A new year is here! And as with every new year, we take stock of our personal lives and our businesses. One critical priority a business needs to consider is its relationship with the customer. A successful business understands its customer.
If you don’t understand your customer, you’re just playing a game of hit or miss. And more often than not, you are going to miss. One way to learn about your customer is by recognising their voice. Every business owner should be aware of how best to use the voice of the customer to their advantage in 2021.
But what is the voice of the customer? Isn’t it just another of the many ecommerce trends people talk about? In this blog, we will reveal what the customer’s voice sounds like in 2021. More importantly, we will provide a roadmap of what to do with this information.
What is Voice of the customer?
Voice of the customer is a research strategy with two goals: The first is to gain deep insights into customer requirements, and the second is to use this information to influence business development decisions.
Voice of the customer seeks to improve business processes based on customer requirements. Data is collated through customer feedback, which will then go through detailed analysis.
It is the results of this analysis that will determine which implementations will boost the customer experience. No other system can provide such a wealth of customer-generated information.
Uses of Voice of the customer
With knowledge of Voice of the customer, eCommerce businesses can boost:
– Customer retention
– Customer success
– Business operations
– Product development
Improving customer experience is the bottom line.
Source: Super Office
Voice of the customer in 2021: trends and methodologies
The next logical step is how to recognise the voice of your customer. Here’s what you need to do:
Get rid of Voice of customer data silos
Different departments have different functions in a company. But these various functions all work to achieve one main goal – the company’s goal. And as with all businesses, the company’s goal is to make a profit.
That being said, data as beneficial as the Voice of the customer should not stay in only one department. In some cases, each department has its own Voice of the customer strategy and system. That should not be the case.
In 2021, efforts need to be made to reorganise Voice of the customer strategies. This will make sure data is accessible to all departments. Consequently, it means the entire company is using one system so that departments can make uniform decisions that align with the company goal.
The use of micro surveys to assess specific customer experiences will be a huge trend in 2021. They are termed ‘targeted surveys’ because they are taken during or immediately after important customer experiences.
Such experiences include an interaction with a sales representative or a customer service officer. Targeted surveys can also be triggered by certain actions on the website or mobile application.
If your business uses a purchase order template, you should use that opportunity to send out targeted surveys.
Social media is one Voice of the customer trend that is here to stay. Leveraging social media allows for two-way communication with customers in real-time. You can record data from your social media platforms and analyse it later.
If feedback indicates a problem, it’s best to respond quickly and efficiently. The only disadvantage of using social media to recognise the customer’s voice is the subsequent difficulty to convert feedback into raw data. But the information gathered is priceless, nonetheless.
The best video chat apps can help you reach your customers. Don’t neglect to record data from these platforms and use it to shape better customer experiences.
Increase speed and quality of response to issues
Your Voice of the customer system must give priority to negative feedback. The last thing you want is an unhappy customer telling other people how unhappy they are. Word of mouth spreads very quickly, especially if it’s bad news. It can make or break your business, especially in this world of social media.
Optimise your Voice of the customer system to prioritise negative feedback. This way, customer service agents can see it immediately and decide on the best approach. Multiple phone lines for small business are a must. This allows customer service agents to attend to customers simultaneously.
You can also get a virtual phone number free with VoIP. Thanks to tech innovation, this is a great way to stay in touch with your customers. What is a VoIP phone call? It is just a simpler, more efficient system of making calls over the internet.
Surveys should feel like a conversation between you and your customer, not a chore that they’ll try to avoid.
A customer wants to feel like they’re talking to a real person. Preferably someone who is asking more engaged questions based on their feedback. Therefore, using surveys that respond to their answers is a complete game-changer in understanding the customer’s voice. The questions should not feel impersonal or detached from their context.
Natural Language Processing is a technology well-suited to this cause, as it can handle open-ended questions. Skip logic and branching, however, are better suited to closed-ended questions.
Conversational surveys significantly improve the quality of the customer experience. It’s a great way to understand and meet growing expectations.
How the voice of the customer impacts your business
How do these trends and methodologies improve the bottom line for your business? Ignoring the voice of the customer is clearly suicidal for your business. However, it must be acknowledged that it’s also impossible to take each person’s opinion into account.
This is why the common practice is to identify patterns. Are there any specific adjectives people keep repeating? Any specific features that keep cropping up? Take these into account.
Then, you must prioritise your findings. This will vary according to your businesses, but you must prioritise and start implementing the data according to customer requirements.
Here are the key areas where you can implement your findings from the Voice of the customer:
Development of the product
Paying attention to what your customer wants gives you the opportunity to:
-Improve features to their specifications
-Add new features that can make your brand stand out
-Create new products based on their suggestions
You should use the words your customers use to describe your products in your copy. It’s a surefire way to address their needs without working too hard.
Customer experience (CX)
The Voice of the customer helps you find ways to improve customer experience in general. This will reduce the number of customer complaints your business gets. If you consistently work on improving customer experience, your customers won’t have anything to complain about.
Listen to your customer
It is important to listen to the voice of the customer. Business owners also need to pay attention to how Voice of the customer trends change over time. Whether you’re getting customer data from VoIP phones or targeted surveys, with adequate data collection, analysis, and implementation, your business will always satisfy your customers. Win-win for everybody!