Customers love online shopping. When it comes to waiting for their order, not so much. 

From the moment they hit the “buy” button, 96%[1] of customers track their package online, while 43%[1] check their delivery status daily, anxiously waiting to receive their order. 

That’s when they start reaching out with WISMO requests. The e-commerce acronym WISMO, which stands for “Where Is My Order?” is one of the most common requests from customers that make an online purchase. 

While WISMO inquiries are inevitable for any retailer, they’ve reached an all-time high in the past few years. With the rise of online shopping and Amazon’s same-day delivery service raising the bar for shipping standards, customer expectations have understandably shifted.  

A high number of WISMO requests affects your customer satisfaction and burdens your customer support team. Let’s learn more about WISMO, how it affects your business, and how to efficiently manage it. 

What is WISMO and why does it happen? 

WISMO is one of the most common customer service questions you’ll get. 

Customer patience is at an all time low, and retailers are now increasingly being flooded with  “WISMO?” or another version of this question. Here are a few examples:

From shipping issues to order delays, there are a lot of obstacles that could come up between the “buy” and “delivered” stage. At the same time, customers have high expectations regarding the post-purchase delivery experience and want to be kept in the loop at all times.  

Customers use a variety of channels to reach out and seek support. Your customer service team may receive WISMO requests via email, calls, or messaging apps. Most customers today prefer using messaging channels like WhatsApp, SMS, or Facebook Messenger to get in touch with you. 

When they do, it’s crucial that you make it easy for them to reach your customer support team and resolve their concerns at the first point of contact. 

Think of WISMO as a benchmark for your delivery experience. For example, a continuously high number of WISMO requests signals that your post-purchase experience needs some improvement.

Why are WISMO requests on the rise? 

Research shows that 93%[2]  of customers want to stay informed throughout the delivery process. While the customer tendency to follow up on orders is not new, the sheer volume of WISMO requests has increased recently - and there are a couple of reasons, both in your control and not, that might be causing this.

Between 2019 and 2020, there was a 37%[3] increase in the number of parcels shipped within the US. Pair this shipping boom with post-pandemic delays and supply chain issues, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for disaster. Delivery issues like these lead to a higher volume of WISMO requests. 

Shipping disruptions are also common during the holiday season. As the number of shipments skyrockets, parcels face significant delays, which leads to upset customers. If not addressed properly, these disruptions can quickly turn your customer’s experience sour.

How do WISMO requests affect your business? 

If you’ve noticed an increasing number of WISMO requests, it’s in your best interest to manage and reduce them. WISMO can be costly — a high volume of customer inquiries uses up a lot of your support team’s time and resources. Reducing these requests frees up their time while they focus on more complex customer issues. 

Besides the financial cost associated with WISMO, there’s an even bigger problem: your customer’s experience. Modern customers can be unforgiving when your after-sales service is poor. 

A mishandled delivery or failure to efficiently resolve a WISMO inquiry leaves customers feeling frustrated. Before you know it, they have one foot out the door, already looking to competitors. 

Our research shows that 56%[4] of consumers have stopped doing business with a brand because of one bad customer service experience. Dissatisfied customers can quickly shift their loyalty and may not return for a repeat purchase. Losing regular customers means you’ll have to attract new customers, which is a lot more costly. 

Some customers might even air out their grievances on social media, write negative reviews, or tell their friends and family about their poor experiences. These complaints can lower your business’ perceived credibility and dissuade others from using your services. 

4 practical solutions to manage and reduce WISMO queries 

The good news is that there are ways to reduce your WISMO requests and delight customers with an exemplary after-sales experience. 

1. Set clear expectations from the start 

Prevent unnecessary WISMO calls by providing customers with an estimated date they can expect their package to arrive. 

For example, let your customers know their order will take three to five working days and avoid overpromising a faster shipping time unless you can commit to it. If you’re inundated with online holiday orders and anticipate delays, give them a heads up. 

Without clear communication from the beginning, customers won’t know when to expect their order to arrive. When this happens, they’ll get understandably antsy and contact you asking — you guessed it — WISMO. Setting clear expectations from the start eases customers’ anxiety and reduces the number of delivery-related inquiries. 

 

2. Offer fast and convenient support through chat and messaging apps 

When customers reach out with questions about their order, they expect instant support on the channel that they reached out on - not to be passed on to other channels or agents. However, it can be extremely resource-intensive to be available all the time, across all channels. So you need to find what works for your business and your customers. 

Customers today prefer communicating with businesses on digital channels like messaging apps or in-app and website chat that offer conversational and real-time communication. So engaging with customers on these channels can help you answer questions and resolve delivery issues quickly.

If you find a spike in repetitive WISMO requests, you can also deploy AI-powered chatbots to give instant updates or automatically transfer them to a customer support agent if needed. 

Freshchat has helped thousands of businesses provide a seamless customer service experience, including the all-in-one 24/7 delivery platform, Dunzo. With impressive delivery turnaround times of 24 to 45 minutes, Dunzo wanted to bring that same speedy response time to order-related customer inquiries. 

Using Freshcat’s AI-powered bot, Dunzo was able to resolve 48% of requests without human interaction, helping them save 30% in support costs and reducing response time from 4 minutes to 46 seconds.  

By enabling their team to efficiently address order-related requests at any time, Freshchat helped Dunzo boost their team performance and deliver a high standard of customer service.  

 

3. Real-time order tracking 

Today’s customers expect to have access to a tracking page where they can follow their order’s progress. 

Give them access to a tracking page that’s easy to access and navigate and enables them to keep track of their package from the moment it leaves the warehouse until it’s at their doorstep. 

Bonus points if you make it accessible across different devices like mobile. 

 

4. Proactively engage customers with delivery updates 

Messaging channels now allow customers to opt-in for delivery notifications when their parcel is dispatched. 

Automated updates ease a customer’s nerves throughout the delivery process, creating a better post-purchase experience. Simple notifications like “order sent” or “on its way” keep customers in the loop and reduce the number of WISMO inquiries. 

Freshchat enables you to send delivery notifications with ease on messaging channels such as WhatsApp. 

Customers who opt-in for notifications receive order, payment, and delivery updates directly on WhatsApp. Freshchat’s WhatsApp Business Integration also allows you to monitor your team’s performance and metrics. 

Conquer WISMO overload with a seamless delivery journey 

 

A high volume of WISMO inquiries is a symptom of a post-purchase experience that needs your attention. Managing and ultimately reducing the volume of package whereabouts requests will strengthen your customer experience and brand loyalty. 

To do so, your customer support team needs to meet customer expectations and provide a quick and effortless delivery experience. 

Modern messaging software, like Freshchat, helps your team deliver on those expectations and overcome the challenges that come with an increasing number of customer support requests. 

 

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