10 Ways to win with great customer experience
Customer experience is a hugely important tool and should be at the heart of any business. There’s been a subtle shift in the way people spend over the last few years, and this looks set to continue; consumers are now spending more money on experiences over a quality of product and it is the experience of a brand or product, rather than the quality, which is building brand loyalty.
This shows us that it’s no longer good enough to merely provide a fantastic product. The internet is making it much easier for consumers to ‘shop around’, and as a result, they are becoming much savvier about where they spend their money. That’s why it’s vital you give your customers no reason to look elsewhere by making every experience they have with you a good one.
And most businesses are adapting to this trend quickly – a survey by Bloomberg Businessweek found that delivering a great customer experience has become a top strategic objective for businesses, and a recent Customer Management IQ survey found that 75% of customer management executives and leaders rated customer experience of the highest scalable importance.
Given that it’s 6-7x more expensive for companies to attract new customers than to keep existing customers*, make sure you nurture the ones you have and give them reasons to stay.
Wear the shoes of your audience
What do you want when you visit a website? What do you like to see before you make a purchase? Map out your customer experience journey and think about what makes you make a buying decision from a beginning to end process.
Think about how many times your customers have to ‘click’ to get to what they want. Try to minimise the navigation to your end goal conversion as much as you can. After all, in a time-poor world, customers are going to return to a brand that saves them time.
Make customer interaction easy
A problem solved is no longer a problem, so make sure you’re able to assist customers as quickly as possible. Consider adding an online chat function, helpline or a twitter feed to help customers who may be having issues. Doing so effectively will leave the right impression and encourage return visits to your site.
Customise your customer experience
If you notice someone is a repeat buyer, thank them. Send loyalty codes. Give them a discount on their next purchase. Reward customers for coming back to you and they will continue to do so.
Sell a lifestyle
Don’t just think about the product that you are trying to sell. Think about why people want it and why they should. What problem does it solve? Use the experience of the product to sell it, in a world powered by the need to experience.
People buy from people, not machines
In a growing world of digital communication and automated messaging, it can be advantageous to show some personality in your branding and all related copy. Do so carefully and it will resonate with your audiences and they’ll remember you.
Find out what makes them tick
What’s important to your audience? The better you know the people you sell to, the better you will become at selling to them. Use customer surveys or focus groups to ask them questions, and then create tailored customer experiences for them based on the feedback.
Fast processes aren’t always the best processes
In business, the temptation is always to get this done quickly and efficiently. However, taking the time to make sure your customers are happy will aid you in the long run. Your customers want to feel special and when this need is met their experience enhanced. For you, that means customer referrals and repeat business.
Keep your ear to the ground
When it comes to customer experience, the ‘no news is good news’ adage does not apply. Don’t assume that your customers are happy – know that they are. Not all unhappy customers will complain, and the sad fact is that 91% of unhappy customers who are non-complainers simply take their business elsewhere**, giving you no warning and no chance to make them happy.
Don’t make promises you can’t keep
Never be tempted to overpromise. Customer experience is all about dedicating yourself to your commitments and always delivering. Broken words and overselling can only lead to disappointment and a negative experience. Make realistic, thoughtful changes that won’t strain your time, your workforce or your systems. Keep it simple, keep it focussed and make it work. That’s the only way to keep your customers coming back for more.
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Looking for more ways to make your customers fall in love with you? Take a look at any of the articles below.
*Think Jar ThinkTank research organisation