Traditionally, CX has been limited to reactive customer service. The priority was to serve the customers in stressful times. Businesses were only keen to respond to customer questions, issues, and complaints. This is no longer the case. Customers are looking for positive digital experiences. So, it’s essential for businesses to adopt a customer experience strategy at the beginning of every customer’s journey.
Customer Experience Before COVID-19 vs After COVID-19
“The only thing that is permanent in the world is change.”
The biggest drawback for a CX strategy is the idea that customers have static needs. The pandemic has helped businesses address how important it is to adopt an agile CX strategy. Customers are moving from offline to online shops and businesses are looking for better ways to communicate. For customers, it is about their safety and convenience. So, post-COVID, the focus of CX has been broadened to predict and reduce customer pain points even before they feel the need.
A robust customer experience strategy excels at prediction. The analysis is based on the different points of customer interaction. From the first interaction to a stage where the customer advocates for you, customer behavior has changed the focus of CX. Earlier, it may be considered only as a key marketing asset but now it has become a vital infrastructural need for success.
Why is Customer Experience Strategy Essential?
According to PWC, 54% consumers in the US want customer experience to improve at most companies. This means CX is a big problem that needs to be fixed instantly for many businesses. Customers invest in a business only when they feel positive about them. Two-thirds of consumers switch brands if the buying process is too difficult.
The bottom line is that buyers need convenience. They prefer a personalized shopping experience that is consistent across all channels. They demand instant gratification. So, an agile CX strategy that solves these 3 challenges is every brand’s win. This is just one part of the process. Major aspects that make customer experience necessary include shaping customer perception, improving business KPIs and gaining a competitive advantage.
Shaping Customer Perception
70% of buying experiences are based on how customers feel they are being treated. When the experience is great, customers form a positive image in their mind. They engage with the company and tell their friends about it. Customers form brand perceptions based on their personal customer experience. When a business can deliver a customer-centric experience at every point, customers stay for a longer time.
An agile CX strategy that evolves with customer behavior is what brands need to shape customer perception positively. When the perception is positive, brands not only get customers but advocates. They speak about the brand as ambassadors and help create new opportunities, a positive brand image and increased customer lifetime value.
Improving Business KPIs
Whether a business focuses on revenues, profits, or client retention rate, a CX strategy can improve business KPIs significantly. Positive customer experience helps boost sales and revenue, bring back customers, enhance engagement and reduce bounce rates. A notable example of how businesses can improve KPIs with customer experience is ShortsTV, the sole theatrical distributors of Oscar nominated short films.
ShortsTV needed a robust online presence across a variety of devices. Their primary focus was to increase their viewer base and enhance CX. We understood their need and created a comprehensive rights and license management system. This enabled them to deliver personalized experience. The new system also automates viewership control for individual films across more than 100 countries.
Gaining a Competitive Edge
As per Gartner, 89% of businesses believe that customer experience will be the primary competitive parameter. So, a CX strategy becomes an essential metric for competitive advantage. Technology is a primary differentiator -- it can help businesses of all sizes. With custom enterprise software, businesses can get the solutions they need tailored to their business.
A robust enterprise solution is the biggest asset for brands as they can assess customer behavior and modify accordingly. This is specifically great to create personalized experiences across all platforms. A business can no longer stand out from the competition by serving at lower prices. It needs to deliver memorable experiences that their customers need.
Customer Experience Strategy Best Practices
Customer experience strategy includes planning and designing customer interactions. An effective CX strategy needs businesses to focus on thorough customer research, vital competitive insights and overall brand image. A good CX strategy is not just about the people in customer-facing roles. It is an organizational change that needs to span across all departments. Best CX strategy practices help businesses improve customer satisfaction, reduce churn and increase revenues.
Create a Clear Customer Experience Vision
Whether it is B2B or B2C, brands that focus on customer communication have a greater long-time impact than others. So, it is important to inculcate customer experience as one of the guiding principles of your organization. It can be a set of statements, rules or simply CX goals that an organization plans to achieve.
They can be embedded within teams across all departments via training. When all teams understand the motivation behind CX, it can drive the overall brand reputation positively.
Understand Who Your Customers Are
It is crucial for brands to know the likes and dislikes of their customers. When a business understands customer needs, they can strategize more effectively. Creating buyer personas is a great start. Customer segmentation helps brands to identify the different personas that interact with them.
Understanding costumers becomes even more important with evolving trends. A business aware of its target audience can save time, money and effort while maximizing productivity.
Create an emotional connection with your customers
The impact of an emotional connect is immense. As per Harvard’s study on ‘Emotion and Decision Making,’ “emotions are the dominant driver of most meaningful decisions in life.” Likewise, businesses that are successful in creating an emotional connection with customers have a stronger influence.
According to the same study, an emotional connect increases product recommendations by more than 3 times. So, understanding what resonates with your customers is one of the preferred practices of a good CX strategy.
Always Keep Your Employees Motivated
It is vital to assess the technological and training needs of your business before implementing the CX strategy. With eLearning and coaching, teams can be made more efficient. With a quality framework, these efforts can be scheduled and tracked for better productivity. This is a continuous process and organizations need to proactively take initiatives to ensure optimization.
Continuous employee feedback and idea-sharing mechanisms can help enhance CX and assess what the company thinks. Ensure employee motivation and effective CX is by welcoming continuous feedback in a closed environment for all team members.
Capture Customer Feedback in Real Time
Keeping track of customer data and feedback in real time offers key insights that can shape CX for a brand. Communicating with customers with live chat tools, follow up mails or virtual engagement sessions, there are many places for a brand to track customer data. So, businesses need to be vigilant and assess the customer at every step.
Live customer analysis in real time is a great advantage in this competitive market. When businesses gain regular insights about customers, they can create a better strategy suited to customer needs.
Measure the ROI from delivering great customer experience
In the initial stages, CX is less about ROI analytics such as revenues. Rather, the ROI for a good strategy is calculated based on its Net Promoter Score (NPS). NPS is the value that estimates the readiness of customers to recommend a product, service, or business. In simple words, it is the number of brand advocates, a business creates out of customers.
NPS can be used to calculate hard to gauge metrics such as customer satisfaction and happiness. So, the ROI of a CX strategy is based on the assessment of loyal customers instead of just leads.
Can A Business Effectively Run Without a Customer Experience Strategy in 2020?
Delivering positive experiences is a critical aspect to forge valuable customer relationships. An effective CX strategy helps inculcate a customer-centric approach in the organization. Employees start relating to buyer personas which makes businesses processes more accurate. So, a smart customer experience strategy is vital for businesses both internally and externally.
A CX strategy is an investment for the future. Customers can go elsewhere if they find the experience satisfactory within seconds. No brand wants customers to leave.
So, the mantra is simple, ‘Always give what customers want.’