We’ve all been there – a recent purchase arrived late, you got something completely different than what you ordered, or it came damaged. You’re not happy, and rightly so – you just spent some hard-earned cash on that new product. Time to go to the computer, write a frustration-fueled email and give them a piece of your mind – you’ll never shop from them again!
After filling out the return forms, telling the company how they lost a customer, and sending the email, what do you get? An ugly, generic “Thanks for contacting us” email. If they don’t care enough to put effort into this, then why would you expect them to put effort into keeping you as a customer?
Imagine a different scenario: the same thing happens, you write your scathing email, send it but this time, you get an email with an apology, the exact information you had requested, when to expect a reply, and what steps need to be taken for final resolution. Isn’t this the kind of company you wouldn’t mind forgiving, and even purchasing from them again?
As your company scales and it gets harder to personally respond to every customer email, auto responders are the most efficient way to let your customers know that the message was received, while buying your team the necessary time to find a solution. And autoresponders, being your customers’ first contact with your support, are not just another touchpoint to align your branding across all communication. They can also lower your complaint rate during the customer support process.
This being said, not all autoresponders are equal – you need to create a well-designed autoresponder that provides real value to your customer.
Why do you need better autoresponder emails?
“Business owners are taking note of just how important having a beautiful and personable auto-reply email is. Without a community, you have no company, and without keeping your community engaged, it’ll slowly dwindle down to a mere customer base. Making sure that anything the community comes in contact with is as easy to digest, understand and love as you can make it is vital to any business’s long-term success.” – Alexandra Marin, the Director of Design at CodeCrew
With autoresponders, there’s an opportunity to align branding and support services. Your customers can have this one additional instance in which they consciously or subconsciously align your company with quality. They would immediately know that their worries are being taken care of.
The better your autoresponder design, the higher the customers’ perception of your company becomes. Because if they’re not happy with a company and want to express their dissatisfaction, a lack of effort and thought in your autoresponder only shows a lack of quality which will make the customer move away from your brand.
How to create great autoresponders
Every good company knows that creating the perfect autoresponder is no easy feat, but is also so incredibly valuable to the support process. While every sales, marketing, and customer support guru is actively trying to perfect the process for the ultimate customer experience, few know where to turn to find out exactly what works and what doesn’t.
If you think about it – it’s simple: learn from the best. Look at companies that are doing a great job, see how their autoresponders impact your view of their business, and craft your own message in a similar fashion. As with any part of your business, you’ll want to constantly be iterating new tests, but to get a quick leg up on your current messaging, we have 4 really solid emails that will get you headed down the right path in no time.
Here are 4 autoresponder emails to learn from:
The first thing you can do is to send helper articles in a clean design style just like the good folks from AirBNB did. These types of emails are not only really easy to digest and read, but also provide a lot of value through the links that are sent to the customers.
Typeform decided to reassure their customers of their constant efforts to improve and revamp their help center, bringing a strong vibe of knowledge and establishing their support staff as highly valuable resources that will solve any issue thrown their way.
Revue.com decided to go the complete opposite direction and be as laid-back as one can be, using a popular meme to calm things down and increase satisfaction levels.
The beautification of auto-responders can also make customer support inquiry volumes reduce, saving costs on support personnel, support systems, etc. Zach, co-founder of GreenPal, the Uber of Lawn Care, excitedly states that “we noticed a decrease in people responding to autoresponders by 38%” from only a handful of tweaks to their auto-responder messages.
Needless to say, the power of beautified messaging can have a massive impact. Zach confirmed that this had a solid impact on the time spent by the support team with tickets: “That means that these people were helped out automatically with the information that we included in our auto-response and they were not left wondering if somebody was going to be reaching back out to them with links to helpful content so they can help themselves”.
What is the business impact of autoresponders?
The butterfly effect is strong in the world of auto-responder email beautification – although it may appear to be a small change to just one facet of a company’s interaction with their customer, that couldn’t be further from the truth.
As unlikely as it may seem that a beautified auto-responder email would contribute to ROI, companies are actually seeing the positive effects in great numbers. Spanning across more than just a better customer support experience, autoresponders also are an effective tool for increasing conversions.
Sean from SellMax, a leader in the online car-buying space, says “we’ve seen an 11% increase in conversions since [beautifying our auto-responders], which has been an impressive ROI. The customization of the autoresponders has also helped us to break through this stigma [in the car-buying space] and create a brand feeling towards our company”.
Customers want to be heard. With an auto-responder, you can make sure that they have a great customer experience. It becomes easy to understand how Sean’s brand association is amplified that much more – using on-brand and clean design, he’s seen more than just a marginal conversion rate increase.
Although auto-responders might be seen only as a way of communicating to your customer that you’ll get back to them in no time from the business’s point of view, they can make the difference between a good customer experience or a poor one.