Three steps to an optimised customer experience

26 October 2021 Consultancy.com.au 4 min. read

In the current uncertain and challenging economic environment, having loyal customers has never been more important. Prepared to stick with a business through thick and thin, they can be the difference between keeping the lights on and having to close for good. 

A critical part of achieving and maintaining loyalty is an organisation’s commitment to the customer experience. This is not just the way a business interacts directly with customers, but also includes marketing content, product launches, demonstrations, and after-sales service. 

Getting the entire experience right is therefore critical. Customer service teams need to be aware of all the elements and ensure they work together as a cohesive whole. The need for great customer experiences is backed up by industry research which has found that 73% of consumers say a good experience is key in influencing their brand loyalties. 

Chris Ellis, Director Pre-Sales, Nintex

At the same time, 96% of those surveyed confirm customer experience specifically dictates where their brand loyalty lies. It’s no surprise therefore, that businesses with a strong customer experience mindset tend to outperform their industry rivals. 

A three-step process

To achieve and maintain an optimised customer experience, according to Chris Ellis (Director Pre-Sales at Nintex), an organisation needs to undertake three critical steps:

1. Avoid roadblocks in the customer journey
There are a range of issues that can arise when customer journeys are being created. Unclear steps or a lack of research can snuff out any chance of success before the journey has even begun. A business needs to have a clear idea of who its target customer is and how they are going to get what they need. 

One way to do this is to track how customers use a business’s website. They can be segmented based on different groups, and have specific goals and instructions guiding each step. In this way, if a customer needs assistance at any point, it can be delivered. 

To achieve effective tracking, a business will need dedicated customer experience mapping software. This not only provides analytics and statistics based on how customers behave on the website, but also allows the business to plot their journeys and optimise them in the future. 

In this way, the business can create a streamlined and standardised way for customer service teams to approach any issues that might arise. According to research, companies with initiatives to improve their customer experience increase employee engagement by an average of 20%. Happy customers mean happy customer service teams.

2. Refocus the approach
With so much emphasis on support tickets and solving problems, it’s easy for customer-facing teams to get bogged down in the numbers and forget their goal should really be empathy. It’s important to have understanding and helpfulness as a key metric, rather than tripping over endless performance reports. 

Stepping away from activity-based performance and basing success on the satisfaction of customers will begin to build an image of a business that cares. When you optimise customer experience correctly, you don’t just make your company more efficient, you make it more likable. 

Further reading: An approach for creating exceptional customer experiences

3. Create a personalised experience
Personalisation has shifted from being something of a bonus to a necessity if a business is to stand out from competitors. Customers have come to expect support that’s tailored to their specific circumstances as standard, and delivering anything less is risky.

According to research undertaken by CRM solutions provider Salesforce, 80% of customers consider their experience with a company to be as important as the product or service being delivered. Creating an experience that they enjoy will increase the likelihood of retaining them for the long haul.

Be a problem solver

Companies that leverage technology to ensure everyone knows what the best business processes is to follow, are well positioned to provide a consistent, high-quality interaction, quickly resolving customer queries and issues, and securing a relaxed and rewarding experience for the customer.

When a business works to optimise the customer experience it is delivering, the result is a more streamlined, empathetic, and adaptable response. Happy customers are much more likely to become loyal customers. Investing in what it takes to create and maintain a compelling customer experience is well worth the effort. 

Other articles from Chris Ellis on Consultancy.org:
Five barriers blocking continuous business process improvement 
Enhance business processes with a workflow automation platform