It is important to keep in mind that not every e-tailer needs e-commerce helpdesk software. I dislike the fact that it’s seldom (if ever) free, that it takes time for teams to set it up, and that it limits how they can work as a team. It can sometimes consume a lot of resources, and that’s unfortunate.


Some of the time, but not all of the time.


A help desk is likely to save you time, money, and a lot of headache when it comes to typing on a computer keyboard. It depends on your team’s ability to serve its customers well if it will be able to do that for you.


Do you know what e-commerce help desk software is?

In addition to becoming your customer’s point of contact, a help desk facilitates all of your customer service needs. An e-commerce company may need to gather information from a variety of sources including:


You will receive emails from your online store on a regular basis

Marketplace messages such as those from Amazon and eBay

Keeping a record of telephone calls

Live chat sessions

All your support records can end up in the same place, so you can help all your customers from one browser window.


In addition to this, help desks also come with tools to make the process of receiving support easier. It is possible, for example, to create a library of saved replies to save yourself from the frustration of retyping the same reply 20 times a day. You have never been asked to sacrifice your carpal tunnel syndromes to please your customers, have you?


Hopefully now you have a better understanding of why help desk software is important. Are you really in need of it?


You will have to learn a new system if you want to use the help desk. As a result, it requires a significant amount of time and effort which your team might not be enthusiastic about investing.


Some of the tools included may not be needed by you as well. It is not necessary that you have all of the bells and whistles included in the package.


Before investing your time and money into any project, you need to ask yourself the following five questions. Generally, the more frequently you answer yes, the more likely it is that you will benefit from an ecommerce help desk in your company.


  1. Would it be helpful if multichannel support was made easier?

What is the total number of support channels that you use? Certainly email is one of them, isn’t it? What about the eBay message system? How about Amazon’s messaging system? What about chatting? Any other services?


When you are providing multichannel support, you are dealing with more than one customer. This is a common occurrence among e-commerce businesses. In the past, the different channels have tended to be isolated from the rest of the business, as they had different interfaces, passwords, sets of tools, and message archives.


The following issues can arise as a result of separating each channel into its own silo:


Support inconsistency across different channels (which can result in 73% of your customers leaving you)

It is difficult to prioritize requests

As a result of the need for redundant systems to be created and maintained

Data collection and analysis problems with support data

Employees who serve multiple channels may require longer training times

Agents switch screens from one screen to another and back again, resulting in slow responses

With a help desk, everything is gathered into one location, eradicating all the problems mentioned above. With the help of upgrades and apps that can be added to help desks, they can support email by default and can integrate other channels. With Help Scout’s Beacon you can add live chat, while with ChannelReply you can integrate with eBay and Amazon.


  1. Can you save time on replies if you have a help desk?

It is estimated that over 40% of the emails your customers send to you are expected to be answered within six hours. Most companies, however, fall far short of meeting this requirement. In fact, the average response time has been reported to be over 12 hours according to a 2018 study by SuperOffice.


Consider the support tools you are currently using. In your opinion, are they capable of meeting the response time expectations of your customers? If not, would it be possible to utilize them more effectively?


Let’s take the example of Amazon. It allows you to save answers to common questions, such as what to say when you don’t know what to say, and then insert them with a click of the mouse, much like a help desk response. What do you think of the use of tools like these? Are you taking full advantage of them, or are you ignoring them?



It may only take you a few hours to learn and set up the tools available to you, but that small amount of time each week could be saved. If you are planning on going to the hardware store, make sure that you know what you have in the shed.


Check whether a help desk would be a worthwhile addition to what you already have by understanding what you already have. Most help desks will allow you to:


You can save replies (sometimes referred to as email templates or prepared responses) on your computer.

It is possible to set up automatic responses, reminders, and notifications

Managing conversations by assigning them to specific agents

Using tools like Workflows, you can automate management tasks that are repetitive

There aren’t many other support systems on the market that offer so many time-saving features. Help desks in addition to providing these tools across all your support channels, not just one, make these tools available to you.


Do you think these tools would make your company’s customer service easier, or do you have all the tools you need to be able to respond as fast as possible?


  1. How do you know which customer was helped by which person?

Have you ever looked at a teammate’s response and wondered, “Who wrote this?Have you ever looked at a teammate’s response and wondered, “Who wrote this?Do you ever find yourself looking at a teammate’s response and wondering “Who wrote this”, or “Who are you?”. Maybe the responder was less than professional. Maybe the author knows something that you don’t, and you’d like to pick their brain on some information. Regardless of what happened, the one thing you need to know is who sent that message, but you won’t be able to find out.


It is not uncommon for some support systems (like eBay’s) to not track who wrote which response. In some cases, agents may be able to write in a signature, but this is very time consuming and will lead to inconsistencies.


Help desks provide separate accounts allowing you to keep track of who wrote what response when, and which member of your team wrote it. Furthermore, they allow users to view all of the responses a given agent has provided. This eliminates the need for guesswork.


Help with Scout Reports

  1. Do you have a lot of support records scattered around?

When you’re trying to collect data on support, it can feel like chasing marbles down a hill. It seems that each time you pick one up, others roll further away as more requests come rolling in like bowling pins. If you have to deal with multichannel support, it gets even more frustrating as the callers bounce down side roads and skitter into the bush. It may seem like a good idea to use a spreadsheet like the one below at first, but there will be a very short period of time when it will not be able to keep up.


Messy reports

Listed below are some warning signs that your team might be chasing too many marbles:


A customer writes in regarding a previous request but the agent cannot locate it and must ask the customer to re-explain the issue

It is not uncommon for team members to ask each other for information they are not able to find themselves

There are large-scale problems that often go unnoticed for too long because it is difficult to identify patterns

It is impossible to provide a statistic to the support manager when the manager is asked for one by the manager

If you only provide support to your customers using one email address, you might have little trouble. 

There are some help desks that will put your marbles in a nice, level box so they can’t run away from you. The customer service department is all located in one place, so all your records are in one place as well.


Some help desks even give you the choice of sorting your data points based on deep search options. Whether it was an agent or a customer, they made it easy for you to find all of the messages from a particular person. A more advanced feature is the Custom Fields feature, which allows you to track details unique to your business, such as SKUs and shipment tracking IDs.


If you don’t want to lose your marbles, then do anything it takes to keep them.


  1. Do you feel that a lack of information prevents you from making important decisions?

Well, you’ve gathered your basic information, now what? Now that you have your information, what next? How do you proceed? Can you use those data to make any sense, or will you have to spend some time working with Excel and PowerPoint?


Messy reports

It is possible to gather information and crunch numbers with help desk reporting tools if you have enough time. It is possible for some of them to show details such as your busiest times and days of the week, average first reply times, and customer satisfaction rates.


Smart decisions are powered by this actionable data. If you do this, you will know when your customers are in need of your help, where there is room for improvement, and whether new strategies are working. In case you’re sick of making decisions in the dark or spending hours on spreadsheets, a help desk can … well … help you out.


For each company, the value of an e-commerce help desk will be different. As a team, you need to decide if you are going to spend money and time on this software, or are you going to use it as an effective way to communicate with your customers?