How to create a customer experience that shoppers won’t forget
- How to create a customer experience that shoppers won’t forget
- Is CX the same as UX?
- Five top tips for enhancing the customer experience
How to create a customer experience that shoppers won’t forget
When you go into a store, it’s vital that you get a quality level of service. Dirty carpets, low levels of stock, and unhappy staff can lead to you not making a return visit.
The same logic applies to online shopping too. Provide an exceptional experience, and you’re well on the way towards boosting your average order value and creating loyal customers.
In fact, nearly three out of four customers see a good experience as an essential factor in their purchasing decisions, just behind price and quality.
Customer experience, or CX, refers to every experience a shopper has with your brand, from seeing your ads to the emails they get after receiving your product.
If you’re looking to improve your online CX, we’ve put together some guidance to providing an experience that makes customers remember your business.
But first, we want to clear something up…
Is CX the same as UX?
Some people think customer experience is another term for user experience (UX), but this isn’t entirely true.
User experience focuses on people interacting with your website and app:
- How quickly they can find the correct information
- How easy the checkout process is
- How fast your mobile site loads.
Customer experience relates to all the interactions people have with your brand. So not just the usability of your website or app, but:
- The experience they have talking to your customer service team
- The emails they receive after opening an account
- How easy the returns process is
Think of UX like the food you might eat at a restaurant. Equally, CX relates to the overall experience; the speed of the service, how clean the toilets are, how attentive the serving staff are.
The food might be delicious, but if everything else is low quality, you might think twice about making another reservation.
Five top tips for enhancing the customer experience
Even if you sell a similar product to your competitors, you can stand out by offering an outstanding customer experience.
Here are five things to bear in mind.
1. Know your customer
It’s important to know who you’re selling to. That way, you can ensure your marketing, sales, and communication channels are geared towards the right people.
The best way to do this is to identify your target audience and create an audience persona. As well as determining their age, job, where they live, and how your product can benefit them, you need to understand their thoughts about the customer experience.
- What channels do they like to use for customer service? Do they pick up the phone, send an email, speak to a chatbot or reach out on social media? This will help you understand where to prioritise your resources
- How likely are they to want to solve a problem themselves? 81% of customers attempt to take care of an issue themselves before reaching out to someone. This will help you determine what resources, self-service options, and help articles you make available online
- Do they buy online, offline, or a combination of the two? This will help you organise a seamless omnichannel experience
2. Train your staff
While customer service isn’t the be-all and end-all of the customer experience, it plays a significant part. According to Deloitte, customer-centric companies that dedicate resources to customer support are 60% more profitable than those that aren’t.
This means it’s crucial to train staff that interact with shoppers thoroughly, not only in customer care, but the products you sell.
Tell them about the key features and how they will benefit the customer. Which products are most popular with your target audience? Which products would your staff personally recommend?
As well as training your staff, it’s important to make sure they’re happy in their roles. Offering good benefits, thanking them for a job well done, and offering opportunities to advance means they’re incentivised to provide a first-class customer experience.
3. Be consistent
We’re creatures of habit and as a result, consistency is important when it comes to the customer experience.
Businesses that deliver CX consistency bring in 23% more revenue than those that don’t.
This means that providing a high-quality, uniform experience across all channels is essential. For example, if your products are different prices in-store and online, your customers are likely to ask questions. If people get good customer service when they call your number, but their emails are being ignored, this could make them frustrated and move to a competitor.
4. Go the extra mile
A customer rang Chewy, a dog food subscription company, saying her dog had passed away and if she could return a bag of unopened dog food.
After offering his sympathies, the customer service rep gave her a full refund and told her to donate the food to her nearest animal shelter.
A couple of days later, the customer received a beautiful bouquet of flowers, with a kind note signed by the rep that spoke with her.
Many Chewy customers speak of a similar exceptional customer experience. This not only means they’re more likely to keep using the company, but also recommend it to friends and family.
72% of customers will share a positive customer experience with six or more people. Think about it, if a customer recommends your company to six people, who then recommend you to another six people… that’s 42 potential new customers!
Think about what you can offer in terms of the customer experience that other companies don’t. It doesn’t have to be expensive; even a handwritten thank you note in an order says a lot.
5. Ask for feedback
And finally, how can you make the customer experience better? By asking your customers for feedback.
Feedback is invaluable for all eCommerce stores as it allows you to see what you’re doing well, and where there is room for improvement.
In a study by Barclays, 85% of SMEs said customer feedback has helped them improve the experience they provide.
It’s best to be proactive rather than reactive regarding feedback. After all, it’s better for a customer to come directly to you with negative feedback than to post it publicly on your Google Business Profile or Trustpilot.
Ask customers to fill in a short survey after they use your online chat functionality or speak to a customer service rep. Send an email after they buy a product. Send them an SMS asking them to rate their experience out of ten.
While guessing what your customers want to see can bring mixed results, actually asking them can lead to widespread benefits, and improved CX moving forward.