In a crowded online marketplace, customer experience has become a key differentiator to businesses wanting to compete at the front of the pack.. Excellent customer experiences increases the customer’s brand loyalty. And brand loyalty leads to repeat business, increasing the value of the customer over time.
Creating an excellent customer experience is really an exercise in common sense. The easiest way to create a good experience is to think like your customers and treat them as you would expect to be treated. Here are three tips to help you get started:
- Make it easy for customers to do business with you. A website needs to be clear and easy to navigate, especially for mobile users. The checkout process should be easy and secure with customer order information easily accessible.
- Make it easy for customers to talk to you. Make customer service contact information easy to find. Create multiple channels for them to reach out; telephone, email, chat, social. If a contact channel is indicated as available, make sure it is monitored. There is nothing more frustrating to a customer trying to reach out than to be sent to voicemail, not receive a prompt email response, or when no one responds to chat..
- Ensure your customer service staff is knowledgeable and able. If there are common questions or issues that pop up, make sure there are standard responses created to make communication more fluid between your staff and customers. Make information that might be needed by staff easily accessible, such as; shipping status, invoices, or product information.
- Courteousness, friendliness and empathy make a lasting impression. A friendly, emphatic, customer service representative that sounds like they actually want to help an irritated customer can go a long way to preserve the relationship with them, and increase their loyalty and dollar value to the business.
Take a look at American Express’s Open Forum “The Dos and Don’ts of Serving Customers”. It clearly outlines what sellers need to do to create a customer experience that is centered on what satisfying the needs of the customer in the way most convenient for them, fostering a reputation of excellent service.