It can be confusing for startups to take stock of the sales process from the customer’s viewpoint.
This is because, in the increasingly complex ecosystem of entrepreneurship, it has become quite challenging to figure out the path customers take to get to you.
They have hundreds of channels, devices, and sources at their disposal to help them find and connect with businesses.
So instead of worrying about their perspective at individual touchpoints, why not lump them together under a single holistic customer experience?
It is essential to work on customer experience for your startup because it can yield some fantastic results for your business. When customers enjoy and appreciate all that you do for them, they come back for seconds – this is retention that makes businesses profitable.
Ignoring customer experience has consequences too – stats show that more than 50% of customers switch services within a year because they got poor customer service.
Interestingly enough, 80% believed that the managers could have convinced them to stay had they only tried.
That’s why if you want to beat the competition, it’s crucial to nail that customer service strategy!
But What Exactly Is Customer Experience?
Customer experience or CX refers to the interaction that your startup has with its customers – this includes discovery, initiation, purchase, and service, among other stages of lead generation and capture.
A well-executed CX strategy can enhance customer satisfaction while also increasing customer lifetime value.
According to a Gartner study, 81% of marketers know that the only way they’ll be able to compete with other businesses in the future is based on CX.
“A satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all” – Michael LeBoeuf
Also, consider the fact that 86% of customers are willing to pay more for an enhanced experience according to superoffice.com.
If you still aren’t convinced about the effectiveness of CX, know that a published study by the Temkin Group found that businesses can, on average, earn an additional $700 million within three years of implementing a customer experience strategy.
So put simply, businesses that successfully start a CX program reduce their customer churn rates, increase customer satisfaction rates, and increase their revenue manifold.
Ways to Ensure Stellar Customer Experience
Let’s recap: if your customers like your startup and its offerings, they’ll buy from you, otherwise they’ll move on to another business.
The good news is that it’s possible to craft a stellar customer experience, so your business not only acquires more customers but also keeps existing ones coming back.
The trouble is that only 49% of customers feel like companies want to work on their CX credentials.
So there is plenty of room for your CX strategy in the market – granted you get it right.
Here are some ways to improve your customer satisfaction.
1. Have a Clear Vision
A clear customer-focused vision can help you ensure that others in your organization understand it just as well as you do.
The easiest way to define this vision is to create guiding principles that everyone can follow.
For example, US-based online retailer Zappos has defined its core values that are then embedded in their culture and taught to all new employees across the board.
These principles are implemented across all customer checkpoints as well as in training and development arenas to ensure that employees learn and appreciate them.
2. Understand Your Customers
The next step would be ensuring that your values and principles are enough to satisfy the CX needs of your customers.
Connect with your prospects and empathize with them so you can understand the situations they face when they deal with your business.
You can start by creating customer personas to help segment them into separate markets that you need to cater to. This will help your support team recognize each one of them and know how to deal with them in a way that gets the best response.
3. Create An Emotional Connection
Remember, as a business, it’s not what you say, but how you say it that makes a world of difference.
One of the best examples of this comes from Leather Skin Shop:
‘A customer was late returning a premium leather jacket they had purchased earlier because their father had passed away the day they were supposed to make the returns. When they emailed the online retailer and told them that they aren’t in the right frame of mind to do it, the people at LeatherSkinShop got to work immediately. They took care of the returns and sent over a courier to pick up the package.
But that’s not all – the next day, they also sent over a note of condolence to their customer.’
This is how one business made sure that not only the customer but all their friends and family become emotionally connected with their brand.
Journal of Consumer Research states that over 50% of retail experience is based on some emotion – our feelings drive our decisions and shape our attitudes towards brands we engage with.
4. Capture Customer Feedback In Real-Time
So you’ve established CX principles, trained your sales teams, and created marketing collateral that connects with your prospects – but how would you know if any of it is even working?
With customer feedback!
Ask them clearly and succinctly how they like interacting with your brand. Were there any retail payment challenges that kept them from shopping their hearts out? Did they have trouble trying on the sizes? Did they enjoy the checkout experience? Could you do anything else to make sure that they come back?
Ask them, and they’ll answer.
If you are an online store, use live chat tools, or email them the survey forms to get the answers you need. Use incentives like discounts and freebies to entice them to take part in your surveys.
None can deny that customers expect a lot from their favorite brands.
As they become more empowered and aware of their rights, it has become increasingly crucial for businesses to work on their customer service credentials.
Nurture your leads, care for existing customers, and stay focused on improving your CX strategy – all of this will undoubtedly have a good impact on brand loyalty, customer retention, and revenue growth for your business.