved customer service.

               JAXXON has a self-service portal for returns and exchanges.
             
         

Read more: Ecommerce returns: 10 best practices for taking your online store to the next level

5. Customers expect connected journeys: Break down your business silos

A staggering 79% of customers expect consistent interactions across different departments. Unfortunately, only 45% of customers feel that companies currently provide such consistency. 

Additionally, 56% of customers report the frustration of having to repeat or re-explain information to different representatives, highlighting the disconnect between departments within organizations.

PwC states that 44% of consumers are willing to engage with chatbots to seek product information before making a purchase, making it even more important to have consistency across departments.

Today, customer support teams play a dual role as both problem solvers for post-purchase inquiries and guides for customers exploring products before buying.

What this data tells us

Your support team must understand how to provide consistent support, pre-sale and post-sale. No matter where a buyer is in their journey, every message should feel consistent with the rest of the brand’s ethos.

Our recommendation? 

First, develop templates and macros for customer communication to ensure consistency in tone of voice. By providing standardized responses, businesses can maintain a cohesive brand identity and deliver a seamless experience to customers.

Second, keep all customer information in one centralized location to avoid the need for repetitive inquiries and ensure a holistic view of each customer's interaction history with the brand. No one should have to repeat themselves when trying to get support.

Last, promote a customer-first mindset across the entire organization by prioritizing the needs and preferences of customers in all decision-making processes. For a real-life example of what this looks like, Amanda Kwasniewicz, VP of Customer Experience, shares the strategies she uses at Love Wellness in this article here.

(Teaser: the team shares customer feedback directly in Slack for the whole company to see.)

Love Wellness shares customer feedback on Slack to promote a customer-first mindset across the organization.

         

6. Email is harder, time to diversify

You’re likely already aware that Gmail, Yahoo, and others are imposing stricter rules for inbox placement, making it harder for marketing emails to reach their intended recipients.

Not only that, but according to Klaviyo's benchmark report, email-placed order rates have remained stagnant, with only a minimal increase from Q1-Q3, reaching just 0.8%, and a slight rise to 0.9% in Q4. 

PWC also shares that TV and social ads remain highly influential in customers’ purchase decisions, whereas email is closer to the bottom. This doesn’t mean you should stop investing in email marketing, but connecting with customers in other ways is a good idea to supplement your email efforts.

What to do about this

You can explore many other channels—SMS, direct mail, mobile apps. Even voice marketing is a super unique and niche way to connect with audiences today.

Here at Gorgias, we’re experts at customer experience marketing, and using conversational customer service is a great way to engage with customers directly and personally—without hoping the message hits their inbox and not the spam folder.

This communication style engages customers using various channels, including live chat, messaging apps, chatbots, and even voice support. 

For example, skincare brand Topicals increased sales by 78% using conversational customer support. Specifically, the brand uses Quick Response Flows to automate answers to common questions, such as: 

  • How should I use the Faded Serum?
  • Where do you ship?
  • How do I apply to the Ambassador Program?
  • How do I find the right products for my skin type?

All of this takes place within a self-service chat. These chat flows also guide shoppers to additional helpful resources in Topicals' Help Center or product pages. If a customer still has unanswered questions, a customer support agent can take over the conversation and chat with them directly.

Topicals uses Gorgias Automate to provide instant support to customers

               Topicals uses Gorgias Automate to provide instant support.
             
         

Change can be good — embrace it

If there’s one thing we’ll leave you with, it’s this: 

Embrace the shifts, leverage the trends, and explore new avenues of engagement. 

You don’t have to be scared of new customer expectations, and thankfully, there are a ton of awesome tools out there now that make it easier than ever before to connect with your buyers.

With Gorgias, you can set up conversational marketing across your website, connecting with customers in ways that resonate and drive results. You can try it out for yourself here.

Knowing What You Don’t Know with Nick O’Brien

By Christelle Agustin
5 min read.
0 min read . By Christelle Agustin

Nick’s Top Advice:

  • Sharpen your skills through classes, books, and other resources.
  • Ensure your hires are all good communicators.
  • Create rapport and maintain strong relationships with your network because this will pay off in your future endeavors.

Nick O’Brien didn’t think he would find himself back in the print packaging industry, a trade that’s been written in his family tree for four generations. Then 2015 came and Nick witnessed how difficult it was for New York City business owners to find print packaging suppliers. This reignited a fire in him, pushing Nick to start his own print packaging business called Templi in 2017.

Don’t end up non-technical

There were already “two big strikes” against Nick starting as a non-technical and solo entrepreneur. Although he had spent his younger years working for his family’s print shop Concept Print, Templi was new territory. Not only was there printing to worry about, there was also the coordination work of wrangling together a reliable group of suppliers, designers, and buyers.

ConceptPrint office in Nyack, NY
ConceptPrint’s office in Nyack, New York

He accepted this operations puzzle completely, “I worked through it by realizing, know what you don't know, and trying to get 1% better and more technical every day.”

Nick took it upon himself to fill in the gaps even without a background in business. Code Academy, an online learning platform for coding, was foundational to Nick’s learning and helped him overcome early obstacles. “You can’t run away from learning,” he says, “you have to try to get proficient in all of these areas before you make your hires.”

“You could start non-technical, but you shouldn't end up non-technical.”

Lead by example

The balance between leader and learner was hectic in the early days of Templi, and Nick could only survive as a one-man operation for so long. Building his team was ultimately a self-assessment of what duties he could and couldn’t handle as a founder. He was “basically replacing [himself] with the things he felt were the most easy to train — like customer service, bookkeeping, artwork.” 

For those beginning the hiring process in their startup, he advises to “start small with the technical hire to keep your costs low, then bring in administrative hires to relieve yourself of smaller tasks, so you can stay focused on sales and the customer relationship.”

‎Now, with 10 people on the team, maintaining a healthy workplace culture is top of mind. “Find people who are good communicators and who raise the standards of the team with each new hire.” As a CEO, that means being eager to receive criticisms from both employees and customers so you know which company standards need to be improved.

“How you deal with problems as CEO is how your culture ends up getting defined.”

Keep in touch with your network

In 2020, Templi was one of many U.S. businesses shocked by the global COVID-19 pandemic. When orders stopped coming in, Nick had to start selling personal protective equipment (PPE) to keep the business afloat, “I relied on some connections I had from living and working in China for a couple of years, and that gave us just enough money to keep the business going.”

Maintaining a network is crucial for Templi since they serve design agencies in charge of multiple brands. “Creatives, by nature, have higher standards, and if we do right by them, we make their life easier, they bring us more customers.”

“You may think that because you're in ecommerce, you're not physically connected to your customer, but I would implore you to get connected in every way you can — visit a customer, call them, understand deeply the problems you’re trying to solve. Those relationships will pay off for you and them.”‎ —Nick O'Brien on connecting with your customers

Optimize with speed-based KPIs

Nick often talks about iterating quickly, and to him, that means integrating customer feedback. He still makes sure to spend time with customers, whether he’s visiting their offices or getting their feedback through an email.

To make sure they’re on track, their KPIs address consistency and speed: “We're always trying to optimize for anything that involves those two things, like optimizing for repeat orders. We ultimately want to put these types of purchases on autopilot for the customer and create as much consistency as we can.”

Templi
Templi’s recyclable double-wall coffee cups are great for lower volume cafes, weddings, and other intimate gatherings

Templi’s minimum order quantities (also known as MOQ) are at the high end of the spectrum, with coffee cup orders starting at a minimum of 2,000 cups per order and bar coasters at 2,500. At this level of manufacturing, printing errors and product defects can occur. How does Templi salvage them? Or, more importantly, how do they keep customers happy? 

“To retain a customer, sometimes you may not want to give a certain discount, but then you realize you need to retain them as best you can. That plays into your customer experience, doing whatever you can to keep customers happy, and optimizing the customer experience at every turn.” 

Focus and be present

When the work day ends, Nick comes home to his wife and three-year-old daughter. He is mindful about time, dividing his day into half-hour blocks. For Nick, a great day equates to 10-12 hours of focused work, which he uses carefully: “You need to be able to focus, turn off, and be present for your family.” 

Templi has already beat the odds of startup longevity as a seven-year-old business. Focus is also Nick’s mantra when it comes to leveling up Templi, “Just making those incremental improvements on focus is probably the best thing I've done in building the team.” 

Nick reminds aspiring entrepreneurs not to shy away from collaboration and to continue getting better 1% every day.

“I'm doing my best. I'm not perfect, so I always try and keep getting better everyday.”

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Offer More Self-Serve Options with Flows: 10 Use Cases & Best Practices

By Christelle Agustin
9 min read.
0 min read . By Christelle Agustin

Unfortunately, many shoppers struggle to find the information they need while shopping online, even when self-service portals should be standard, according to 88% of consumers.

At Gorgias, we focus on simplifying customer experiences with AI and automation tools. Our automation tool, Flows, is a self-service feature that delivers shoppers instant answers throughout the entire buying journey, whether it’s to find the right size or track an order.

Keep reading, and we’ll show you how to leverage self-service options at every customer touchpoint using Flows. We’ll start with 10 Flows examples from ecommerce brands, show you how to do it yourself on Gorgias, and then put all the learnings together with some best practices.

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What are Flows? 

Flows are designed to initiate simple interactions that quickly guide shoppers to the information or actions they need. They minimize website bounce rates and enhance automation rates for ecommerce customer support teams.

Flows enhance your website's chat by automating interactions with customers. They provide an immediate automated response with just one click or guide customers through a branching path that caters to their specific needs. This path could include multiple-choice questions or even prompt customers to log in and select an order.

Effective ways to use Flows:

  • Sizing guide
  • Returns and exchanges portal
  • Warranty claim handler
  • Free shipping checker
  • And more

Read more: The types of Flow steps

10 powerful use cases for Flows

Flows are so versatile that they can be used for every type of shopping experience, whether a shopper has just discovered you or they’re already a dedicated brand advocate.

We’ll go through 10 use cases that could benefit from a Flow, show you how real ecommerce brands use them, and how you can make them yourself with Gorgias Automate.

1. Answer shipping policy inquiries

Provide instant answers to customers' shipping inquiries with an easy-to-access shipping policy Flow directly on your website. This Flow efficiently resolves questions about shipping times and fees, helping customers quickly go from browsing to buying.

Nomad states their shipping policy in a Flow that conveniently answers processing time, shipping time, and shipping rates:

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Gorgias has a templated Flow to get you started. Here's what a shipping policy Flow might look like:

Shipping policy Flow builder
If your shipping policies vary by region, include options that reflect those regions.

2. Automate returns & exchanges 

If a customer isn’t satisfied with your product, don’t make it harder for them to return it.  A returns Flow not only clarifies your return policy to motivate a customer who's on the fence but also connects them directly to the right process to start a return or exchange. All they have to do is enter their order number and email, and they’re done.

No handling it on the agent side and waiting from the customer end.

Try out bag brand CALPAK’s returns Flow in the tour below:

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Gorgias has a templated Flow to get you started. Here's what a return and exchange Flow might look like:

Return and exchange policy on Gorgias
If returns policies vary for international locations, include an option for international customers to select in the Flow.

3. Recommend products to browsing customers

A product-matching quiz can solve decision fatigue if shoppers are faced with multiple versions of a product — like a supplement for different concerns, beverage flavors, or makeup for different skin tones. 

Sol de Janeiro, the fast-growing body care brand, boasts shower gels, body creams, and fragrances of different scents and colors. To prevent customers from feeling overwhelmed, Sol de Janeiro offers product-matching quizzes.

For example, their What body cream is right for me? quiz asks customers about their main skin concern. If a customer’s concern is smooth skin, they’ll recommend a body cream supporting skin elasticity. If the concern is firmer-looking skin, they recommend a cream rich in antioxidants.

Here’s what the Flow looks like on Sol de Janeiro’s website:

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Gorgias has a templated Flow to get you started. Here's what a simple product recommendation Flow might look like:

Product recommendation template on Gorgias
A product recommendation flow can consist of one or multiple questions.

4. Manage subscriptions in a few clicks

Seventy-four percent of customers forget they’re paying for a subscription, based on C+R Research. Keep customer relationships honest and show customers that they have full control over their memberships, whether they want to upgrade, downgrade, or cancel their subscription plans.

Even if you have a customer portal for managing subscriptions, not all customers will look for it on their own. A Flow can bridge this gap by guiding customers directly to the portal while significantly reducing the volume of subscription-related tickets in your inbox.

Online vet care service Dutch lays it all out with a subscription management Flow, providing customers with straightforward instructions: 

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Gorgias has a templated Flow to get you started. Here's what a subscription management Flow might look like:

Subscription management template on Gorgias
The subscription management Flow template provides information about changing subscription frequency, products, delivery details, payment information, and cancellation.

5. Display your warranty policy

Big ticket purchases need extra support in case of defective parts. Tell customers you’ve got their back by displaying your warranty policy upfront. You’ll ease their concerns and earn their loyalty knowing their premium buy is protected.

Bidet brand TUSHY sells premium bidets. To provide similarly premium customer experiences, they have a 12-month guarantee on equipment and parts. They present their warranty policy Flow on their website:

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Gorgias has a templated Flow to get you started. Here's what a warranty policy Flow might look like:

Warranty policy on the Flow builder

6. Notify customers about product restocks

“Sold Out” or “Out of Stock” aren’t the nicest words to see on a product page, especially if you’re a repeat customer ready to buy your favorite product. To keep customers in the loop, create a Flow that lets them know the status of your products.

For the baby stroller brand Zoe, popular products sell out quickly. To efficiently manage customer inquiries, they created a When are you expecting a restock? Flow. It informs customers about product availability and also encourages them to leave their email address or SMS number. This ensures they can purchase a stroller as soon as it's back in stock and allows Zoe to connect with them for future marketing efforts.

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Here's what a restock notification Flow might look like:

Restock flow in the flow builder
A restock flow can contain as few as three steps.

7. Troubleshoot an order

Products may require additional assistance depending on their usage. These can be products like electronics, apparel, and furniture. If customers are asking the same troubleshooting question, it would be best to add a troubleshooting Flow.

Check out how CAKES handles product issues with a simple Troubleshoot Flow:

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Gorgias has a templated Flow to get you started. Here's what a troubleshooting Flow might look like:

8. Welcome new customers

Nothing beats a warm welcome, especially for new customers who are just starting their journey with your brand. A welcome Flow is essential for engaging these newcomers right from the start. It provides them with crucial product education and relevant information, setting the tone for a supportive customer relationship. 

Take a look at how Crunch Labs, STEM building kits for kids, assists customers with a welcome Flow:

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Here's what a welcome Flow might look like:

Welcome flow
A welcome flow can address multiple FAQs within one flow.

9. Ensure perfect product matches with a sizing guide

Apparel brands face frequent sizing inquiries that can lead to returns. A sizing guide Flow provides clear, self-service information upfront, reducing sizing issues. This Flow acts as a self-service tool that customers can use to find their correct size before purchasing. 

Here’s how gender-inclusive apparel brand Both& guides customers to the right size:

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Gorgias has a templated Flow to get you started. Here's what a sizing guide Flow might look like:

Sizing guide flow

10. Answer pre-sales questions

Unanswered pre-sales questions can deter purchases. A pre-sales question Flow delivers immediate, thorough answers, leads to a boost in customer confidence, and reduces post-purchase dissatisfaction.

Organic soap brand Dr. Bronner’s provides shelf life information for all their products with a Flow:

Do it yourself on Gorgias

Here's what a pre-sales question Flow might look like:

Pre-sales flow
Pre-sales questions aim to alleviate customer concerns before they decide to buy your product.

Keep these Flows best practices in mind

Stick to 1-step Flows to maximize automation potential 

Single-step Flows are the most engaging Flows because there’s no opportunity for shoppers to drop off. Single-step Flows can link out to additional resources, like a Help Center article or a returns and subscription portal through tools like Loop Returns or Recharge. 

💡 Pro Tip: Keep Flows to a maximum of five steps. Any more and you're likely to lose customers’ attention.

Include shipping and returns policies in your Flows

Online stores’ top-performing Flows are almost always about shipping and return policies. Make sure to anticipate customer questions by creating a Flow for each policy, succinctly answering questions like:

Shipping Policy:

  • How long does shipping take?
  • How much does shipping cost?
  • Where do you ship?
  • Where is my order? (with a link to Order Management tracking if possible)

Return Policy:

  • What is the return window?
  • Cost of return shipping
  • Condition item(s) must be in
  • How do I initiate a return? (with a link to the Return Portal if possible)

Create Flows for each language

Flows will not appear for shoppers unless the language of the Flow matches the language of the shopper's browser — including regional languages. 

If a Flow is only in English (UK), it will not show up for American shoppers whose browsers are in English (US).

If you sell internationally, we highly recommend adding all possible languages to Flows, including regional languages.

Note: Gorgias Chat supports 15 languages, including English (US and UK), French (France and Canada), Spanish, Danish, Swedish, Italian, Dutch, German, Norwegian, Czech, Brazilian Portuguese, Japanese, and Finnish.

Read more: Multi-language support for Chat

Link to other self-service tools (like Loop, Recharge, Help Center, etc.)

Flows often automate interactions when they send customers to another page (like a Recharge login page or a Loop portal, or even sometimes a Help Center article). 

If a customer’s inquiry could be solved with one of these tools, include a link to the right page in the Flow’s automated answer.

Automate engagement with Gorgias Automate

Join brands like Shinesty that use Gorgias Automate to transform their customer experience. By using Flows, Quick Responses, Order Management, Article Recommendations, AI Autoresponders, and AI Agent, Shinesty has been able to automate over 50% of their customer tickets. 

Book a demo now and be a part of the 15,000+ ecommerce brands using Gorgias to transform their customer experiences.

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There’s More to Chat Than You Think: Debunking 5 Chat Myths

By Christelle Agustin
6 min read.
0 min read . By Christelle Agustin

Customers who use chat support are 2.8 times more likely to convert than those who don’t. Despite its proven impact, misconceptions around chat’s limited scope — reducing it to only live interactions — persist, creating a missed opportunity for the online stores that could benefit from it the most. 

The reality is chat is a versatile tool that can adjust to company needs, whether it’s a self-service tool that runs on its own, a channel for providing live support, or both.

For ecommerce businesses on the fence about incorporating chat into their customer service operations, we're here to clear up five of the most common myths about chat’s functions, costs, and benefits. After that, we’ll lay out a five-step guide to efficiently set up chat so you can start delighting customers now. 

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What’s the difference between Live Chat and Chat?

Live chat is real-time communication that allows customers to interact with a customer service representative instantly. It's the digital equivalent of walking into a store and speaking directly with an employee.

On the other hand, chat is more than just live interactions; it includes automated responses that ensure customers receive support, even without agents. This hybrid approach allows businesses to deliver 24/7 customer support.

Chat solutions, like Gorgias Chat, blend live chat's on-demand nature with automation and AI. Chat allows businesses to provide support regardless of time zone and staff availability.

‎Five chat myths debunked

Confusion about what chat can do often discourages businesses from leveraging the powerful customer service tool. Below, we’ll be myth-busting five common misconceptions about chat to reveal its true potential.

Myth 1: Chat is expensive

Contrary to popular belief, chat can be a cost-effective solution to operate customer service. Brands can earn 10x more revenue by implementing chat and, in turn, operate a smaller support team. Support agents can be costly, so using chat to deflect tickets can be a quick way to optimize both time and budget.

Ron Shah quote

Myth 2: Chat is only for big companies

Chat's usefulness transcends business size and breaks down silos in customer service by allowing customers to get answers on their own time. As a customer service tool, any business engaging with customers can benefit greatly from it to tackle pre-sales questions and resolve issues efficiently.

Myth 3: Chat requires staff to operate

As previously mentioned, chat can handle both live and automated interactions, which means no agents are required to manage it. Online stores can set up chat on their websites, allowing it to run 24/7. Businesses can decide whether to enable live chat or keep it fully automated.

RipSkirt uses Chat to intake offline chat messages.
Chat can intake offline messages and operate 24/7 without agents.

Related: Customer service outsourcing: why, when, and how

Myth 4: Chat increases your tickets

Due to automation-based conversations in chat, ticket volume does not necessarily increase when customers use chat. A ticket is only created when a customer converses with a live agent. Unlike using social media as a support channel, chat empowers customers to self-serve and resolve issues on their own.

A customer gets their issue resolved by a chatbot.
Chat can resolve customer issues in seconds, preventing the need for customers to create more tickets.

Myth 5: Chat decreases customer satisfaction

Contrary to popular belief, chat has a positive impact on customer satisfaction. Based on Gorgias data, brands experienced a 1% increase in CSAT when using automation, including chat. The improved satisfaction can be attributed to the efficiency of automated answers and the absence of wait times.

Companies that used Gorgias Automate experienced a 1% increase in CSAT score
According to Gorgias data, customer satisfaction increases by 1% when customer service automation is used.

Myth 6: Email is just as good as chat

While email remains a staple, chat offers immediate engagement in the shopping flow that can create opportunities for upselling. For example, an on-site campaign toolkit like Gorgias Convert becomes a seamless extension of your sales and support strategy with the ability to recommend products within chat. 

Since chat simplifies the process of reaching out, it is also easier for companies to build trust with their customers. The fewer hurdles customers have to jump over to get an answer, the more readily they will trust your brand.

Chat is a more accessible support channel than email

Read more: You’re doing it wrong: better ways to use email as a customer service channel

The best Chat setup in 4 easy steps

Now that you know chat isn’t expensive and can give you a great return on investment, you can start making the most of it. Here’s the optimal way to set up chat in four, simple steps.

1. Customize your chatbot avatar

A study from the University of Göttingen found that customers value clarity on whether they're conversing with a bot or a human agent. Their satisfaction did not dwindle when issues went unresolved, knowing they were interacting with a chatbot.

You can add “Bot” to your chat name on Gorgias whenever automated messages are sent. Enabling this improves the customer experience by letting them know exactly who they are talking to.

In addition, customizing your chatbot avatar to your company logo instead of leaving it as the default robot avatar adds a personal touch. If live chat is enabled, uploading individual profile photos for your agents will help customers feel more comfortable since they’re able to associate a face with the agent they’re talking to.

2. Set up Quick Responses to answer frequently asked questions

Frequently asked questions can quickly dominate your inbox, but with Quick Responses, you can offer fully automated answers. This allows you to provide customer service on an international scale without worrying about increasing agent workload.

Gorgias Automate upgrades your customer experience with an entire automation toolkit that includes Quick Responses in Chat. You can display up to six Quick Responses at a time, providing customers with immediate answers to their questions.

RipSkirt uses Quick Responses to answer customers even when their support team is offline.

3. Set live chat hours

While many assume live chat needs to be available for extended hours, the truth is that live chat hours can be tailored to what suits your brand best, even if that's just one hour a day. The key is to clearly communicate when an agent will respond to customers outside of these hours. 

Customers prefer live chat because of the lack of wait times, so if you’re offering live chat, be sure your agents meet customer expectations by answering chat conversations in 30 seconds. Strengthening customer relationships is crucial to building trust and, therefore, increasing your ecommerce retention rate. On Gorgias, setting your business hours will directly update how Chat appears to customers.

Bokksu uses Gorgias Automate to provide Quick Responses, Order Management, and live chat
When support agents are online, a green icon will appear next to their avatars on Gorgias Chat.

4. Build a Help Center to provide Article Recommendations in Chat

A help center is a database of articles that range from frequently asked questions and guides to video tutorials and policies. On Gorgias, Chat can use your Help Center articles to enrich automated answers with detailed information. For instance, fashion and apparel stores can create a sizing guide article, which Chat can then reference, guiding customers directly to the information they need. 

Article Recommendations in Chat
Gorgias Chat provides article recommendations based on.the contents of your Help Center.

Accomplish the work of 3 agents with Gorgias Automate

Gorgias Automate enabled luxury luggage company July to handle the equivalent workload of three extra agents. With tools like Chat, July went from handling repetitive queries to focusing on more significant customer issues. This significant change enhanced their support efficiency and customer satisfaction. 

Want to become a success story? Discover how Gorgias Automate can streamline your support workflow and elevate customer experience. Book a demo today.

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Why Automation is the Future of CX

By Halee Sommer
6 min read.
0 min read . By Halee Sommer

TL;DR:

  • Automation increases repeat purchase rates, boosts response times, improves resolution times, and allows brands to scale faster while saving time and money.
  • 94% of ecommerce experts agree that automation is going to be more important in ecommerce.
  • Brands saw an 8-point increase in repeat purchase rates in 28 days by handling repetitive inquiries with automation.
  • Gorgias users report 52% faster resolutions, reducing response and resolution times, making customers happier.

For most CX teams, budgets are getting tighter, but tickets are on the rise. 

With strapped teams and incoming customer issues, automation is becoming an ideal tool. 

94% of Gorgias customers agree, according to our recent survey. 

Supporting automation in your workflow now is a surefire way to set your team up for success. Let’s explore why we’ll see an AI and automation-driven future within CX. 

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Automation increases repeat purchase rates 

Happy customers are the best fuel for growth. Why? 

Happy customers want to come back to shop with you, and we know that repeat customers give long-term value to your brand. 

Findings from 12,000+ Gorgias merchants show that repeat customers: 

  • Account for only 21% of customers but generate 44% of revenue
  • Make up 46% of orders
  • Generate 300% more revenue than first-time customers

Our research also found that it is five times less expensive for a brand to retain an existing customer than it is to source a new one. 

If you want to see improvement in your repeat purchase rates, automation is the way to go. Automation can handle repetitive inquiries from customers, like “Where’s my order?” so your team can focus on high-touch problems. 

Brands that use Gorgias to fuel automation see improved repeat purchase rates. Within 28 days, merchants who automated up to 20% of tickets increased their repeat purchase rate by 8 points.

Automation boosts response times

Gorgias's research found that 90% of U.S. customers expect an immediate customer service response. Of those customers, 60% want that response in 10 minutes or less. 

A significant advantage of automation is that it effectively gives you a zero-second response time. When you trust automation to handle even a tiny percentage of your incoming tickets, you will see a decrease in your first-response time (FRT)

After Shinesty implemented Gorgias's Automate, the company saw a 65% boost in its first response time. This change in FRT made a monumental impact on the support team's workload.

Thanks to Automate, Shinesty is able to deflect 55% of incoming tickets with automation, giving CX agents more time to deliver personalized and proactive support to customers. 

On this improvement, Molly Kerrigan, Senior Director of Retention at Shinesty, says: 

“Automate has allowed us to focus on improving customer experience from the ground up, because we're not so deep in ‘ticket town.’”

Thanks to automation features from Gorgias, Shinesty gained the best of both worlds, providing excellent customer service while saving the budget. 

Automation improves resolution times

An added benefit of lightning-fast response times is getting to a resolution faster. This is more than just a nice-to-have — it makes your customers happier. 

As we said earlier, happy customers are more likely to shop again and cite an overall more positive experience with your brand. This is a full-circle moment that shows how a slight change in workflow can lead to significantly positive results. 

In 2022, Gorgias studied over 10,000 ecommerce brands to understand the connection between customer experience and growth. We found that lowering the average resolution time to under 6 hours gave companies a 2% boost in revenue. 

With Gorgias, customers see resolution times improve dramatically, with automatically handled tickets resolving issues 52% faster than those handled without.

That happened at Psycho Bunny, where the customer support team saw resolution times improve by a staggering  99.4% after implementing Gorgias’s AI Agent to automate 26% of customer tickets.  

With AI Agent to support the team, Psycho Bunny’s human customer support agents were free to spend more time on higher-value tasks beyond answering FAQs.

“Our customer support KPIs are already fantastic: we're already leading in the industry,” says Tosha Moyer, Senior Customer Experience Manager at Psycho Bunny. “To improve on that, we need AI — it’s not physically or financially possible with human agents alone.”

Automation allows brands to scale faster

Growth is always the goal, and incorporating automation into your existing CX workflow is a tool for achieving that growth. 

Brands that use Gorgias's automation tools can successfully scale their customer service operations quickly.  

For example, just 30 days after deploying Gorgias's automation features, brands see an average 1% increase in CSAT. 

It's a small move in the meter that has a long-lasting impact on team morale, improved customer interactions, and a more positive experience for shoppers. 

Obvi relies on Gorgias’s automation features to efficiently handle 150+ tickets each day with a slim team. 

Gorgias Automate manages about 27% of Obvi’s incoming tickets — which consist of low-priority, simple, or repetitive customer inquiries. This frees up the support team to answer complex tickets and drive sales, leading to an astonishing 10x boost in revenue over BFCM. 

Even better, Obvi was able to achieve all of this after onboarding Gorgias in just two weeks. 

“AI is going to help us transform ourselves into deeper thinkers by taking over simple, standardized functions,” says Ron Shah, CEO and Co-founder at Obvi. “In the ecommerce world, Gorgias is getting ahead with doing that for customer support — they’re the center of the AI revolution, and that is the standard customers are expecting.”

Automation saves time & money

Your team can focus on more meaningful work by automating responses to repetitive questions or low-priority tickets. 

Quickly solving a customer's problem also means they can get back to checkout faster. 

But remember, automation is a tool, not a replacement for human agents. Automation helps teams of all sizes drive value, gaining extra support without spending more overhead. 

‎July turns to Automate to tackle 30% of incoming tickets, taking on the workload of three extra agents

In this case, the company has the demand to support a bigger team but not the budget. Automation helps July fill this gap to provide a seamless customer experience without overextending their human teammates. 

“We immediately deflected 450 tickets a month just by setting up some automated Quick Responses,” says Alex Naoumidis, Head of Operations and CX at July. 

“Now, we don’t waste the customer or the agent’s time with basic questions that probably don’t require any human interaction.”

Gorgias Automate: Your solution to an automated future

Gorgias is leading the revolution in AI-driven customer support solutions

Features like our AI-generated Help Center, AI Agent, Flows, and Quick Responses allow brands to autonomously answer customer questions and track and measure AI-customer interactions to create more meaningful customer experiences and transform how support is delivered. 

Start a free trial to see Gorgias’s AI and automation features in action.

Why Is Customer Service Important

Why Customer Service Is Important (According To A VP of CX)

By Amanda Kwasniewicz
15 min read.
0 min read . By Amanda Kwasniewicz

I firmly believe everyone should experience working in customer support because, let’s face it, working in support isn't always recognized for the challenging job it is. 

The importance of customer service for brand success has been proven time and again. Yet, customer support continues to get regarded as a necessary cost the business has to bite. It's often under-resourced and under-performs as a result, reinforcing the perception that support brings little value.

I’m on a mission to change that. 

I'm Amanda Kwasniewicz, VP of Customer Experience at Love Wellness, and my journey has taught me that we customer support professionals have to be loud and proud about the importance of our work, since we're repairing a pretty damaged reputation.

In this article, I will share practical tips and firsthand experiences to help you showcase the significant impact of customer support on your bottom line, and make the case for more budget and respect in the organization.

Why is customer service important

A great customer experience is crucial to any business. And at the heart of that experience is good customer service.

Right now, every small business owner is experiencing the frustrations of rising customer acquisition costs. The solution? Leverage the relationships with customers you already have by focusing on repeat purchases and customer lifetime value (LTV). This strategy is much more profitable: Keeping customers costs much less than attracting new ones, and returning customers generate 300% more revenue than first-time shoppers (according to Gorgias data).

Repeat customers generate 300% more revenue

Your customer service agents are your brand’s frontline representation. Whether you’re a small business or a large enterprise, great reps have the capacity to enable sales and keep customers coming back. And undertrained or ill-equipped reps have the capacity to drive new customers away and dissolve relationships with current customers. 

Simply put, customer service is important because it has a huge impact on your revenue. Let’s break that truth down into some specifics.

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7 ways customer service impacts your bottom line

From generating more referrals to increasing your average order value, there are several benefits to offering a great customer service experience. 

1. Excellent service increases conversion rates

The truth is, new customers are often hesitant to trust a company that they’ve never done business with before. 

Studies have found that 18% will abandon their cart if they don’t trust the website with their credit card information. And, even if a customer trusts your business enough to make a purchase, still roughly 70% of all online shopping carts are left abandoned

Reduce cart abandonment

Why? Some of the top reasons are

  • A complicated checkout process
  • Questions about product pricing
  • Problems with payment 

These are all customer problems that live chat support agents can address proactively, which will increase trust and decrease abandoned carts. Adding live chat to your website can boost conversions by 12%.

Tip: Provide pre-sales support

Picture a shopping experience where uncertainty is met with immediate guidance, and questions are answered before they even arise—this is the essence of Love Wellness' commitment to elevating pre-sales support.

On our product description pages, we prominently feature 

  • Links to our general FAQ page
  • A striking red button on the bottom right corner for customers to reach out and connect with our support team via email. 
  • A FAQ block on the product page with answers related to the product being viewed.

Screenshot of Love Wellness’ FAQ block on the Good Girl Probiotics page. The brand answers the top questions shoppers have about this product, such as what is a probiotic and what is a microbiome.
Good Girl Probiotics' FAQ page

In addition to what we do at Love Wellness, you can enable chat campaigns to proactively guide customers through the checkout process or answer common questions that are blockers to purchasing.  

Chat campaigns can trigger when certain conditions are met (like visiting/dwelling on a certain page or being a repeat shopper). You can hit these targeted shoppers with a message, like offering personalized product recommendations or providing a unique discount code. Now that’s an experience worth telling your friends about.

Proactive chat campaigns to upsell

Remember: Customer service involves more than just resolving customer issues post-purchase. Support reps also act as sales agents, answering pre-sales inquiries and offering discounts to encourage orders.

Where CX impacts the customer journey

Already using Gorgias? Learn how our platform integrated with referral platforms like Smile.io and LoyaltyLion to combine the forces of your word-of-mouth marketing and customer experience.

2. Personalized customer service drives repeat business

According to a report from Salesforce, 97% of marketers report an improvement in business results due to personalization. Customer service is no exception: including customers' names, avoiding asking for the same information multiple times, and providing customer-specific recommendations all help build customer loyalty.

Your customer support platform should make personalization easy by showing a customer’s order and conversation history with your brand, so reps have the full context when speaking to customers:

Customer profiles

And, with a helpdesk like Gorgias, you can build templated Macros, which automatically pull customer data into your messages (names, order numbers, shipping addresses, etc). 

Personalized support

Tip: Offer premium support at key stages of the buyer’s journey 

One way we offer personalized customer support at Love Wellness is our “Shop with a wellness specialist” program. Shoppers can take a short quiz, get matched with an expert, and text that specialist directly to build a personalized wellness routine.

Screenshot of Love Wellness’s “Shop with a wellness expert pop-up.” The pop-up explains how the program works, which has three steps: Take the quiz, text with a specialist, and shop your recommendations.
Love Wellness' "Shop with a wellness expert" pop-up with the option to take a short quiz, chat with a specialist, or shop personalized recommendations.

Omnichannel customer service

3. Customer service data holds key information

Customer service can be a goldmine of key data that benefits the entire team, serving as a wellspring of insights that drive informed decisions and overall business success. 

How? Customer service acts as a direct line to your customers' thoughts and experiences. By consistently collecting and analyzing feedback, you gain an understanding of pain points, preferences, and trends that can influence product development, marketing strategies, and overall business direction.

Tip: Collect customer feedback often

One word: convenience.

Your customers should be able to share feedback without leaping through hoops. 

And, when you've got a vault of feedback, don't let it gather digital dust. Your team has so much data they can review between channels like email, SMS, chat, and social media—both compliments and complaints. You need to be willing to listen to every customer’s needs. 

We have a channel in Slack dedicated to customer feedback. Dropping in feedback is part of the team’s daily and weekly responsibilities, which helps them get really familiar with all of the content. It also allows our team to dissect them and collaborate on how we can improve. You could also schedule recurring feedback share sessions with the Product or Website teams, or even invite them directly into Gorgias (at no extra cost) and create a dedicated view for product feedback, website feedback, and so on.

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Motivate your team by showcasing positive customer feedback in your Slack channel or workplace messaging platform.


4. A great customer service experience drives referrals

Happy customers are much more likely to recommend your brand to others than customers who have a poor customer service experience. 

94% of U.S. shoppers will recommend companies with service they rate as “very good.”

Along with increasing the likelihood of organic referrals, a great customer service experience can earn your more positive reviews.

Considering 95% of customers report reading online reviews before making a purchasing decision, showcasing just how important these reviews can be when it comes to attracting new business. We have a whole page dedicated to this on the Love Wellness website.

There’s also a filter option on every product page review widget so that shoppers can see the most common things people are saying about a product and filter down accordingly. 

Screenshot of one of Love Wellness’s product reviews page that shows the filters shoppers can use to sort reviews. Each buyer talks about what product they bought and why they love it.

Tip: Train everyone on how to have a customer-first mindset

Customer service is one of the main ways we build trust with customers, which is especially important in the personal care and women's health niche. Our aim is to provide a safe space for questions that customers might not even be comfortable asking a doctor.

At Love Wellness, we believe that every single team member plays a vital role in creating a haven of care and understanding. That’s why we created an immersive customer experience training program that involves each and every one of us, including the president of the company and even our office manager!

This program is about truly understanding Love Wellness' purpose, from top to bottom. Whether I'm involved in customer service management, product sourcing, managing our online presence, or crafting compelling copy, I've come to realize that a customer-first mindset is the key. 

Bonus reading: See Gorgias’ tips on customer service training to help improve the quality of support.

Tip: Create self-service resources

Your customer support team can create self-service resources like an FAQ page or Help Center to educate customers about your return policies, shipping practices, and the quality of your materials or ingredients. And by proactively during the pre-purchase process, you can provide first-time customers with the answers they need to make a purchase.

Here’s what ours looks like at Love Wellness, which answers key pre-sales questions about each product, plus frequently-asked questions about payment, shipping, and more.

GIF of Love Wellness’s FAQ page. The GIF shows the cursor clicking through various questions to highlight how each one has a dropdown answer. The cursor also clicks on various FAQ categories, such as “product, orders, and shipping.”

5. Satisfied customers have higher average order values

By addressing any questions or concerns that may be preventing a customer from making a purchase, proactive customer support can boost your AOV by encouraging customers to purchase additional products they might not have bought otherwise.

The proof is in the pudding: businesses that offer proactive live chat customer support generate a 10%-15% higher AOV than those that do not. 

At Love Wellness we have a proactive outreach program for delivery issues, with the goal of reaching out to the customer to triage before they reach out to us. Since starting this, of our ~250 tickets, 105 have received a CSAT and the score is a solid 5 across the board!

According to Gorgias data, repeat customers make up only 21% of the average brand’s customer base but generate 44% of that brand’s revenue thanks to these higher cart values:

Repeat customers generate more revenue

Tip: Find opportunities to sell more

Another effective way that customer support boosts AOV is by providing your sales team with upsell and cross-sell opportunities.

For example, at Love Wellness we make sure to explain to customers how they should use the product on the description page. In this section, we also call out additional products that pair well with what they’re looking at.

Screenshot of Love Wellness’ “How to use” content block on a product page. There is a red box and arrow pointing to highlight the section where Love Wellness tells shoppers what to pair the product with.
To upsell, Love Wellness plugs their other products in the How to Use section of product pages.

6. Good customer service increases customer loyalty

One well-known rule of business is that attracting new customers is always more expensive than marketing to your existing customer base. 

And fun fact: A staggering 95% of U.S. consumers use customer service quality as a factor when determining whether or not to do business with a company. 

My point? By prioritizing customer relationships and positive customer experiences, you can ensure that the customers you attract remain loyal to your brand and offer as much value as possible over the full course of their relationship with your business.

Tip: Fulfill your promises to customers

Promises made, promises kept. Make sure you have the means to follow through on your claims—and the backup available when mistakes happen

My two-fold advice:

  • Build trust: If you're advertising 2-day shipping, get the necessary resources and operational capacity to consistently meet this commitment. 
  • Tip: during a high volume period, especially over holidays, if there's even a chance that your shipping commitment isn't going to be met 100%, temporarily remove that option to keep expectations realistic.
  • Manage customer expectations: Claims like "better taste" are subjective. Highlight provable benefits, such as health advantages, to set realistic expectations.

When customers consistently receive what they expect, they are more likely to become repeat buyers and advocates for your brand.

7. Great customer service reduces marketing spend

Between social media, content, advertising, and SEO, marketing can get very expensive very quickly. For small businesses, these expenses cost thousands of dollars every month

I’ve already mentioned how exceptional customer service improves customer retention rate. By investing in your support team, your brand can generate positive word-of-mouth, reviews, and repeat customer service. 

This means you’ll draw more value from your existing customers rather than spending money trying to attract new ones, which is a much more cost-effective and sustainable path to growth.

Customer acquisition vs customer retention

Tip: Use tools that are well-integrated

In the past, we had a custom tech stack that operated in isolation, causing manual errors and a great deal of confusion. We were practically solving puzzles blindfolded when something went wrong.

After finally having enough, we dismantled our old tech stack and reconstructed it with components that had native integrations already in place. We've learned the hard way that a well-integrated tech stack is the backbone of efficient customer service.

There's no more frustrating tab-switching or tedious copy/pasting to handle tasks like creating discount codes, editing orders, and processing refunds — trust me, it’s saving us from a lot of hair-pulling moments.

One tool that has been a game-changer for us is Gorgias, thanks to its integrations with Shopify (ecommerce), Okendo (reviews), Yotpo (loyalty rewards and referrals), and Recharge (subscriptions). These integrations have streamlined our customer support process by helping agents make changes to those other tools (like refunding an order or updating subscription status) without changing tabs. It also helps our agents offer more personalized support (with less back-and-forth) by giving them the full customer context, right in the ticket view.

Customer profiles

Tip: Take an omnichannel approach to customer support

Every customer has a different communication preference. Omnichannel support makes it easy for them to reach you on various channels like text (SMS support), live chat support on your website, and social media support).

Offering omnichannel communication is important and can be effective, but only if it's tailored to the consideration of your customers and business needs.

For example, the bulk of our inbox is subscription management, so tackling those tickets via SMS is not effective for us. The messages are too long, and often include details customers need to hang onto to reference back to, so email is by far the better channel. 

Want more tips? Read our list of customer service best practices.

What happens when customer service isn’t prioritized

We've all been there — waiting endlessly on hold, being bounced around different departments, and feeling the frustration mount. It's not a feeling we relish. 

Take contacting your bank, for instance. The last thing that crosses your mind after that ordeal is calling them again anytime soon. Instead, it's more like, "Phew, glad that's over. Hope I won't have to do that again."

Now, transpose that to an ecommerce scenario. A lousy customer service experience can easily push a shopper to the point of churn, or even talk bad about your brand online or to their friends.

Above, we discussed the impact of great customer service on your bottom line. But the real thing to be aware of is just how damaging bad customer service is — enough to tank a great product, brand, and company. 

The costs of subpar service are staggering, ranging from $75 billion to a jaw-dropping $1.6 trillion annually. Plus, according to Retail Dive, a whopping 73% of customers won’t return to your brand after just a couple of poor customer service expenses. 

There’s a compounding snowball effect beyond losing customers as well: your customer service team gets burnt out and quits, you hire quickly (and not carefully) to replace those reps, and you’re left with an untrained and understaffed team. 

The cost of bad support

As a result, your company has poor customer service, so execs never get to see the impact that good experiences could have on your bottom line, leading to even fewer resources for customer success. The cycle continues from there.

Thankfully, good customer service can have the opposite effect.

Example: Excellent customer service helped Best Buy overcome bankruptcy

CB Insights shared a story about how, in 2012, Best Buy grappled with a $1.7 billion loss due to rising ecommerce and Amazon's Price Check app. The company turned this around by putting customer service at the forefront by 

  • Empowering sales staff with thorough training that focused on being friendly and knowledgeable
  • Introducing a bold price-matching guarantee to keep shoppers engaged
  • Reviving the employee discount program
  • Offering personalized in-home consultation with a technology advisor

This customer-centric approach revitalized the brand. If they hadn’t made these improvements, Best Buy might not be here today.

Transform customer support into your new growth engine with Gorgias

Looking back, I've realized that nailing customer support is all about staying ahead of the game and making smart moves — fast.

Remember, your customer support situation can impact your revenue in ways you might not imagine, and profitability is essential these days. The goal is to ensure your customer support strategy cultivates loyalty rather than driving customers away. That's where Gorgias comes in.

Designed exclusively for ecommerce, Gorgias equips online stores with powerful tools to enhance customer interactions, ultimately driving revenue growth, including:

I encourage you to book a short time with the team to learn all about it. Gorgias has been a game-changer for Love Wellness and I’m confident it can be for your brand too.

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