Research conducted recently indicated that 80% of suppliers believe they offer their customers the best services. Only 8% of the customers, however, indicated that their expectations were met by their suppliers. Which begs the questions, how do you ensure you excel in customer experience?
This is not just a statistic; it is a big discrepancy between the expectations in service delivery and execution. The situation is even worse when it comes to B2B customers in comparison to their B2C counterparts.
When subjected to a scale, B2B customer experiences tend to score 50% or lower, while B2C scores are on average much higher ranging from 65% to 85%.
The notion that B2B suppliers don’t think customer experience matters is an all too common belief. In reality, a large percentage of B2B manufacturers think that ranking high in customer experience ratings is important for their business.
As a matter of fact, many B2B manufacturers have taken note of the need to provide a stronger customer experience and have objectives in place to improve it, but as you probably guessed, there is often discrepancy between setting these objectives and executing on them.
When it comes to customer experience, everything from how easy or challenging it is to navigate the website, to customer service interaction, to the delivery guy who delivers the product is part of the process. It should be an all-inclusive experience and there is a lot to be gained should one manage to hack it.
Here is just a shortlist of the kinds benefits to be realized.
Having looked at reasons why you should improve your customer experience? Let us now look at strategies you can adopt to improve customer experience for your customers that will give you the competitive edge you need and enable you to get to the top of your industry.
No one plots to fail. You could come up with seemingly strong customer experience policies, but as long as employees are not customer-oriented, you are bound to fail whether you intended to or not. The best way to develop these policies is by listening to customers and determining what their needs are followed by tailoring products to those needs. This way, the focus shifts from the product to the customer’s needs.
The employees of your organization are another important facet of your customer’s journey. You need to come up with a customer-centric vision and communicate it clearly to your employees. Making sure that your employees adopt this strategy is the first step to success in turning the customer experience initiatives into action.
In this era of digital fluency, it is not possible to operate a business without establishing a presence online. Customer dissatisfaction can stem from a variety of issues, but frustration with finding information or trouble navigating your website should never be one of them.
Before you can launch any platform however, it is important to test out the customer’s digital experience using a sample model. This will save you from having to redo the entire system if the goal is not met.
To ensure you come up with a holistic system, it is a good idea to have a cross-functional team drawn from all the departments of your organization. That way you are sure to develop the most viable system tested by various perspectives.
Technology is evolving, and with this comes new channels of reaching customers. As an organization, you must keep experimenting with new channels of customer engagement.
To achieve this, is is necessary to retrain your existing workforce on new technology and keep them updated on what is evolving in the field. In areas where retraining does not cover it, you need to hire tech-savvy individuals to handle those developments.
Outsourcing is also another option at your disposal. Whatever you do, don’t lag when it comes to digital customer experience improvement, because your competition might be one step ahead of you.
Technology has allowed businesses to interact and engage with customers online. Your interaction with customers on these platforms generates data that is very useful in the revision and improvement of the business practices.
A lot of businesses are using this data to anticipate customer needs and provide products that are suitable for the market at a in real time.
Infusing this with technology like artificial intelligence and automation can help diagnose issues in the process and find timely solutions.
Many companies are also currently using mobile apps to ensure and enable their customers can conveniently access their services anywhere.
If your organization is fully committed to improving customer experience, then leaving this important task to one or a couple of people in a certain office will not work.
The task of overseeing customer experience should be allocated to a team drawn from almost all the departments of the organization, if not all of them.
Utilize the feedback loop to better continue improving and delivering the best to your customers. This way, with time, you are sure to rise above the competition.