The first step to better customer service is surprisingly simple – businesses need to consider how to improve the experience from the customer viewpoint.
Therefore, customer feedback is essential to improving experiences. Through the careful analysis of customer data and surveys, businesses can introduce changes that enhance their customer experience strategy. Furthermore, this approach is pivotal to customer retention; research continues to enforce that it is more profitable to retain a customer than acquire a new one. Therefore, customer experience is critical to gaining a competitive edge. Companies need to ask themselves how they can keep their customers engaged, anticipate their needs, and meet their expectations.
By assessing interactions with clients and considering the experience from the customer viewpoint, companies can begin to better understand the stages of the sales cycle and the touchpoints that impact conversion. From here, businesses can understand the aspects of the customer journey that may impede successful sales. With this information, customers can better access what they need; for businesses, they can streamline processes and improve customer service, driving efficiency in both sales and operations. In essence, it is about offering unmatched value; when trying to gain a clear view of what motivates consumers, it is crucial to assess these criteria from the customer viewpoint. In this article, we discuss how to approach this task in four steps.
1. Businesses need to show customers they do care
Making sure clients receive the best possible service is at the core of any customer experience strategy. However, it is important that the customer experiences encompasses all the interaction before, during, and after a purchase. Therefore, businesses need to ensure they maintain the same standard of service throughout the sales cycle. For example, research has found that 47% of customers would defect to a competitor within 24 hours of a poor customer service experience.
Therefore, businesses need to allocate sufficient resources to customer service, as it is essential to customer retention. Giving proper attention to the most valuable clients enable companies to push up margins whilst nurturing loyalty. For example, businesses need to maintain communication with valuable segments. This means initiating contact, being responsive, and timely. Social media is an important route to maintaining this contact. Customers are already interacting with each other on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, so customer service teams should be ready and available to answer their queries and make announcements.
2. Nurture relationships with personalization
Personalizing interactions gives businesses the opportunity to nurture consumer confidence. Furthermore, excellent customer service will differentiate a company from its competitors; after all, relationships begin with conversion and collaboration. Product development professionals innovate better when they are inspired by the customer viewpoint. By partnering with clients, they can identify new opportunities that drive acquisition and retention.
To reiterate the point above: customers want to feel that companies care. As such, generic communications will never work. Businesses need to make their customers feel as if they’re going to extra mile. Therefore, they need to generate personalized content to encourage them to interact with the brand. Whether it is email, social media, or website design, companies need to proactively attract clients. For instance, marketing executives should target key customer segments through behavioral data, purchase history, and browsing history.
3. Reward return customers
It is common knowledge that loyal customers are more engaged in a company. As a result, these loyal customers are important advocates for a business’s mission and values. This theory is proven by research; according to a recent study, 73% of loyalty program members are likely to recommend a brand that offers attractive benefits. Consequently, these incentives translate into profit for the company. After all, customer lifetime value is one of the most important metrics a business should follow.
Therefore, company loyalty programs need to be creative. To attract clients with the highest lifetime value, they have to go beyond discounts. Businesses need to offer real benefits; for instance, loyalty program members should receive some kind of reward or exclusive content. This is an extremely effective way of enhancing brand affinity. Rewards must be desirable, personal, and high-quality. For example, program members might receive invitations to exclusive events, special pricing on packages, or early access to sales.
4. Improve self-service customer support solutions
For many consumers, their first step when seeking support will be self-service solutions. By optimizing self-service resources, companies can improve customer service at these all-important initial touchpoints. For instance, artificially intelligent customer service solutions and effective, well-research FAQ sections are critical to meeting customer expectations head-on. Furthermore, these solutions reduce the cost of providing customer support. To improve these resources businesses should:
- Invite users who have read more than two self-support articles in a single session with an invitation to share feedback.
- Ask these customers to rate their satisfaction with your self-support content. With this information, companies can find out specific ways to improve their offer.
- Add this improved self-support content in response to their feedback and to meet their responses as needed.
The key to understanding the customer viewpoint – know who they are
In summary, businesses can find answers about how to improve service from the customer viewpoint by enhancing their understanding of who their customers are. With robust customer profiles, businesses can access what their clients want, what motivates them, and how to meet their requirements. However, this strategy is easier said than done; to access this information, companies need to implement advanced data capture and analysis initiatives.
Despite the challenges, learning how customers feel – and how well they believe a business responds to these feelings – is a critical step in improving customer experiences. Once a business can answer these questions, they can assess the effectiveness of their customer service offer. More often than not, enhancing customer service does not require inventing the wheel; sometimes, all it takes is examining the experience the company already delivers. From here, a company can assess how they can make this experience more in line with the customer’s expectations and needs.