The importance of the post-purchase experience

The importance of the post-purchase experience
Published on: Jun 2, 2017
Updated: Aug 18, 2022

"Moment of Truth" Concept

In 2005, A.G. Lafley, then CEO at Procter & Gamble, introduced his version of the "Moment of Truth" marketing concept. The aim of the concept was to strengthen brand loyalty and make retailers aware of two critical moments in the purchasing process: First, the moment of decision for or against the purchase, and second, the moment when the customer uses the product for the first time.
Since then, the purchasing process has expanded and new critical moments have been added - such as the search for the product. Google addresses the question of how to influence buying behavior as early as the product search stage in its "Zero Moment of Truth" model. Also, a majority of e-commerce transactions are now completed via mobile devices. This constant availability also influences shopping behavior.

Image Mobile purchases change the customer journey

The Extended Shopping Process


Many retailers continue to focus on a limited area when it comes to the customer experience, giving away valuable customer touchpoints. Even though there are the additions of First, Second and Third Moment of Truth, too often a tagline is neglected, but one that offers enormous potential: After the sale is before the sale. After the purchase, retailers have the opportunity to build a deeper relationship with their customer. Nevertheless, today there continues to be an "experience gap" in the time after the purchase is made until the goods are received. However, it is precisely this gap that contains the new "moment of truth" for online retailers.

The "Post-Purchase Experience"


The customer places an order, so the merchant has achieved their goal and can sit back, right? Wrong. The emotional moment of shipping - the moment when the customer is excited about the product and can't get it fast enough - offers significant opportunities for store owners. Despite this, only 16% of companies actively pursue customer retention, even though the cost of acquiring new customers is five times higher than that of retaining existing customers. However, the realization that customers want a seamless shopping experience, regardless of off- or online purchases, has hit home with most retailers. A consistent experience is of glaring importance in this regard. But to generate this, online shopping cannot end with the ordering process - after all, the customer has not yet received his product here. Customers want to be looked after throughout the entire process, and preferably in a personalized way. So the "post purchase experience" is what online retailers should focus on. These four steps will help:

In 4 steps to the ideal shopping experience


1) Maintain communication:

A simple but effective measure to create a fully realized shopping experience: Handle communication after the purchase itself, rather than leaving it to the logistics provider. Shipping communication tailored to the customer creates transparency about the delivery process. This leads to better informed customers and fewer inquiries in customer service. In addition, the newly acquired contact points can be excellently used for marketing activities, as customers are now particularly receptive.

2) Relevant and personal information:

A customer waiting for his order is particularly receptive to the store owner's communication. Especially if the content is customized to him. For example, 73% of customers prefer to shop where their shopping experience is made more engaging through personalized communications.

Image Personalized shipping messages as part of the customer journey

3) Turning bad customer experiences into outstanding ones:

The potential for failure and frustration during the shipping process is high: the customer receives an incorrect or damaged product, or the delivery does not occur on the specified date. Although the retailer has no direct influence on these incidents, the customer's anger is usually directed at the store. Retailers should therefore react quickly and prevent frustration by taking the initiative and informing their customers about relevant incidents in good time - for example in the form of proactive shipping communication.

4) Create an organization that supports a great "post purchase experience"


As in most cases, when it comes to delivering the perfect customer experience, it's essential that a company's various departments work together. Close interaction between supply chain, shipping and marketing is important and enables the best use of resources, budgets and data.


Retailers need to create a complete customer experience that doesn't end with the completion of the purchase, but also includes a thoughtful "post-purchase experience." Implemented correctly, customers value the interaction with the merchant and feel connected to the store - and become loyal repeat customers. For more ideas on how to improve your post-purchase experience, click here.

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Create new reasons for people to love your brand. Build standout post-sales experiences tailored to your customers. Deliver personalized touch points that grab attention and spark loyalty.

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