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Salesforce Connections 2018: 4 Key Takeaways for Transforming the Customer Experience

By Jordan Dooley

We’re still reliving the excitement from another great year at Salesforce Connections, and we keep thinking back to how aptly named conference attendees were. All of the marketers. E-commerce pros, and retailers were called Trailblazers, and really, in today’s world, that’s exactly what they are.  

It’s no secret that the digital revolution has brought massive disruption to the way people shop, pay, and interact with your business. That’s caused challenges, but also exciting opportunities to engage customers in new ways.

Looking back at Connections 2018, our team put together four takeaways, all geared towards Trailblazers like you who are paving the way toward transforming the customer experience.

1. Mobile Shopping Experiences Will be a Major Driver of Success

Consumer shopping behaviors on mobile was a burning hot topic this year. With the explosion of smartphones and tablets, on-the-go shopping is the new norm.

Your products are, essentially, always in your customers’ hands. That’s a lot of power. Except many merchants lack mobile-friendly websites which is leading to shockingly-high cart abandonment rates.

Salesforce shared quite a bit about it’s new StoreFront Responsive Architecture (SFRA) release. The release puts a lot of emphasis on improving the mobile shopping experience, including well-designed product pages that focus on visual appeal, pinning of important navigation tools such as “Add to Cart,” and navigation that’s intuitive for mobile browsing.

A big stumbling point for retailers on mobile is the checkout experience. Making a purchase should be frictionless — always — with a simple, streamlined checkout page that also gives shoppers multiple ways to pay.

As with the web, mobile user experience can’t be overlooked! When consumers can swipe and tap their way right through to checkout, that means more conversions for you.

2. Customers Will Give You Lifetime Loyalty, If You Earn It

Consumers are individuals and when they shop, they act like it. For e-commerce merchants and marketers, the focus is no longer on how you can sell a particular product to as many people as possible. Instead, individualized consumer treatment comes first.

Are you creating custom experiences for particular individuals? That’s the future! If you provide customers with continuous value from the moment they land on your site, they’ll remember it.

And you’ll stand out, miles ahead of competitors. It’s not about the sales, it’s the customer first. When you earn their loyalty, shoppers will keep coming back, and that means a lifetime of sales, rather than a few purchases here and there.

3. Highly-Tailored Customer Experiences Are in Reach

Speaking of personalization…there are some pretty cool companies out there helping e-commerce merchants create relevant experiences tailored to the individual. We saw everything from AI tools to help customers select products to messaging apps for real-time conversations. Not to mention the growing capabilities for omnichannel experiences that link together the consumer product experience online and in-store.

The results of enhanced customer experiences like these are often groundbreaking. In the world of payments, using a payment gateway provider to offer shoppers more ways to pay enhances the checkout experience and ups conversions. Research shows that 75% of consumers are more likely to select an online merchant that offers instant financing over one that doesn’t.*

Forward-looking merchants are embracing tools like these to better serve their customers, providing shopping experiences that match up with their wants and needs.

4. Merchants Want to Give Consumers More Payment Choice

Cart abandonment is one of those dreaded topics for e-commerce merchants. It just won’t go away.

Increasing conversions at checkout, however, is possible by offering shoppers more payment options. Major retailers, including many at Salesforce Connections, are starting to embrace the trend.

Instant financing is proven to increase conversions and average order values by huge percentages. Heard of try-before-you-buy? With deferred payments, shoppers can have their order delivered, before they pay, so they can test out or try on the product first. They only pay for what they want to keep. The list goes on. You can reach more potential customers around the world by offering international payments options and make purchasing simple by supporting popular eWallet apps.

And that’s a wrap! Salesforce Connections 2018 highlighted, as we well know, the importance of customer experience and how to take yours to the next level.

Learn more about why merchants are buzzing about instant financing in this infographic. Or, set up a time to chat with our team.

*Consumer Attitudes Towards Instant Financing: Researchscape & Klarna