With Valentine’s Day-mania in full swing, people everywhere are making plans, purchasing gifts, and thinking of ways they can show their loved ones just how much they care. The same is true for businesses. However, with the value of customer experience at an all-time high, businesses can’t wait for February 14th to show how much they value their customers. The reality is, according to Salesforce, 80% of customers now value their experience with a company as much as their products. And Forrester found that companies delivering a great customer experience saw a 17% compound annual growth rate (CAGR), whereas poor customer experience delivered just 3% over the same period.
Whether it is February 14th, or August 14th, companies who show their customers the love will see the benefits across their bottom line. Here are five ways how:
1. Let Customers Be Themselves
The way we communicate with friends, family, and loved ones today is vastly different than it was just a few years ago. Now, not only do you call someone, but while you’re on the phone with them, you’re likely sending them texts, and even sharing photos and videos. Yet when reaching out to communicate with customer support, many individuals find themselves needing to change their habits in order to connect with support teams.
Creating the best customer experience possible means making it easy for customers to communicate with you in the same way that they communicate with one another. Allow customers to easily access support, no matter the channel, and let them easily maneuver between channels without compromising their experience. Real-time multimedia sharing, facial recognition, and thumbprint verification are all modern tools that can be used in order to deliver natural communication flows and create unique and one-of-a-kind experience for your customers.
2. Go to Them
Let’s face it, making your customers work extra hard to get in touch with you isn’t showing them the love. If customers are struggling to find a way to connect with you, they’re frustrated before a support interaction even begins, making for a less than favorable customer experience, and making the job of your support team that much more challenging.
Instead, companies need to meet customers where they are. Whether customers are in an app, on the web, or on one or more social media channels, companies that show that they are going out of their way to connect with their customers will go a long way in showing how much they care.
3. Responsiveness is Key
We’ve all experienced being placed on hold, transferred, then asked to repeat all of our information, only to be placed on hold and transferred again. It goes without saying that this is not the best experience you could be providing for your customers, and with competition at an all-time high, responsiveness can make or break customer loyalty.
Being responsive and available not only makes for a better customer experience, it has significant operational impacts and can lead to substantial cost savings. Accounting for peak hours, down time, and channel preferences are all critical components of streamlining costs within a contact center without compromising on the experience.
Having a support team that is ready and able to engage with customers and resolve their issues directly helps reduce wait and hold times, and increase resolution times, helping turn contact centers from cost centers into revenue drivers.
4. Go Above and Beyond
The digital transformation of customer support is well underway. This means technologies such as AI and intelligent automation, machine learning, cloud computing, deep learning, and more continue to find their way into contact centers support teams will have an easier time gathering contextual data in real-time in order to help personalize experiences and cater to their customers. However, adopting digital-first strategies and emerging technologies in order to create frictionless interactions and experiences is not enough.
Imagine an interaction with customer support where they not only help resolve issues in a fast and streamlined way, but they also have the ability to safely access customer profile data like account information, purchase history, product settings, and more. Imagine support teams being able to leverage this data in order to proactively provide suggestions or recommendations in order to help customers get the most out of their products and experiences. This level of VIP-like and concierge-style customer support is what separates a good experience from a great one and help create memorable moments that stay with customers long after their issues are resolved.
In today’s landscape, competition is fierce, market saturation is high, and product rollouts and feature updates are constant. When combined with just an ordinary, run-of-the-mill experience, it is easy to see why customers maneuver between brands and products as often as they do. In order to combat this and help ensure customers stay brand loyal, companies must create hyper-personalized experiences.
Support teams that can quickly and easily collaborate and share information can more effectively provide personal touches during support interactions that show customers the love and how they valued both as a customer and as an individual. Little things such as acknowledging and thanking individuals for being customers for however many years, or asking customers how they are enjoying the specific products or services they are signed up can go a long way in creating personalized experiences.
Loved Customers are Loyal Customers
It’s never too late to begin showing your customers how much you care. The fact is, the more you show customers the love, the more likely they are to not only remain loyal and repeat customers, but become brand ambassadors as well.
From streamlining operational costs to generating new and repeat business, creating a customer experience where customers feel valued, cared for, and feel as though your team is going above and beyond to provide them with the best experience possible will help transform customer support into a key source of revenue and growth for your business.