Customer experience: the success factor
The consumer of today is more critical than ever before. Research shows that a personal customer experience is, in ninety percent of all cases, an essential success factor to achieve loyalty. Organizations often invest in expensive campaigns, but in the meantime critical customers walk out through the back door. How can you make sure that you are going to invest in your customers in a qualitative and targeted way?
Trust, trust, trust ...
Putting the demands and desires of the customer center stage: easier said than done. Honestly? Absolutely: in the age of ecommerce, we can answer this question more easily than ever before. Thanks to analytics, we gain insights and we can ask our customer simple questions. The moment customers trust your organization, they are also willing to share something about themselves with you. The willingness to share sensitive data even doubles when someone has trust in a brand. How do you create this trust?
‘Trust is hard to gain but easy to lose’. Building a relationship of trust with a customer requires a great deal of attention. The following aspects can help you to get started:
- Honesty is rewarded with loyalty and is an effective way to start cross-selling and gain free advertising; customers start to act as an ambassador for your organization. On average you invest four times less in retaining existing customers than to acquire new ones. Show who you are and what expectations you can live up to. Are customers able to see who they are dealing with? Can they find information about the people behind the brand or organization on your website? Do you display examples of what you have to offer to your client? If you have bad news, tell it like it is, preferably in less than ten words. Do not be afraid to ask questions when you get a negative response. That way both parties know where they stand and what aspects could be improved.
- Recent developments have shown that convenience is key. Both online and offline, your customer likes to see an overview of the offer that suits his or her needs as soon as possible. A slow or inconvenient (online) store loses the battle from the bright (web) shop.
- The ‘service recovery paradox’ is the fact that a customer who had a complaint that is carefully solved, is more loyal towards an organization than a customer without a complaint. Make sure you give the opportunity to showcase an opinion, before they do it in a different, often more harmful way. Show that you would like to assist your clients in making the right choices. Make sure you are there where the questions arise and people can contact you without any hesitation.
- Be authentic and understand the art of projecting the personality of your brand or organization in your efforts. Make sure your mission and vision are stated clearly; every colleague should know them just like everybody should be part of developing new ideas and explore contacts with external parties. It is important to state your authenticity through your actions rather than shouting it out loud. Expertise is not a guarantee to build trust.
- Give customers the opportunity to make their own choices. Try to imagine the perspective of the customer: what problem or shortcoming does he or she experiences and how can you fix this? Present information that responds to their needs and show that you understand one another.
Respect is earned, honesty is appreciated, trust is gained. Loyalty is returned
Make sure your content and expressions keep surprising. The moment a customer steps into your (online) store, he is often already somewhat familiar with your service or product and you surely need to convince. What content will stand out? Avoid common phrases such as ‘we are a quality translation agency’. Of course you might expect this if you want to exist as a translator at all.