How to Surprise and Delight Customers to Earn Their Loyalty

Gladly Team

Read Time

4 minute read

As ecommerce becomes more crowded and competitive, brands need to do everything in their power to earn each customer’s long-term business. The best way to make shoppers feel like your brand is worth their recurring time and money is to surprise and delight customers in ways that make them feel special.

It’s one thing to meet customer expectations, but it’s another to go further to surprise and delight them. In order to truly exceed the status quo, brands need to learn as much about their customers’ needs, wants, and behaviors as possible to understand what truly gets them excited.

Let’s take a look at the data you’ll need to uncover, how you can use this information, and how “surprise and delight” customer service is the key to building brand longevity.

How to Surprise and Delight Customers

Brands can surprise and delight customers through acts of generosity and appreciation, and by incorporating these elements throughout shoppers’ unique experiences.

Collecting information can be done in several ways:

  • Conducting customer satisfaction surveys pre- or post-purchase that ask customers for some personal information like birthdays, special occasions, product preferences, or how much they enjoy your experience.
  • Tracking customer behavior and interactions on your site, content, mobile app, or media (with explicit permission from the shopper, of course).
  • Recording customer interactions with customer service across channels in a single, accessible hub.

However you choose to collect the data, make sure you have a platform that can accurately track and manage this information to make it accessible and actionable for your support staff.

Surprise and Delight Ideas for Customers

Once you’ve gathered this information, the fun part begins. Here are four ways brands can lean on the data they’ve gathered to surprise and delight customers.

1. Anticipating personal wants and needs

When connecting with customers about your products, don’t just try to close a sale. Instead, consider the reasons why they’re shopping in the first place, and what problems they’re trying to solve with this purchase. For instance, Instead of just saying: “This product is the best at what it does because of XYZ features,” try saying: “This product is the ideal solution for that XYZ problem you’ve been having.”

Breeze Airways used Gladly to deliver on their tagline, “Seriously Nice,” by elevating the support experience to ensure all agent interactions would leave customers satisfied and smiling. The interconnected omnichannel use of a conversation system made response times fast and accessible, ensuring that during the stressful process of airline booking, Breeze was always present and ready to help.

2. Recommending products or services they’d love

Cross-selling and upselling products are obviously great ways for your support center to generate additional revenue streams. But more importantly, these acts deepen bonds with customers by showing them you’re knowledgeable about their tastes in ways only really caring brands are. In our Customer Expectations Report, 66% of consumers said they prefer brands that know them and can recommend things they would like.

By knowing more about your customers and having that information on hand, your support agents can easily access historical data to recommend complementary or higher-end versions of the products they already love. This is where a platform like Gladly comes in handy to easily store all of your customers’ data, their interactions with your brand, and their habits and behaviors from your website.


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3. Matching them with the perfect support

Customers love feeling like they’re speaking with a true expert when they contact your support team regarding their issues.

On one hand, you should be training all of your employees to master your product catalog, and even provide an easily accessible knowledge base so that all agents can call on information whenever they need it. But to go further, explore support platforms that include People Match features, which automatically connect customers, based on their history and product needs, with the agent who has the most expertise on the matter.

4. Showing appreciation

Beyond providing personalized service touches and remembering key details about product preferences, acts of appreciation, like personalized letters or birthday gifts, are that extra step toward surprising and delighting customers that makes them feel a deeper connection to your brand.

Pet brand Chewy is famous for their acts of appreciation toward customers. Among a roster of great gestures, they sent out custom pet portraits to thousands of customers during the pandemic. Acts of generosity like this make Chewy one of the most beloved brands in the ecommerce space.

For more inspiration, take a look at our customer appreciation ideas post to see how you can offer these gestures to shoppers.

A Platform Build to Surprise and Delight Customers

With Gladly, ecommerce brands can focus on providing next-level experiences to their customers. As clothing retailer Bombas discovered, Gladly turns agents into Support Heroes and equips them with the tools they need to surprise and delight customers. As Nick Martin, director of customer happiness at Bombas, put it so well, our “inherent usability for agents” is instrumental in helping support teams provide a more “holistic approach to answering customer questions.”


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