Sales and revenue are the drivers for any business, and the customer is the fuel. Keeping the customer happy and making them feel content about your product is vital to survival. Unfortunately, most brands fail to recognise the importance of a well-planned and well-executed customer experience program. Hence, it is necessary for the business’ to understand how to improve the customer experience for SMBs. Improving your customer experience will not only help you gain a better reputation but also new customers through word of mouth.
So, here are six ways to improve your customer experience.
- Establish Culture
Before you go out and provide the best service in the industry, it is necessary to ready your employees for it. It must be one of your business’s core values to be customer-centric. Prioritise customer satisfaction and always factor in the customer’s point of view in your every business decision and overall vision. To achieve this, involve all your employees and teach them how to uphold company values and customer satisfaction in every interaction. Always be polite with the customer and ensure that the customer understands all the details at every information disposition. Teach your employees to be available for the customer at all times. Create a set of strict guidelines that the company should abide by while interacting with the customer. Also, establish the difference between good customer service and a good customer experience.
- Hire a Customer Experience Manager
Establishing a customer-centric culture might be easy and accomplishable. However, ensuring that your company’s values are upheld is a different matter. Hence, hiring a manager is regarded as one of the best ways to improve the customer experience for SMB. Unlike customer service that only extends to product selection and delivery, customer experience is multi-disciplinary and involves customer service, marketing, sales, and product design as well. It is necessary for the customer experience to be equally pleasing at all the stages of making a sale.
Hence, hiring a dedicated manager that would incorporate these points in their managing style is vital. The manager would be responsible for all the customer engagement tasks and would come up with content relevant to each target market. In addition, ensuring that the manager acts upon the customer feedbacks rigorously is imperative to their success.
- Study the Customer
The days of delivering a set customer experience for all your patrons are long gone. Globalisation has put the onus on businesses to deliver beyond the customer’s expectations. So, another way to improve your customer experience as an SMB would be to generate a tailored experience for all your customers. To achieve the said task, it is critical to understand your customers. Conducting a demographical study of your customers involving age, location, gender, etc., is not enough anymore. You have to go beyond. Understand the expectations of the customers. Communicating with them over their preferred channels is one such method. For instance, customers over 40 would prefer communication over phones. However, the younger demographic might prefer text messages or social media for communication. Use different channels as well, such as emails, social media marketing, and website ads. Choosing the right communication strategy also depends on your industry.
Digitising your business might be the easiest way to improve the customer experience for an SMB. Customers are expecting more from businesses apart from the ubiquitous treatment. Establishing a good digital presence will favour your business in the long term. Create an app and provide excellent mobile support to your customers. The pandemic forced businesses to go online, and online shopping went through the roof. Businesses that could harness the power of providing a good online experience profited tremendously.
Live chatting is another great feature that businesses could employ to improve customer experience. It helps the customer solve their issues at their leisure without leaving the website. Live chatting also helps in data analytics and extraction.
- Self-Service Features
Continuing the point of customer’s interacting with the business at their leisure, not all customers want to interact with businesses according to the business’ way. Some prefer to find answers on their own and procure information through their means. For such purposes, self-service tools are the best option.
There are additional benefits to employing self-service tools. It frees up call centre workers and gives them more time to interact with customers who prefer direct support. Self-service tools provide the customer with the best of both worlds. Self-service tools also provide greater transparency and improve the overall reputation of the brand.
- Data Collection
Data collection might not be a straightforward way to improve customer experience, but it can be used as a means to an end. Use data collection methods such as customer reviews and surveys to extract the most useful information. These data collection methods should target the success rate of the current customer experience methods and check whether they meet the customer’s expectations and demands. Also, look for ways to gain valuable suggestions about how to improve their experience. For example, a successful method to ease the customer’s ability to judge a customer experience would be to rate it on a scale of 1-10. Then, ask questions such as ‘How likely are you to recommend this brand to your friends?’ Use the answers to gauge your ability to provide a good service effectively.
Developing a great customer experience is not an easy task and cannot be achieved overnight. However, it can be improved through a planned and systematic approach. Firstly, identify the major areas of development for your business and ensure that customers have a positive experience at every interaction. Then, use these six proven techniques to improve your customer experience and eventually drive up your business sales and revenue.