What is WISMO? And How Can Businesses Avoid it?

‘Where’s my order?’  is easily the most common inquiry shoppers make of retailers’ customer service teams. According to one source, these types of queries make up around 50% of customer calls to support teams which is impacting not only your employees but your bottom line too.

If your business regularly ships products to customers, ‘where is my order’ queries are more than likely impacting your bottom line — in a huge way. 

In this article, we’ll explain how these queries impact profit margins — from requiring more support from customer support teams to poor customer experience. We’ll then highlight how businesses can reduce WISMO requests using Route.

What is WISMO?

WISMO is an acronym for ‘where is my order?’ and it is typically used as an umbrella term for inbound customer calls. These calls can be received across a number of channels, including:

With more than 2.14 billion people online shopping in 2021, it’s not surprising that questions regarding order status are one of the most asked shopper questions. In fact, Via found that 78% of shoppers expect to receive delivery updates. Brands that don’t provide these updates are most likely losing customers to retailers who do provide them.

Why WISMO is Increasingly Important for ecommerce Businesses

Ecommerce giants like Amazon have forever shifted customer expectations about shipping. With the company offering same-day or next-day delivery options, 88% of surveyed customers stated they expect faster delivery and shipping from other online retailers as well. 

So what happens to retailers who can’t offer speedy delivery? The short answer is they’re losing customers to stores that do provide at least 3-day delivery. According to one survey, 40% of customers reported they would not shop at stores with more than a 3-day delivery process. 

Understandably, customers tend to get anxious when there’s limited visibility into when they can expect their orders to arrive. This anxiety is only heightened when stores fail to provide tracking updates, or previous customers report lengthy shipping delays. That type of post-purchase experience is not something today’s consumers expect of retailers, and it can be incredibly costly to online stores.

How WISMO Can Affect Your Bottom Line

WISMO calls are the worst. They waste valuable time and resources that are ultimately costing your business thousands, if not millions, of dollars every year. 

Here’s how WISMO costs your business money:

Increases Customer Support Costs

Let’s do some math.

If WISMO queries are making up half of your customer support calls and you receive 1,000 calls per week, that’s 500 calls where employees are answering questions regarding where a package is. According to a survey by Gorgias, customer service agents spend an average of 10 minutes answering WISMO questions. An additional study found that every customer service interaction costs (on average) $6. So if your agents are spending 160 hours every week answering 500 WISMO calls, that’s about $3,000 per week — more than $100,000 per year!

That’s a lot of money that could be spent on things that actually improve your business and, ultimately, decrease the amount of WISMO calls you’re getting.

Loss of Future Business from Dissatisfied Customers

You’ve likely heard the old adage that it’s five times more expensive to sign a new customer than it is to retain an existing one. And it’s true. One source found that the probability of successfully selling to a new customer is only 5-20%. The probability of successfully selling to an existing customer? 60-70%. 

Too many businesses are focusing on attracting new customers rather than attempting to retain their existing customers. And it’s costing them a lot of money. Forbes found that US companies lose $136.8 billion every year due to avoidable consumer switching.

Remember, today’s consumers are all about the experience brands provide. And WISMO queries are a clear sign that your post-purchase experience is not working which likely means you’re losing customers to competitors who do have one.

5 Ways to Reduce WISMO and Increase Customer Satisfaction

While you may be tempted to spend more time and resources getting customers to actually make a purchase, it’s crucial you spend just as much time (if not more) on delivery. Your delivery process can make or break your relationships with customers, so it’s crucial to make it as seamless as possible.

Remember, today’s consumers expect retailers to provide them with clear updates as to where their order is. Providing that kind of transparency is the first step in reducing the number of WISMO questions flooding your support center, allowing you to save time, money, and resources. 

Below are just five ways you can reduce WISMO calls while simultaneously improving your post-purchase experience.

1. Real-Time Order Tracking

Real-time tracking information is the fastest way to answer WISMO questions. The moment someone places an order with your store, provide them with a link to self-service software like Route, where they can track their package — all the way from checkout to delivery.

With real-time tracking information, you drastically reduce the number of WISMO support tickets. Route, for example, has been shown to reduce WISMO tickets by nearly 75%. This allows your team to focus way less on answering package questions and more on building customer relationships.

2. Multi-Channel Customer Notifications

Your customers are interacting with your brand on a number of channels–from their laptops to their smartphones. This means you need to provide shipping updates across all those channels as well.

Sending an email with a tracking link is great–but go a step further. Have a shipping FAQ page on your website. Allow customers to ask shipping questions on your social media pages. Provide shipping support on your live chat. These methods ensure customers get fast answers to delivery questions and decrease the number of WISMO calls hitting your support center.

3. Offer Package Protection

Remember, consumers just want to be in the know about where their order is — especially if it’s been lost, delayed, or worse–stolen. Offering package protection alongside real-time tracking provides customers with peace of mind knowing they’ll be taken care of should something happen to their order. 

If something does happen during the shipping process, immediately reach out to your customer and assure them you’ll take care of it either by offering a full refund or a new product free of charge.

4. Improve Your Post-Purchase Experience

Ultimately, reducing WISMO calls comes down to a proactive approach to improving your post-purchase experience. You can do this by:

Each of these tactics ensures customers have full transparency into where their package is and easy access to support should they need it.

5. Address WISMO Concerns Ahead of Time

The best way to avoid WISMO questions? Prevent them from happening in the first place! Even before shoppers checkout, include a delivery estimate. Once they’ve placed their order, provide real-time shipping updates across multiple channels. 

These tactics answer the question of ‘where is my order’ before it’s even asked. Plus, it allows your support teams to focus on more important tasks and provides customers with the modern ecommerce shipping strategies they’ve come to expect.

Get Rid of WISMO with Route

Reducing the number of WISMO calls starts with improving your post-purchase experience. And the best way to add clarity and trust to your after-checkout experience is with Route.

Route provides merchants with the tools needed to solve problems that lead to spikes in WISMO calls, including:

With Route, your customers enjoy total transparency and reassurance around delivery timelines and package status, reducing their reliance on your support team and thereby reducing WISMO calls. 

Contact Route for a free demo and learn more.


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