Everyday customers seem to be more and more demanding of what they’re expecting from companies. Customers are wanting more personalization from companies when they purchase products and they are looking to be cared for more than ever. This is largely due to the fact that consumers have become much more aware in recent years thanks to the rise of social media and the digital age. Consumers now want to know what companies are doing for them beyond just providing great products – that’s not enough anymore.
That’s why it’s crucial that every single business understands these customer expectations and develops plans to meet these expectations. Without doing this, there is no way that your business can succeed in the 21st century. Your customers are going to go straight to your competitor if they find out that you are not meeting these new expectations and your competitors are. Now, be sure to keep reading down below to learn more about these rising expectations and how you can develop plans to meet them.
1. Increasing Personalization Needs
One of the most important expectations that customers are looking for when dealing with companies is the personalization factor. Now, this might seem a bit counterintuitive when you think about the huge digital and anonymous world that we live in, but many customers are looking for companies to care about them on a personal and customized level.
This relates to everything about the customer’s experience. For example, more customers would like to see products related to their past purchases shown on your website when they’re looking around. They also would like one-on-one help whenever they are facing problems related to your product or service. A lot of consumers don’t want to just call into a customer service hotline and talk with someone on the other side of the world. They want to deal with the same person, especially when it comes to larger purchases or investments.
If you want to keep your customers happy, then think with your management team about where you can personalize the experience. Maybe you can add more personalization when they are checking out with their online basket. Or you can call up important customers every so often to check in and see how they’re liking your product or service.
2. More Options, Please!
Another big part of this personalization puzzle is that customers want more options for contacting your business. They don’t want to be confined to just sending you an email and waiting for a response, you should step forward and connect to customers through social media. Consumers are looking to reach out to your company over social media networks, over the phone, over chatrooms, and in community groups. This is important to a lot of people because not everyone is comfortable speaking over the phone and would rather do this anonymously.
And this is pretty easy to do in your company! All you have to do is have a CRM or other customer management tool to track which of your customers would rather be reached over which method of communication. Then, you can personalize your interaction with each major customer you deal with making it more likely that they’re going to have a good experience with your company.
3. Consistent Contact
You might think that this isn’t something that a lot of customers actually want, but it’s true in the 21st century that customers want to hear from you on a regular basis. This goes far beyond just simple advertising and automated emails. Whenever a customer, purchases from you, especially if that is a pretty big purchase, then make sure that you follow up with them to see if their experience was satisfactory. This adds a touch of remarkable service with every purchase. If it was not, then you can take the proper steps to help them get back to the satisfied state of mind. If everything was great, then those customers are going to be super happy that you checked in on them to see how everything was.
And there are plenty of automated services that can help you do this, but also make it seem like each email or message is customized for each customer! Make sure to use their preferred channel of communication, as mentioned in the last point.
4. Listening Closely and Responding Quickly
It might come as a surprise to you that customers actually aren’t annoyed by those surveys that you send for feedback. On the contrary, most customers enjoy giving feedback to companies and having their voices heard. Much like with politics and governance, everyone wants their voice to be heard and then translated into action. When a consumer has a problem with your company, they don’t want to just send an email and hope for a response. Consumers now want to know that your company is listening to their messages of feedback and implementing this into strategy.
You could do this by replying to every customer problem and describing what actions were taken to fix the problem. Customers are going to be much happier with their experience when they know that their feedback has actually been taken and not just thrown into the trash.
This also comes into play when you think about delivery. In the age of instant gratification, customers require businesses to deliver the ordered products without any delays involved. This becomes a challenge for the businesses, especially those working online, to deliver ordered products to remote locations. Hence, a business should implement real-time system for an optimized fleet productivity, and in-time deliveries.
5. Giving Front-Liners More Control
Customers don’t want to deal with any more delays than they need to nowadays. Thanks to the digital age, customers now believe that they should have things the minute that they request them and not a second longer. Now, you might think that this is a little over the top, but that’s the world that we live in. and to indulge your organization in a culture of customer satisfaction, your front-line employees should have the training and knowledge necessary to answer every question that your customer has so that they can get their product or service as soon as possible. Make sure to properly train every front-linter that you have so that they can answer every question that comes their way.
Each of these expectations has been building in recent years and have become more important than ever for every business on the face of this planet. Which ones of these were you already aware of and which do you need to develop some strategies to meet?