Updated: Apr 16, 2019
Giving customers the best possible experience is among the most effective ways to win their trade. Unfortunately, improving customer experience effectively often looks challenging, and according to research less than one in ten businesses manage to offer an experience which their customers would consider “excellent.”
There are a number of steps, big and small, you can take to make tangible improvements to the experience you offer your customers. Here are five of the best and most efficient options open to you.
One of the best ways to give customers the best experience is to keep things simple. Nobody wants to purchase an item or a service, they want to have it. The purchase process is just something they need to go through on the way. The quicker, simpler and more user-friendly you can make the process the better. The same goes for things like navigating your site or getting in touch; the quicker, easier and simpler it is the better the experience for the customer.
Develop New or Improve Policies
Giving customers a good experience is a lot easier if you have defined policies for key aspects of the way your company works. From dealing with complaints to sending marketing materials to previous customers or even making changes to your website or purchase processes, having clear and specific policies on what you must do to preserve the quality of your customer experience can make things much easier.
Sometimes unhappy customers have a legitimate complaint, sometimes we can’t help but think they are just being picky. At other times, they have simply misunderstood something or have unrealistic expectations. Obviously the lengths you go to to accommodate these different groups will vary, but as far as is reasonably possible you should try to ensure that no unhappy customer stays unhappy. Ensure communications are polite and professional yet personal, rectify any mistakes, and when appropriate offer some goodwill gesture on top of simply putting things right.
Customers like businesses and organisations that take a personal approach. It makes them feel cared about, and helps them identify with your organisation as more than just a faceless corporate entity. Actively solicit (and act on) their feedback. Get involved in conversations that take place on your social media pages and in the comment section of your blog. This projects a strong positive image, and gives a massive boost to the communications side of customer experience.
Change Your Surrounding Culture
Ultimately, to offer a truly great customer experience a business must have a customer-centred culture. Changing a culture is one of the most difficult steps you can take, but also one of the most worthwhile. Much of a business culture starts at the top levels and filters down, so make sure you make it clear that you are dedicated to customers. Encourage a customer-centred approach among employees too, starting right at the onboarding process for new team members.