How to improve your customer experience?
Customer experience (CX) is becoming a new field of competition between companies. According to Adobe Digital Trends Report 2019, CX is perceived by companies as the most important area for business development.
This data shows that it is worthwhile to analyze our customer experiences. Such analysis shows what we do that already exceeds our customer’s expectations, what works well and what are the areas for improvement.
And certainly there is a lot that can be improved in customer experience. There are 5 areas from which we think it is good to start.
1. Change your perspective
It’s about moving from thinking and seeing as “we” to thinking and seeing as “they”. “They” means your customers. How can you do that? It’s very simple. Just get out from behind your desk, go out and meet with your customers.
Try to experience what your customers are experiencing within your service. It should become your habit, repeated on regular basis. It will inspire and enable you to explore and discover new areas for improvement.
Check out how Green Caffe Nero does it.
All employees of our office spent one full day in one of our coffee shops and served our guests, made coffee, prepared baguettes, cleaned up, etc. We wanted to learn more and better understand processes and find ways to improve them. The whole event was preceded by a series of trainings for the office staff. The same ones that our new baristas are going through. We would like to thank our baristas for a nice, warm and forgiving reception and the office staff for their commitment and taking on a challenge. It was a very important and productive day.
A task for you
Think of all the places where you can go with your team to look at your business from your customer’s perspective. Go there, observe and note all of your insights.
2. Promise less, deliver more.
Have you ever experienced being given the promise of “golden mountains”, beautiful concepts, far-reaching visions, which ended with nothing?
Many companies do that to catch customers attention.
It usually happens at the beginning of their relations.
Once they get the customer’s attention and commitment, they think there’s no need to keep their promise anymore. They kind of think nobody will even notice.
Therefore, it is a good practice to implement the principle “promise less, deliver more”.
This kind of approach gives you more chances to deliver a better customer experience or even exceed customer expectations. For example, your customer would probably be more than happy to get the answer from you after 4 instead of 7 days, as he expected upfront.
A task for you.
Choose one area of your operations where you think you can promise your customers a little bit less than you do now, but you are actually able to deliver more than that promise. Surprise your customers and deliver a little bit more that they expected. Implement that.
3. Listen and monitor what customers say on an ongoing basis
Designing customer experience is like a Sisyphean effort. It should never be a one-off action that ends when specific key indicators are reached.
As far as the customer experience is concerned, remember that his recent unique experience with any brand almost immediately becomes an expected standard for other services. So whatever your customers appreciate in your service today can very quickly become a basic expectation that no longer gives them a unique experience.
Therefore, collect and analyze information from surveys, interviews, observations, quantitative and qualitative research, NPS (Net Promoter Score), Internet monitoring and any other sources.
Using most of them does not generate large costs, but provides important added value to the business. In addition, regularly map your processes from a customer perspective, using customer journey maps to do so.
A task for you
Find out what channels and methods are used to collect a customer’s voice in your company. Ensure you have regular access to this information.
4. Think about additional services
The fact that you provide basic financial services as a bank is no longer enough to attract and retain customers. They can receive almost identical solutions from other brands.
To stand out from the competition, many companies start working on value-added services (VAS).
Thanks to them, you can for example, pay for public transportation or highway tolls using a bank application. And in hotels you can order laundry or ironing services, floral delivery, romantic arrangement of a hotel room, etc.
These can be small things. The most important thing is that they solve a real problem or make your customer’s life easier and more pleasant.
A task for you
What is the one, additional service can you offer to make life easier or more enjoyable for your customers?
5. Give your customers a choice
But not too wide. If you exaggerate, your customer will feel lost and probably won’t make any choice.
Imagine you want to buy ketchup and you stand in front of a shelf in the supermarket. If you don’t have a favourite brand, there is a big risk that, due to the wide choice, you will be paralyzed by the decision making process and you will choose none. You will just leave without ketchup.
This is a reason why most companies in the tab “Prices” have a maximum of 3 pricing plans to choose from. One of them is always marked as “most frequently chosen”.
Give a choice, but wide enough. You don’t want your customers to have difficulty in making a decision.
A task for you
Check if your offer doesn’t contain too many options and variants of your services or products. Maybe create some pricing or product-packaging to make the choice easier.
These indicated activities/areas do not exhaust all the possibilities of providing a better experience to your customers. But they are certainly worth considering.