It is becoming increasingly accepted that customer experience is everyone’s responsibility in a business. A customer may value the quality of products or services, but ultimately it is the customer experience that will keep them coming back. Every touch point a customer has with your business contributes to their experience and so it is important that every team member provides a consistently positive experience. 

A customer who has a positive experience with a business not only becomes a returning customer, but also becomes an unofficial ambassador for your company. Word of mouth can be an incredibly powerful advertising tool and costs you nothing.

What does a good customer experience look like? A significant part of the customer experience is managing customer expectations. Expectations of customers and clients vary across industries and target markets. Balance these expectations with your company’s goals and values, and your business will be able to build an effective customer base. A business that listens to its customers will be able to constantly adapt to meet their expectations while staying true to their values.

This article offers some tips on how to make sure your team is consistently providing a great customer experience at all times.

Build a Team That Embodies Your Company Values

If customer experience is important to your business, your company values should reflect this. Your hiring strategy should be to find team members who will uphold your values in their various roles. 

Remember that every interaction your customer has with your business impacts on their customer experience. This means that everybody who has a customer-facing role needs to provide a great service. Customer service is not only the responsibility of a dedicated customer support team. One negative interaction or touchpoint with a customer can ruin their whole experience of your business, so it is important that your team members are consistent across the company.

Manage Expectations (With Some Flexibility)

A good way to make sure your team is providing a consistently good experience is to set guidelines or expectations for their interactions with clients. This could be as specific and structured as setting clear response times to any customer correspondence. 

For example, all emails must be responded to within three hours or within 24 hours. 

Expectations could also be around what you tell a customer in each interaction. Customers always value clear communication. A helpful rule could be to make sure all your team members end any communication by telling the customer the next steps. This:

  • reassures the customer; and
  • makes it clear what they are expected to do next or what they can expect from your business.

When choosing how you want your employees to interact with customers, you should only put in place guidelines that are going to help improve the experience. Rules for the sake of rules or expectations that are too onerous for your employees may diminish the impact you are trying to achieve. If your structures and process are truly serving to enhance customer experience, your employees will be able to use this to their advantage, and ultimately provide a great customer experience.

Collect Feedback From Customers

Every company should always be looking for ways to improve your product or processes. It is not enough to only source ideas internally. The most valuable suggestions will come from the people using your products or services. For this reason, you should make it as easy as possible for your customers to provide you with feedback. This may be through a formal feedback form or through your interactions.

All your customer-facing teams and team members should be ready to listen to feedback from a client. The customer should feel heard and reassured that their feedback will be passed on. 

To help your team, set up a system to capture feedback team members receive from customers. It is important that this information is stored somewhere. Relevant information you may want to record could include:

  • who provided the feedback;
  • what aspect of your product the feedback relates to;
  • in what context the feedback was provided; and
  • how significant the comment or suggestion was in relation to your overall product.

As you collect this information, you will be able to see patterns in feedback from customers and make changes to your product accordingly. 

A lot of businesses use a formal survey process like a Net Promoter Score to understand their customers’ satisfaction. An email asking a customer how likely they are to recommend your business based on an initial purchase or a customer support interaction is a great way to find out how you did. There are various ways to measure customer satisfaction, so choose one which will give you the most useful information.

Take Action Feedback From Customers

Once you start collecting feedback, you need to do something about it. Put in place a process for acknowledging positive reviews and complaints as well as sharing these with the team.

When a customer offers constructive feedback or makes a complaint, it is important to acknowledge their comment. As much as possible, try to call your customer and speak with them personally. If they have been unhappy with your product or service, discuss with them and find a way to make it up to them. If they have offered a suggestion to improve your product, find out more and make sure the comments find their way to the right team. Regardless of the nature of the conversation, make sure the customer feels that they have been heard and that action will be taken.

Just as it is important to make amends with unhappy customers, it is good to acknowledge positive feedback from satisfied customers. Some businesses send a thank you note or a small gift to thank customers for working with them and taking the time to provide feedback. This is a simple yet effective way to add a personal touch and keep the relationship going.

Make sure the feedback is shared with your customer-facing teams. Do regular analysis to identify recurring themes and understand what your customers value. This ensures that your team is focussing on the right areas in their customer interactions. When the team understands what their customers respond well to, they will know how they can improve.

Provide Ongoing Training and Support

Even if you have hired the right people, set guidelines and created an effective feedback loop, you still need to support your team members. 

Organise regular training sessions focussing on specific customer service skills like communication, tone and rapport-building. Even if team members are not learning new skills, it reflects the importance to the company and keeps customer experience front of mind.

If you have identified an area where your team is lacking, give your team tools to improve. The more you communicate with your team, the more you will be able to work out whether certain members would benefit from specific training. 

It is important to have a leader responsible for customer experience who is able to provide feedback and support to team members. Your employees should also know who to approach when they have situations they are not sure how to handle correctly.

Key Takeaways

Your business needs customers to survive. Invest your resources into providing a great customer experience and your returning customer base will grow and thrive. It is important that you:

  • establish early on how you want to provide any customer service; and
  • take care to make sure your employees are on board and upholding this approach.

As your business grows and you learn more about your customers, be willing to listen and adapt. A great customer experience involves a business being in tune with their customers’ needs and expectations. This is what keeps a customer coming back. 

If you need help with legal matters associated with your business, LegalVision’s experienced commercial lawyers can assist. Call 1300 544 755 or complete the form on this page.

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