Customer experiences (CX) can make or mar your business. Bad CX can cost your brand billions and a reputation that is completely tarnished. Improved customer experience can make your business thrive.
This emphasizes the growing relevance of positive and delightful customer experience for your business.
Last time, when I used an organized cab service and was mistakenly double-charged through both credit card and cash, it was surely a negative experience for me. My journey went back.
But to my delight, the service provider resolved the technical issue within a few minutes and I got the money back into my wallet for future use. Had the service provider not resolved my issue and that too in a timely fashion, I might have stopped hiring their cab services.
Be it customer service, product quality or just the way customers feel about the brands they have been using over time, customer experience stands above all.
Based on their experience, customers decide whether to continue doing business with a brand.
Let’s explore the key reasons why customer experience (CX) is crucial for and the different steps to improve it.
- The importance of customer experience
- What makes for a great CX
- Improves the satisfaction level of customers through personalization
- Converts customers into brand loyal using gamification/rewards
- Earns you word-of-mouth recommendation
- Strengthens trust & personal relationship
- Makes you stand out from the competition
- Innovative Ideas to Improve CX with examples
- How to Improve CX in a call center? How To Improve CX in Customer Support?
1. The Importance of Customer Experience (CX)
When a customer interacts with a brand, be it by any means – navigating a website, using chat support, exploring products and services, they end up forming an opinion of the overall experience.
Good or bad, customers develop a perception of the brand.
This experience also lays the foundation for future expectations from the brand, provided customer comes back to that brand.
Customer Experience, by far, is of vital importance and providing a delightful customer experience is of the utmost importance to any business.
2. What Makes for a Great Customer Experience
Literally, every single aspect of the interaction with a brand adds to the overall customer experience. These aspects are:
- Product Quality
- Quality of customer support
- User-friendliness and neat design of the website
- For offline stores, cleanliness is a key aspect that forms the first impression
- Promptness, willingness, and courtesy of the staff to assist
- The readiness of the product and its delivery time
Furthermore, the quality of services also includes that there are no noticeable errors or bugs in the running of the website.
3. Ensuring and Improving Customer Satisfaction Through Personalization
Every aspect of a business that interacts with a customer matters when it comes to customer satisfaction.
But, simply ensuring that your business and its services are customer-friendly is not enough anymore; you have to go beyond the routine to make your customers feel important and appreciated.
Personalizing your customer’s experience makes for a greater impact on your business ethics.
When customers observe a business owner’s efforts that are specific to them, the sense of importance they feel goes a long way in ensuring Customer Satisfaction.
There are a number of ways wherein personalization takes the overall Customer Experience a notch higher:
Sending an appreciation email thanking a customer helps to build rapport.
However, the effort should be given to highlight the exact reason for the appreciation being shown.
For example, send a “thank you” email after a customer has made the first purchase, or for being a returning customer.
Your email shouldn’t come across as a typical mass marketing exercise as that would destroy the purpose of it.
Similarly, sending a personalized, handwritten note can be a better idea as it gives an even higher sense of appreciation to a customer.
This is true for every type of interaction. Whether the customer just ordered on your website, or filled in one of your feedback request, be gentle and thank him or her.
Gift Cards or Vouchers
Sending gift cards on specific occasions like during a festive season helps in holding a customer to your brand.
Further, gift cards can be sent to appreciate a customer’s loyalty towards your brand. Such a card or a voucher can have a discount for that particular customer which he/she can use on a specific product or on any future purchase.
Customers can also be rewarded in this way after they have taken a survey which is an important exercise in itself to understand the customer experience.
This way, they feel encouraged to take future surveys as well.
Customers who are loyal to your brand are highly valuable for your brand and they deserve to be treated special.
Loyalty points can be awarded to such customers and those points, for instance, can later be used as a discount at their convenience.
This can be done along with an appreciation email or a handwritten note to make things absolutely perfect.
4. Acquiring Customer Loyalty Through Gamification and Rewards
Keeping a customer hooked onto your brand is one of the key factors for gaining customer loyalty.
It’s only logical, if a customer enjoys the interaction with your website and/or app, as then you have a good chance of retaining that customer. This further creates or increases the possibility of him coming back to your brand.
Gamification is a new concept created to make interactions with a typical business website or an app entertaining or enjoyable.
This is done by encouraging customers to indulge in small tasks that give them a sense of achievement (which is what happens when playing a game).
This makes them feel rewarded and competitive. Another purpose of gamification is to incorporate progression so that customers are encouraged to continue further.
The target, of course, is to keep customers interested in your business.
5. Earns You Word-of-Mouth Recommendation
Consistent good and satisfying customer experiences create a positive chain of future events.
A happy customer is likely to return for more business, thereby, leading to brand loyalty.
Moreover, as a business owner, your chances of getting recommended to new people through positive word-of-mouth increase.
Especially when happy customers recommend your business to their near and dear ones, it is likely those new people turn into customers almost instantly.
6. Strengthens Trust and Personal Relationships
Loyalty is a result of increasing trust that a customer has in your business.
But it’s a cycle and the two can go hand-in-hand.
Loyal customers can be naturally expected to have unquestionable trust in your products and services. Both these aspects strengthen one another with time.
7. Makes You and Your Business Standout in the Market
Companies that enjoy the privilege of having loyal customers get the benefit of being looked at as reliable and trustworthy in the market.
New customers or potential customers get a sense of confidence that putting their time and money into such a company will not go waste.
This is advantageous in the face of the competition as the company starts to enjoy a strong reputation and goodwill.
8. Innovative Ideas to Improve Customer Experience
What could you do beyond having your bases covered?
Like creating a user-friendly, informative website and a good product and/or service on offer?
Communicate and indulge with your customers as much as you can without appearing invasive. Engage them in ways that they feel productive with their time spent on your website.
This can be achieved by:
Using a Help Desk Software
A help desk software enables customer queries and grievances to be handled in a systematic and time-efficient manner.
The software offers an email-like interface with a single inbox. All customers tickets are visible in this inbox and operators can find out who is working on what.
This implies whoever is assigned a ticket can see it and its current status; track the progress in real time.
Help desk software that offers integration with live chat enables you to track tickets even when your operators were offline.
ProProfs Help Desk is seamlessly integrated with Live Chat and Knowledge Base.
You can monitor and improve your operator’s performance this way.
Customer Loyalty Programs
Loyalty programs are all about rewarding customers so that they feel encouraged to become loyal to your brand.
These programs are also about showing customers that their loyalty is being noticed and rightly appreciated by the brand.
An example of a loyalty program can be rewarding customers with discounts or points after they have made a purchase or purchases.
Customers can even use this kind of reward later to make future purchases. Additionally, loyal customers can be rewarded every now and then in a similar manner just to appreciate the trust they have been showing in your business.
Such offers and programs on the part of your organization help in retaining customers and prevent them from brand switching.
Today, Amazon Prime is one of the most prominent examples of a customer loyalty program.
Prime members of Amazon enjoy a number of privileges over normal members, like 1/2 days free delivery on purchases, unlimited streaming of movies and tv shows as well as early access to the top deals.
Remember, this is about valuing your customers, irrespective of how old or new they are to your business, making them feel important, happy and delighted; leading to great customer experience.
After all, 70 percent of buying experiences are based on how the customers feel they are being treated.
9. Improve Customer Experience in a Real-Life Scenario Using a Customer Support Software
For any business, its call center is one of the most challenging departments.
A call center ensures all kinds of questions and complaints from customers are resolved as quickly as possible while keeping the quality of the communication absolutely topnotch.
And with so much data flowing in and out, it is vital that everything is properly organized so that the quality and speed of work are not compromised.
For this reason alone, call centers are perhaps the most ideal physical scenarios, where employing a customer support software, like help desk ticketing system and live chat, make perfect sense.
Let’s understand this better by taking the example of a case.
Ticket Alternative’s inbound call center is dedicated to ticketing and the challenges that a ticketing system presents to businesses.
As its call center primarily supports the boutique ticketing agency, the call center offers excellent service to its clients.
The Bottom Line
Being an organization, you define your brand promise, but it is the customer who determines if your brand has delivered on its promise.
Besides hiring and training customer support representatives, give them the tools they need to deliver great customer experiences.
Your business goal should not only be to fulfill the expectations of your customers, but also retain customers.
Be there for your customers, always be consistent.
Dwayne Charrington is a technical writer currently associated with ProProfs Help Desk. He possesses hands-on experience in writing for the customer service industry. Dwayne is insightful when it comes to industrial challenges, emerging customer service trends, and how businesses overcome related challenges. You can find him on Twitter and LinkedIn.