From social networks to purchase action, APIs in the service of a better customer experience in e-commerce? – Monitoring and Tribune > Data

The rapid rise of fashion, beauty and food influencers explains why e-commerce spending is also on the rise, with 43% of French consumers saying they use social media to discover new brands. The increasing online and omnichannel sales forcing traders to ensure that their stores, their online ordering, order processing and delivery systems of the last mile works perfectly. This means integrating data with disparate physical and online systems to gain a 360-degree view of the customer, monitor operations, and identify logistical issues that could hinder an optimized experience of the customer.

To meet these challenges, marketers turned application programming interfaces (APIs) and management platformsAPIs to create the unified services and seamless shopping experiences that consumers now want. APIs thus offer many services to retailers, whether it’s linking product pages to social media platforms, offering personalized recommendations or allowing customers to it’s easy to see if an item is out of stock online. is available at a local store. Let’s take a look at the three aspects of the customer journey how retailers can use APIs to reinvent themselves in today’s omnichannel world.

Before buying: provide real-time information faster?

Buyers are likely to look for theinspiration on social media than a brand’s online store, distributors use APIs to enter the value-added information customers want, when they need it.

Also read: The 10 retail and customer experience ideas to remember in October

This may include linking product pages to social platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Youtube or pinterest, ensuring they are constantly updated, or using APIs to instantly provide consumers with detailed product information. Linked to an inventory management tool, the APIs give buyers real-time visibility of sizes, colors or models available to a nearby store, or even receive real-time alerts when stocks of the items they consulted are low.

Some companies understand this. For example, to target teenagers, advertisers will be more selective TikTok and for moms, the investments will go to Facebook. Online advertising campaigns allow advertisers to specifically increase purchases from their website and/or encourage store visits. The APIs are key to the device to ensure optimal return on investment of these campaigns.

Also, giving customers the ability to create profiles and store wish lists throughout their long buying journey doesn’t just benefit consumers; merchants also gain valuable insights for future recommendations and restocking decisions that they otherwise would not have.

Finally, using API-enabled applications can be a important forecasting tool. In fact, the results of surveys conducted locally among the customers of a point of sale or the repeated requests of customers in the store constitute a rich source of information that can be used by the sign to optimize the decisions related to the stocks of their outlets.

Also read: New consumer needs, omnichannel issues

Purchasing: streamlining order management?

The consumers increasingly expect to create their own purchase journey, browse products on social platforms before looking for more details about product prices and features, whether through an online storefront or in a physical store to see an item for themselves. But it is not the only major part of the purchase decision process.

Consumers expect to be offered options such as in-store delivery, “Click and Collect”, or even the order and the withdrawal at the store. Also, they want to be notified every step of the way to know when their purchases will be available for delivery or collection. Using APIs to bridge disconnected physical and digital channels so customers can “shop anywhere” and receive their purchases in the way that best suits them is just the first step.

92% of consumers in France are looking for faster and cheaper delivery. Merchants use APIs to streamline order processing for in-store pickup or delivery to meet consumer expectations. They can also use APIs to connect and retrieve information from their logistics partners to use to regularly update customers on the progress of their order.

Here, it is really a question of providing the best customer experience that allows companies to gain an important factor of differentiation compared to its competitors. Logistics has therefore become a key competitive advantage. Amazon is a pioneer in this area with its Prime subscription which imposed the rule on e-merchants and retailers. But now the Uber, Deliveroo or even Carrefourwhich delivers within 1 hour, completely violated the norms in terms of logistics applied to e-commerce.

After Purchase: improving return processes?

Consumers now expect returns fast, simple and free. Merchants can no longer ignore this aspect of the shopping experience, so efficient returns management is now a key competitive advantage that helps build long-term customer loyalty.

The merchants can invest in APIs to streamline the returns process, which will allow them to meet customer expectations but also get products back on sale by consumers faster. But this is only part of this process. In fact, thanks to APIs, the customer service will have information on a customer’s profile and will also collect useful information on the reasons for the return – description or images deemed non-compliant, sending the wrong item , size error, item damaged during delivery, etc – so we can hopefully reduce return rates in the future.

But not only: simplifying and streamlining the return process reduces the carbon footprint, a new challenge for e-commerce. Veepee, the 9th site in France in terms of the number of customers according to the 2022 FEVAD ranking, now offers its members the “Re-turn” service, a new concept “CtoC” (“consumer to consumer”). This is about buying or selling an item from Veepee that is not suitable, directly to a member without going through the Relay Parcel box.

In conclusion, the APIs enable merchants to innovate and expand their omnichannel capabilities, whether it’s making it easy for consumers to start or end purchases through different distributors or eliminating friction points that frustrate customers. Data collected at various stages will allow merchants to interact more meaningfully with customers, optimize their operations, and make better inventory management decisions.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *