Is customer experience a top priority for your business? It should be.
The one thing you can count on in 2019 and beyond is that the brands offering the best client experience (CX) are going to win.
Roughly 86% of consumers are willing to pay more for great customer experiences. Moreover, businesses that earn $1 billion annually can see an additional $700 million within three years of investing in customer experience.
However, you don't have to be a major corporation to see results. If people are looking for an exceptional experience with brands, then you can earn more business by improving your CX.
Let's see how you can do that.
First, What is Customer Experience?
Customer experience -- it's not a buzzword, it's the future of attracting and retaining more clients. But what is it and what does it involve?
In a nutshell, CX is a long-term strategy that focuses on delivering a positive experience to customers in every interaction they have with your brand. So it's not just a one-off thing.
And it's not based solely on one brand function. Each touchpoint a prospect has with your company should create micro-experiences that help influence them to become customers.
The idea is for every department in your company to influence customer sentiment. This includes marketing and sales.
Through proper information and consistency, you can help prospects see your value. Unfortunately, most companies only worry about the customer experience after the sale (customer support).
So here's what you can do throughout your business-client relationship to create an unforgettable experience.
1. Create Customer Profiles and Personas
It's difficult to please a group of people you know nothing about. So to put the ball in your court, you need to dive deep and research who your customers are, their pain points, and their demographics.
You'll have to hone in on the group of people who are your biggest customers. Then focus on secondary groups. Most companies have several buyer personas so their people can understand each prospect or client they may engage with.
Use this information to develop profiles and personas so you can get a glimpse of who your prospects are. And more importantly, how you're going to connect with them throughout your business relationship.
You can use this information to land deals and keep customers happy once they hire you.
2. Set Standards for the Client Experience
It's good to have an idea of what type of relationship and atmosphere you want to provide your clients with. Try to figure out how you can set your business apart from your competitors.
Are you about delivering the fastest results at a premium price? Or maybe you're looking to create transparency because others in your industry aren't doing it.
If your prospects complain about being left out of the loop, then make it your mission to keep them updated throughout the project. For example, you can send them weekly or monthly progress reports.
3. Plan for the Buyer's Journey
One way to create a grand client experience is to offer something at every stage of the buyer's journey. With careful research (online and within your organization), you can learn what your clients desire throughout their journey with your brand.
For instance, in the beginning, they may want more information about their problem and how to fix it. So an email campaign with guides and tips would be a great offer.
Then when they enter into the decision stage, they may want comparison charts of your product or service. You can develop competitors matrices to create them. Try to make them visually appealing and easy to understand.
4. Go Over and Beyond with Customer Service
As they say, the customer's always right. Well, even if they aren't -- you can still treat it that way. Clients like to know they're heard and are being taken care of.
So be sure to take their complaints and suggestions seriously and let them know you've received them. With complaints, address them quickly and try to get the matter resolved as soon as possible.
As for their suggestions, consider them and see if it's a good idea to implement them. If not, let them know why not.
5. Make the Onboarding Process as Simple as Possible
When it comes time to onboard your clients, you need to make the process simple. For instance, you should create video tutorials, if necessary.
And digitize all of your documents. There's no need to mail out paperwork and wait weeks for it to return. You can have contracts, NDAs, and other terms and agreements signed the same day.
You'll need a quality eSignature tool like eversign to pull this off. This way, you have a platform that's intuitive, secure, and fast.
Documents are updated in real time, so there are no version control issues. Then your clients can receive their paperwork via email and sign them right away.
Speed and quality are always great for enhancing the client experience.
6. Hire the Right People for Your Teams
Whether you're adding people to your customer service, sales, or marketing teams -- you want them all to be great at customer support. They should be able to handle stress, communicate with clients, and deescalate issues that may arise.
Their problem-solving skills need to be up to par so they can manage projects and clients with ease.
It's also good for your teams to work together to improve the client experience. Pick each other's brains to see what issues they run into and how they handle it.
Maybe marketing has information on matters clients constantly ask your salespeople about. They can use that content to educate them.
And this brings us to the next point.
7. Consider Adopting Sales Enablement Strategies
Sales enablement is growing in popularity because it helps businesses to empower their salespeople to connect with prospects and close more deals.
For example, your marketing team creates content for every stage of the buyer's journey. Then your sales team uses that to educate and convert prospects throughout their journey with the company.
This content may come in the form of blog posts, videos, case studies, testimonials, competitor comparison charts, and whitepapers.
It's also essential to go beyond the sale and continue offering great content. For example, you can include training videos for using your product or service efficiently.
It's good to use a CRM to help manage the customer's interactions with your business. It'll help your salespeople engage with them in a personalized way.
And this brings us to yet another point.
8. Personalize Your Client Experience
You don't want to treat each new client like the last. Each one is unique and should be treated as such. For example, when clients sign up for your email newsletter, you can develop segmented campaigns that target your different customer personas.
Then if you invested in that CRM, you could monitor your customer's complaints, conversations, and other interactions with your company. This will allow your customer service people to help them quickly.
Or maybe even send out materials that answer their questions or concerns. Always include the first name of your customers in the materials/content you send to show they are the intended audience for that piece.
An inexpensive way to provide excellent customer service is by using a live chat software solution. Live chat on your website allows you to have real-time written conversations with your clients. It is considered a more efficient customer service channel than a phone call, because customers don’t have to navigate through phone menus or be placed on hold.
9. Give Out Surveys to Your Clients
Not every client will come to you with their questions or concerns. So it's good to ask.
One way to pull valuable information from clients is to ask them to complete a survey. Ideally, this survey should be quick and to the point.
Multiple choice questions work great, but you can have a few areas where they can explain their answer more in-depth.
Clients like to know their opinions matter, especially if you use that information to make improvements that'll benefit them.
You can also survey past customers (both good and bad) to see what they liked and didn't like about your brand.
Focus On Delivering Exceptional Customer Service
At the end of the day, it's all about giving your clients excellent customer service. But not just after they make the purchase -- every step of the way.
From the first interaction with your brand (albeit social media, email, or phone) all the way to the onboarding stage (and beyond).
If you're able to create a client experience that outperforms other brands, then it'll make you the go-to choice. You'll receive more referrals, and you'll notice your client retention rates increase.
It's an investment definitely worth making. So give these tips a try and let us know how it works for your business!