December 18, 2015
Customer experience is a priority for most organizations, yet most struggle to realize the full potential of these efforts. Most companies tend to rate themselves highly on customer experience as they focus on obvious measures of success. However, studies consistently show there’s a gap between what organizations believe and what their customers' actual levels of customer satisfaction are.
Achieving the best customer experience relies on your organization to go beyond the point-of-sale. The key is to create an approach that includes a firm eye on customers’ opinions and then takes the necessary action to close the loop.
1. Ask for Your Customers' Opinion
Customer surveys are not bothersome to customers – they’re a chance for your customers to engage with your brand. In fact creating engaging, branded surveys that look good on all devices help create a positive impression of your brand – while getting you the insights you need.
Remember, disengaged customers aren’t loyal customers.
The more engaged a customer feels with your brand, the more likely they are to remember your company the next time they are ready to make a purchase, and the more likely they are to refer their friends and family to your company.
Customer surveys can also help you align with your customers. Today’s consumers have access to more information than ever before, and they are more likely to connect with a brand that aligns with their beliefs and values. Find out what those beliefs and values are by conducting customer surveys every step of the way.
Ask them for more than just “their satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 10.” Consider questions like:
- How is this product working for them?
- Should you offer discounts or add freebies?
- Is your company’s customer service responsive enough?
2. Close the Loop
Customer feedback programs too often neglect to continue the conversation after customers respond. If you want to win on customer experience and systematically increase customer loyalty, you've got to maintain ongoing dialogue and continuous engagement with your customers.
Companies that “close the loop” according to Questback this will continue the conversation & experience higher ROI from their customer experience programs.
Every customer response holds the promise of further conversation and further insight. Closing the loop with customers requires not only gathering responses, but then acting on that insight.
For example, if a customer shared that they had a great experience with your company, a manager could reach out and thank her for sharing. Or if the customer shares that they had a negative experience, that manager could offer an apology and try to right the wrong with an incentive to buy from the company again in the future (such as a coupon or free shipping).
The first step in closing the loop is sharing the customer feedback directly with employees. So closing the loop works best when companies use a robust feedback platform that enables detailed reporting so that feedback can be put into action.
3. Employee Feedback
Your employees’ happiness has a direct correlation to customer satisfaction. When you have unhappy, unengaged employees, that creates a ripple effect in your organization that impacts your customers.
To create an outstanding customer experience, you need to have your finger on the pulse of your employee experience as well. While it’s easy to relegate employee satisfaction and engagement to your HR team, it is actually a company-wide responsibility.
Ensure your employees are engaged and committed to making improvements by taking their pulse through regular employee surveys, then addressing any negative trends you see in the data.
The problem might merely be a training issue that can be solved by offering a class to employees, or the problem might be bigger than that, like misalignment between teams. You won’t know where to begin if you don’t get that employee feedback, however.
Creating a customer experience that’s memorable and creates engaged, loyal customers goes far beyond what happens at the point of sale. By focusing on feedback from your customers, employees and other key stakeholders and taking action, you’ll be on your way to creating the best customer experience in your industry.
Watch The Coaching Collective founder and CEO Lauren Fritsch share the importance of customer experience in the video below:
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