By getting focused on your customer experience goals and putting the right strategies in place, you can create outstanding customer experiences in any industry.
It doesn’t even need to be complicated. There are some easy-to-adopt strategies that will help almost any business get closer to meeting their customers’ expectations and winning.
Before we provide what is essentially a menu of quick-start strategies to adopt, consider which ones align best with your goals. It might make sense to choose one or two strategies to start with. Once you discuss with your team and roll them out, you can see how much support they require and judge your bandwidth for adding a new approach.
Every business, without exception, has room to improve. There are some ways that most businesses could get better quickly. Here are a few to consider:
The more you know about your customers, the better service you’ll be able to provide them. Luckily, there’s no shortage of questions you can ask.
Do they really care that you started opening an hour earlier in the morning, or would they prefer that hour added on in the evening? Is it important to them that you send out a Happy Holidays postcard, or would texting out a coupon code over the holidays move the needle more? Is it important to them that you’re available to answer questions via text message? You get the picture.
Whether you ask your most loyal customers when you see them in-person or send out a simple survey to a broader group, you’ll get invaluable insights that help you spend your energy and money wisely in improving the customer experience.
Now take what you learned, and get to personalizing! Customizing your interactions can be as simple as making sure to include the person’s first name in emails or text messages you send out. If you can learn your customers’ preferences for how you communicate with them, even better! Calling someone who would prefer a text isn’t a deal breaker, but it can be annoying for your customer and over time might be enough to drive them to a competitor.
There is plenty of evidence of why personalization is worth the effort. Here are two of our favorites from McKinsey research.
There’s nothing more frustrating than having an urgent question for a company (especially one that’s holding you up from making a purchase or appointment) and not being able to talk to a real person. The FAQ page on your website can only get you so far.
Determine the ways your customers want to reach you and prioritize those. If texting is preferable, make sure someone on your staff is on duty to respond to questions.
While being in touch too often can be irritating, most consumers are open to occasional and well-timed outreach. You can share a promotion, remind them about an upcoming event, or even send a quick “thank you” for being a loyal customer.
Not only will this improve your overall customer experience, but it’s a strong opportunity to generate revenue if you’re encouraging a purchase. For example, Hubspot says that “email generates $42 for every $1 spent, which is an astounding 4,200% ROI, making it one of the most effective options available.”
Asking for feedback is the best way to decide where to dedicate your attention. Make it part of your standard process and you’ll keep the intel flowing. Texting a quick one-question customer survey after a purchase or visit is easy for you and for your customers.
“Companies hardwiring a backbone for customer feedback typically see their net promoter score jump 10 to 25 points in the first year.” - McKinsey
Take what you learn, share it with your whole team, and improve!
The strategies we’ve listed here are purposefully designed with low barriers to entry. So go ahead and get started with the one that best suits your goals.
Decide the intervals at which you’ll check in with your team. Once things kick off, be open to adjusting your path and shifting your strategy. First, try putting meetings on the calendar to allocate some time to discuss your project.
From there, it’s simple! Keep using your customer feedback, adding new strategies, and fine-tuning your efforts. You’ll soon be hurdling over your customer expectations and providing higher levels of satisfaction than ever. And your bottom line will reflect that.
Download the free eBook: How Top Small Businesses Win the Customer Experience