Reaching an international audience has never been easier. However, global growth brings with it the need for careful consideration to ensure local application hits the mark.
A great example of this is giving your customers the ability to enter their address in your online checkout in a way that feels familiar to them. After all, the checkout is the main section of the online buying process which contains the most fields. When building your online address forms, the order of the fields would be different for each country you ship to. This is even before you’ve taken into account the multiple languages, character scripts and different address formats unique to each individual region.
For this situation, the aim is obvious; provide speed and flexibility for your customer, while capturing and returning accurate and reliable address data. Address verification technology can help you achieve this. Your customer, no matter where they are in the world would simply begin typing their address into a single box. Almost instantly, the tool would begin to return verified addresses, based on your customer's current location.
The top retailers in this year’s International Retail Index are adopting this technology in order to best meet the needs and expectations of their customers.
Is a house even a home, without a smart speaker? Voice is something seen to make life easier; talking to a device, instead of entering a command manually is a new and exciting shift that consumers are embracing. Couple this with the emerging trend for people shopping online, using only their voice. Suddenly smart tech has turned into smart shopping. But only smart retailers will master it.
Giving a command through voice highlights how some of the more complex topics bring about more issues. Take the example of detailing your address to a smart speaker. Now try and speak the address for each of your global customers, applying different accents and slangs, each needing to be understood and transposed.
But that’s only part of the problem. How would a customer know the address is correct when they don’t have a screen to read back what has been deciphered by the smart speaker?
Address technology, built on the foundations of verified location data enables every business to offer a seamless smart voice shopping experience to its customers.
Social media stretches far beyond a post, tweet, like or follow. Influencer marketing, distributed by social platforms has never been more prevalent. But converting, identifying and later being able to contact and market to your social fans is the ultimate driver behind the success of converting a follower into a paying customer.
Building product or brand-specific landing pages, which drive the social follower to the point of that first exchange of their details with you is crucial. The most optimal contact identification as a first point of contact is something that is tried and tested. Email.
When capturing data to make contact with your new follower, the need for speed should be high on your UX agenda. Fail-safes such as email confirmation fields, to cross-check against the first entry, are being phased out.
Technology has come a long way in solving this. Behind the scenes, email verification is now widely adopted by retailers who are looking to remove form friction., Ensuring an email is valid from a single field of entry, improves the user experience and prevents you from curating a database of ‘disposable’ inboxes and duff data.
Online delivery is the new battleground. Consumer expectations of time from order to delivery is high. Put simply, a single mistake could ruin it all and impact your bottom line.
Rarely does a retailer handle the last-mile of delivery, so typically retailers depend on logistics companies to complete this step for them. But more can be done to reduce failed delivery attempts and returned items. An accurate delivery address and billing details are fundamental in ensuring a customer's payment details match the address that they have entered at the point of ordering and that their order is delivered to the right address, first time.
To ensure the package can be processed by the courier quickly, a standardised address in the right format of the destination country is critical. In a world of automation, following address formats, in a readable format bypasses the need for human intervention, which inevitably causes a delay.
You can further enhance an address in order to future proof and easily adopt new and emerging delivery methods, such as drone delivery. With geocodes, you can optimise routes and give an exact location where the parcel should be delivered.
Best practice often stretches wider than you first may consider. Customer expectations are developing at a rapid rate as they are increasingly exposed to global brands who strive to go bigger and better than their rivals.
Leading global digital ecosystem operators (such as Amazon, Alibaba, Google and JD.com) make it easy for international retailers to enter foreign markets like the Far East. The biggest challenge that still exists is the delivery of an order, especially in countries that use foreign character sets.
Trust in technology is being widely adopted across multiple regions to supply accurate address labelling. The learnings from the Far East can help retailers be one step ahead of their competitors in their regional markets.