Putting customers first is essential. And 89% of companies compete primarily on the basis of customer experience (the result of every interaction a customer has with your business) – up from just 36% in 2010. But while 80% of companies believe they deliver “super experiences”, just 8% of customers agree with that statement. So it’s a great opportunity to stand out from your competitors, providing a tangible joy from the interaction with your company.
So how to do that correctly? And why do others fail?
To disrupt competitors you need to have a better view of your customer
Find out what is really valuable for your customers. It happens that businesses invest time and money in implementing features that are important from their point of view. For instance, you are working on the increasing number of channels, rising up omnichannel or multi-channel capabilities. But in reality, customers have no idea how many channels a brand offers, and really don’t care. They just want to communicate on the one that’s most convenient for them.
Understand your current customers Customer experience can look like a subjective concept that’s difficult to measure. But there are a lot of metrics and tools that allow tracking, measuring and analyzing customer experience: - Net Promoter Score (NPS) - Chirpy, Hotjar - Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) - Hotjar - Customer Effort Score (CES) - Time To Resolution (TTR)
Analyze the background of your best customers Follow customer journey, analyze what they do and how you interact with them, what can you change on each stage. Build hypotheses, focus on your best customers to understand how they get experience with your store, transactions, support, etc. And then scale that base. It can pave the way to excellent customer experience. But keep in mind that one principle can’t suit for different segments (multiple countrysides, age groups ). Please, avoid broad assumptions about customers.
Respect your customers time more than competitors
Sure thing, price and quality matters. But nowadays customers find more valuable two other things: time and attention. Time is an essential resource. When your customers do a search, and your search results are not tailored to the right placement, right availability, the right inventory, they are dropping off. As they don’t feel you pay attention to them, you just stole their time. Another case, your customer opens the catalog and see 50 or 200 products, some of them are without images or out of stock, or SKU names are wrong or have outdated information about availability. They are crawling product page after product page, feeling that you are wasting their time become distinct, that caused them to find you less attractive as a seller. And it disappoints them more than trivial words on the buttons or common banner. Prioritize your efforts on improvement of basic processes, providing excellent user experience with interaction with your store even with a smaller number of product items or features. But all that customers see and interacts should work correctly. And only if all basic operations are done perfectly it’s time to enrich the store with new features, wider catalog and more creative staff. You’ll never see the real picture of your business if the essential for eCommerce information about products, description, availability, site performance, simple checkout are overlooked. There are numerous ready to use solutions that can help merchants to handle those issues and avoid customer disappointment. For instance, if you are running web store on Magento, you can hide products without images in the bottom of the search results with our extensions (Products with Images Sorted First for Magento 2, Products with Images Sorted First for Magento 1)
Focus on capability and possibility
Customers don’t expect to see 10000 products on your web store, and they hope to find the relevant one. Thus you need to work on personalization. Personalization is the use of data to deliver a relevant and engaging experience to a customer across channels and devices and measure the impact. Forrester says that those brands who use personalization have 19% uplift in sales.
Now all web store owners have the same level of customer data gathered on every single product in the store and every single interaction with those products like Netflix, Spotify, or any other highly personalized service. The question is, how do you leverage this data to drive meaningful experiences and tangible impact to your business KPI.
There are 33 million versions of Netflix. And how many versions of your web store are there? The closer this number to the number of your visitors, the higher chance that you deliver an experience that really connects to your customer. It sounds like a crazy idea. But AI can automate this process of generating highly personalized versions of the web store. You just set up the rules on the beginning and AI handling all the hard work and algorithms are continuously learning and optimizing the views all the time.
Also, AI saves money wasted on unnecessary coupons. With AI you can offer discounts just for those customers for whom these coupons really matter and have a valuable impact on conversions.
AI is projected to boost profitability for retailers by 59% by the year 2023 (Source: Retail Week, 2018)
- Discover your customer journeys, analyze their needs, measure customer experience
- Keep an eye on your best customers. They are your source of wisdom
- Respect your customers’ time, serving them faster and providing excellent user experience with interaction with your web store
- Personalize offers providing content that resonates, engages and delights customers