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Have you, for once, imagined what your customers’ overall perception of your brand or business is? What constitutes a good customer experience for them?
Customer experience (CX) is, according to experts, the game-changer in today’s business landscape. It’s what will differentiate one business from another and puts it ahead in the industry.
CX constitutes every aspect of your business from social media, website, how you respond to tickets, discussions with customers have with your staff, to how and when your customers receive products and services they’ve ordered.
Brands, today, are differentiated based on customer experience as opposed to the traditional price and products. Businesses are investing millions of dollars in developing strategies that will put them ahead of everyone else in delivering rewarding customer experience.
Customer experience must also not be confused with customer service. Although good customer service yields better relationships, customer service only but a part of customer experience.
Another notable point is that CX is unique to each business. There’s no registered standard practice that must be followed to deliver a good CX but some elements are common across businesses.
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We look at some of the key elements that should help you deliver a good customer experience and ensure you remain in business.
Consider the following elements for a rewarding customer experience score.
You need to interrogate yourself and your processes to understand whether your response times are exactly as your customers expect, whether you are meeting your customer’s needs and getting their questions and issues resolved promptly, and whether they prefer more automation to human interactions or vice versa. It is possible your answers may be affirmative making you believe you are doing great. But, would they give the same feedback?
Only collecting factual feedback would help you understand their real feelings.
If you are keen to listen to your customers and implement systems that will help you analyze and prepare a strategy to implement their feedback regularly, then you can be sure of a good CX score.
Feedback can be collected in various ways including online surveys, sending out text messages and social media polls. The most effective way of collecting feedback will depend on your business type.
Nonetheless, get feedback and act on it.
Because of the ready availability of information today, there’s very little that your customers don’t know, both locally and globally. They are probably aware of all the trends in the industry and in society. That’s a scary fact for you who is still sticking to the old methods of doing things.
In this century, it doesn’t matter how good your product or service is or even how good your delivery is. If you are not keeping up with trends in the industry and not changing preferences as they are shaping up, you are left for doom. Your competitors who are already implementing such changes in preferences and habits will win the competition and render you irrelevant.
Sticking to the old tricks means you are lacking an understanding of your customers and their needs or you simply don’t care anymore. Consequently, even the most loyal customers will be tempted to look elsewhere and they may not resist what they are offered.
Look, if you’ve ever received an email yourself and sent it straight to the delete folder, then it’s probably what’s happening with your communications with your customers if you don’t put some thought into it before sending.
Incorrect messaging or reckless emails don’t add any value to your customers and only agitate them more. If you are sending emails to past customers who made purchases from you and the emails are poorly done, they’ll end up blocking you or even marking them as spam.
But, if you put some thought into it and analyze, for example, their buying habits and recommend to them some related products for future needs, they are likely to keep subscribing to your newsletter and ultimately buying more. It’s even better if you can predict what their needs will be soon before they are even aware of it.
This is one good practice in ensuring your business has a good customer experience score.
The secret is, invest time in preparing all communication that lands on your customers’ tables.
Keep in mind, customer experience is not a one-off activity that you will examine, implement and forget. The same way your business’ needs changes over time, so do your CX. If you fail to continuously examine your CX and improve on it, then you are definitely going to frustrate and annoy your customers which, in turn, will lead to loss of business and profits. And you don’t want that. So, work on it every now and again, analyzing trends and changes in preference and habits.
Are you aware of who your customers are? What about what they want? It’s one thing to think your customers would want a T-shirt during Christmas and another to be able to know exactly when they’ll start thinking about getting one.
Your knowledge of the ‘when’ and ‘why’ as the foundations to their purchasing decisions allows you to deliver information exactly when they are looking for it, thus increasing the chances of them engaging with you. It also allows you to personalize your interactions with your customers and even get to know them better.
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If you don’t put effort to get to know your customer’s preferences, what they want and when they want it, you are likely not to meet their needs and, sadly, not meet their expectations.
There are no two ways about it today. Customer expectations are so high thanks to the advancements in technology. Your customers are expecting your messaging to be consistent with your philosophies and values, and at the same time, reflect societal trends.
This is so critical and evident in industries that rely heavily on customer satisfaction such as hospitality, financial services, retail, and manufacturing. If you want to build a strong connection with your customers and create real, measurable brand loyalty, then make sure you have built consistency in your messaging.
From the foregoing, customer experience cannot be emphasized enough. To add to the above list, it’s also critical to know when to use which channels to deliver different messages. Half of customer interactions today are happening digitally (online) which makes email, website, in-app ads, social media, etc. very key in delivering your messages. Know when to use each channel and when not use your digital tools and instead use self-service. In all you do while delivering messages, knowing which method delivers more impact and suits your customers is a win.
Furthermore, it’s also crucial to make customer experience a company-wide commitment. CX interactions happen at every point a customer connects with your business. This means all departments and processes must commit to delivering the best CX.
If everyone or processes in the company aims at delivering the best possible CX, the overall effect will be beneficial to your CX ratings.
Today, it’s suicidal to ignore customer experience. It doesn’t matter what industry you are in, or product/service you are offering, good customer experience means it all. Have it and you are guaranteed of winning the brand loyalty that businesses are craving for. Kill it and be ready to pack.
Talk to Plumlogix.com if you need guidance and help in implementing strategies that will ensure your customer experience remains on the positive side of the scale.