The Ultimate Guide to Online Concierge Services: What They Are and How They Benefit You
April 27, 2023

The Ultimate Guide to Online Concierge Services: What They Are and How They Benefit You

A few years ago, the only people who would've had access to a concierge service were wealthy. The term “Concierge” was reserved for an exclusive level of service only offered to those who could afford private travel to the finest hotels, exclusive shopping, restaurants, and destinations across the world. However, with the advent of modern technology, concierge services are now available to virtually anyone looking for a unique, curated, and personalized experience.

What Is An Online Concierge?

Online Concierge Services use a combination of automation and expert human curators to provide personalized recommendations for shopping, dining, entertainment, vacations and even travel experiences. These services leverage data from millions of interactions to ensure a customer experience that's second to none.

One example of an online concierge service that you're probably familiar with is American Express Concierge. AMEX "Platinum" (and above) Members can use their membership to access exclusive lounges, offers, discounts, and events. They can also request personalized services like restaurant reservations and even theater tickets.

An online concierge platform that you may not be familiar with yet, is Humankind. Humankind is a virtual concierge technology that offers online stores the ability to create truly personalized shopper experiences for their customers. For shoppers, Humankind is as straightforward and simple as texting a good friend from spin class who just purchased an amazing outfit ideal for low-impact exercise, and getting a link to the item they purchased and personalized recommendations to help you through the shopping experience in reply.

What Does An Online Concierge Service Do?

The benefits of using an online concierge service are considerable. First and foremost, they save time by quickly providing customers with tailored recommendations that are suited to their own unique needs, tastes, and budgets. Secondly, they provide access to exclusive offers, discounts, and deals that customers may have missed if they didn't utilize the online concierge. Last but not least, they provide a level of service that can't be found elsewhere.

Ultimately, online concierge services offer customers convenience, time savings, and personalization - three ingredients for success in today's ever-changing world. Online concierge services offer a modern take on the traditional concierge experience. From finding the perfect restaurant for a date night to booking a dream vacation, the possibilities are virtually endless.

The Benefits of Online Concierge Software

So we're all on the same page, I'm going to make the assumption that you're here researching virtual and online concierge services to provide excellent customer experiences for your online stores. If you're not, you're welcome to read this part - but this section is specifically for those who are wanting to learn more about how an online concierge service can help them create incredible customer loyalty... which is benefit #1.

Over the last several years and primarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been feeling increasingly isolated. Spending and consumer debt are currently at an all-time high, but people are feeling like their hard-earned money should be spent on brands that deliver a unique customer experience. In a PwC study, 82% of consumers said they wanted their shopping experiences to be far more personalized and offer more human interaction- and an online concierge service like Humankind's conversational commerce software can help you do just that.

7 Ways Online Concierge Services Help You Create a Better Customer Experience.

1. Create An Unforgettable Shopping Experience - Customers want to feel like they're getting a unique, personalized shopping experience when they visit your store. An online concierge service can help you curate the perfect shopping experience that meets all of their needs, wants, and desires without them having to do any research themselves. The virtual concierge can drop items directly into the shopper's cart based on their conversation with the consumer, which can be purchased with 1 click!

2. Provide Fast, Effective Solutions To Customer Problems - Nobody likes having a problem with an item or purchase they made from you and having to wait days for support to get back to them. An online concierge service offers real-time human help and recommendations through the shopping experience.

3. Real Human Help - An online concierge service allows you to provide customers with the fast, friendly customer service they crave while also providing an extra layer of security that bots and artificial intelligence can't.

4. Reduce Cart Abandonment and Checkout Friction - Reduce customer checkout friction and cart abandonment since the products were hand-selected to meet the customer's needs which also...

5. Boost Your Bottom Line - By providing an exceptional customer experience, you can increase sales, add value to your products and services, and help build your business reputation in the long run.

6. Increase Loyalty - When customers have an excellent experience with your store, they're more likely to come back and shop again in the future. An online concierge service can do just that by providing personalized recommendations, exclusive offers, and fast customer support.

7. Stay Ahead Of The Competition - Businesses that offer more personalized experiences for their customers are much more likely to stay ahead of the competition because customers prefer a tailored shopping experience to

These are all ways an online concierge service can help online retailers create unforgettable customer experiences that are personalized and tailored to the individual shopper - Providing fast and accurate solutions to customer problems, reducing cart abandonment, increasing customer loyalty, boosting your bottom line, and helps you stay ahead of the competition. All in all, an online concierge service is a great way to build better relationships with your customers that stand the test of time.

Online Concierge Services for High Consideration Products and Services

As the costs to advertise products and services online have increased and tools like Shopify have democratized online shopping, the need for customized solutions that address high-consideration products and services has increased substantially.

A high-consideration product is a product or service that requires more research and thought before purchasing.

One of the first use cases for online concierge services is Outdoor, Fitness, and Hobby Items. Companies like Gathr Outdoors offer products for Overlanding, adventuring, and camping and offer online concierge services to help customers make the right purchase by providing access to product reviews, customized product recommendations, and shopping tips when someone visits their website.

Another example of a high-consideration product category is the things we put on our skin. I'm specifically referring to skincare, cosmetics, shampoos, and other cleansing products that could cause irritation, redness, or breakouts if they have ingredients that we're allergic to. Access to an online concierge can instantly alleviate a customer's worries with product suggestions tailored to their skin type, allergies, and desired results - providing the perfect resolution to any beauty dilemma.

One of our customers, Taylormade Golf, offers online concierge services to help customers find the right clubs, golf ball recommendations, golfing apparel and more. By providing shoppers with access to a product expert who can share product reviews, make custom product recommendations, and give shopping tips, Taylormade has been able to differentiate itself from other online retailers by offering a unique customer experience that people are willing to pay for.

There are many more examples of high-consideration, customized, or even luxury goods that would benefit from utilizing a trained expert to make product recommendations and guide customers through their shopping experience. Think of someone buying a luxury handbag as a gift for their partner - They've probably heard specific details about the product like the pattern, brand, or name, but don't know exactly where to find it or what other options they have. Or, a marathoner purchasing running shoes that need to fit certain event rules.

No matter what product you sell or service you offer, if it requires more consideration than the average purchase, an online concierge service like Humankind will provide a great way to help customers make informed decisions and keep them engaged with your brand.

So if you're looking to differentiate your online experience from your competitors and offer customers an unforgettable shopping experience that goes beyond the products you sell, consider adding a human element to your customer service strategy with Humankind's conversational commerce platform.

How to choose an Online Concierge Service

When choosing an online concierge service, it's essential to consider the customer experience and value you want to provide your shoppers. Here are a few things to consider when selecting an online concierge provider:

1. Quality of Service - It's vital that your chosen provider offers helpful, knowledgeable, and friendly customer service agents who are product experts that can provide a great customer experience. These can be internal or external to your organization, but they must deliver an excellent customer experience or shoppers won't return to your store.

Additionally, if the online concierge platform provider doesn't staff the experts, then make sure that the provider offers appropriate and ongoing training to your team of in-house experts - this is a crucial step in ensuring an excellent customer experience.

2. Customized Solutions - Your online concierge should be able to give shoppers tailored product recommendations and advice based on their individual needs, preferences, and budget. They should also be able to answer any questions they have or provide additional information they may need in order to make an informed buying decision.

3. Availability - Make sure your chosen provider can offer coverage when you need it most, with options to scale up or down as needed.

4. Technology - Find out if the online concierge software you're considering will integrate into your existing systems. This is one of the primary benefits of Humankind - we integrate with Shopify, Salesforce, Magento (now Adobe Commerce), Big Commerce, and others to help you create a seamless ecosystem to serve your customers.

5. Cost - Look for an online concierge provider that fits within your budget while still delivering the quality of service you expect.

6. Results - Ask how the provider will measure and report on the results of their services. This will help you see the impact of their work and make sure it's worth the cost. Wait times, CVRs, AOVs, LTVs, CSAT, CX, and Repeat Purchase Rates are all vital metrics to consider as you're making your choice.

By considering all these factors when selecting an online concierge service, you'll be able to provide a great customer experience with maximum ROI.

Humankind’s Conversational Commerce Software is here to help make your choice as easy as possible by offering quality, customizable solutions that can scale up or down as needed and integrate into existing systems. We believe in better experiences, happier customers, and incredible outcomes. Our platform was built to bring humanity back into commerce through 1:1 text-based relationships between shoppers and experts.

Book your demo, and let us demonstrate how we can help you delight your customers.

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