Every year, $1.6 trillion is lost due to poor customer service. Customer service is the spine of customer experience, an absolutely central component to the machine. Let this slip and customer relationships wither.
If you aren’t convinced that improving customer experience is good for your bottom line, consider the fact that customer-centric companies are 60% more profitable than brands that aren’t customer-centric due to their higher customer loyalty..
When you improve customer experience, you make it much more likely that your customers will become loyal fans in the future.
Are you wondering how to make sure all of your customers are psyched about your brand? Let’s take a look at seven ways to improve the customer journey and deliver a positive experience.
1. Value Employee Ideas
Your employees who interact with customers are in a very special position. They are the first to get customer and visitor feedback regarding perceptions and mood.
It’s important to listen to the ideas of your employees and value them. When they feel valued at work, they’ll be much more engaged and much more willing to go the extra mile for customers.
When your employees provide feedback, take action. This will be a clear signifier of the fact that their voices are heard and therefore more energized to perform their customer-facing roles.
2. Empower Your Employees
If you want to give your customers the best possible experience, you’ll actually want to start with your employees. There is a major link between employees who feel empowered and customers that are happy.
To understand this, imagine yourself talking to a customer service person. You’ve been on the phone for fifteen minutes already and you ask for a discount. You’re motivated to have the phone call over with because you’ve already dedicated so much time to it.
An empowered employee would be able to grant you the discount or offer another appropriate outcome, while an employee who doesn’t feel empowered will have to put the caller on hold and go ask the manager.
As you can see, it’s important to figure out where your employees are running into empowerment issues when it comes to delivering the best possible service. You’ll also want to take a good look at your culture and make sure it is customer-centric.
Employees here, include everyone including the CEO. After all, Forbes found that 59% of companies with a CEO who is involved in customer experience report higher revenue growth, compared to just 40% of companies without a customer-focused CEO reporting growth. A leading indicator that a business is serious is the establishment of a new role delivering superior customer experience. The job title is the Chief Customer Officer (sometimes the Chief Experience Officer).
3. Personalize Customer Experience
Personalized interactions are important at all customer touchpoints. You can do this in a number of ways, including following up with a guest satisfaction survey, adapting your website to make it dynamic based on user preferences, and offering recommendations based on past purchases.
Having a personalized approach to customer experience management is a new discipline that will deliver loyal customers and a reduction in customer churn.
4. Improve Your Customer Service to Drive out the Bad Experience
Customer service is absolutely essential to having happy customers. Whether this at a location or the digital experience – your customer service is helpful and friendly might be the one deciding reason why a person chooses one company over another. This is because they need to have confidence that the support they might eventually need will be there for them.
Customers are far more likely to be loyal to a brand when they experience great customer interactions.
So how do you make your customer service better? And how to ensure customer expectations are met?
First, you’ll need to hire, train, coach, and support your customer service employees with the goal of nurturing customer service behaviors and skills. It’s important that the culture of your company centers around providing quality service to your customers rather than just being as efficient as possible.
5. Build an Omnichannel Mindset
What is an omnichannel strategy? It is when your customers are able to have a fully integrated shopping experience from the virtual store to the physical location.
You want your customer journeys to be fluid across all possible points of interaction – without a bad experience anywhere. That means on mobile, digital channel, or in the store, their digital journey stretches across devices and is consistent the whole time.
6. Improve Customer Experience By Taking Social Proof Seriously
Social proof is a concept that suggests that when one customer sees another enjoying your services or products, they feel more confident in their decision to choose your brand. (If this is interesting to you, check out the related bandwagon effect.) Social proof can exist in the form of testimonials, online reviews, star ratings, celebrity endorsements, comment cards, case studies, and a ton more.
When your customers give you feedback, there giving you something incredibly valuable. They are telling exactly how they want their experience to be different so that they can be happier with your brand. It can also increase the amount of trust they have in your brand, which is absolutely key.
7. Give Them the Opportunity to Give You Feedback
Not only should you take your customer perceptions seriously, but you should give them the opportunity to give feedback in the first place! A bad customer experience, if acted on will deliver a positive customer experience.
With Opiniator, you can have a closed feedback loop. That means that you can know how your customers are responding to your brand and keep track of your response. You can also help prevent your customers from complaining or defecting online, all while increasing customer satisfaction.
Not convinced that customer feedback should be at the core of your business? Then check this article out!
Opiniator Lets You Take Back Control of Customer Feedback
As you can see, you have a lot of options when it comes to improving the customer experience strategy. How the customer feels about your brand is a delicate dance between their interaction with your employees, perception of your company, and experience with your products and services.
Opiniator delivers actionable customer feedback through the mobile phone without ever downloading an app. This means that you don’t ever have to deal with web surveys or comment cards ever again.
As a digital comment card, Opiniator allows businesses the opportunity to respond to a complaint or concern before the individual leaves unhappy or posts negative reviews online. Issues can be tracked until they are fully resolved, ensuring that there are no unhappy customers floating around unbeknownst to you.
Are you interested in seeing what Opiniator can do for your brick and mortar store? If so, request a demo here.