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3 essentials for better customer experiences in 2022

3 essentials for better customer experiences in 2022

Customer experience is something that comes up frequently in discussions with our clients. It is at the heart of everything we do and our mission is to help clients deliver better experiences to their end customers. And this is how:

Customer experience is something that comes up frequently in discussions with our clients. It is at the heart of everything we do and our mission is to help clients deliver better experiences to their end customers. And this is how: 

The first step in improving customer experience isn’t investing in new technology or replacing all your processes. It’s simply understanding your customer fully, who they are, what they want, and what’s important to them. 

That means adopting an “outside-in” perspective – which can be easier said than done when you know your business inside out – then taking a hard look at every touchpoint where your customers currently interact with you today. 

The following three main areas outline what to look out for, so your customers easily get what they want, while you get better processes that work for your business.

1. Create better moments

In many cases, you may find the right steps are in place but they aren’t optimized to meet customer needs. Like a customer loyalty program that doesn’t notify customers when their favorite items are on sale, say, or a banking app that doesn’t authenticate web-based transactions. Identifying opportunities for new touchpoints is a great way of driving maximum value with minimal effort.

And then there’s the opportunity to take existing touchpoints, and make them better for your customers. 

“E-commerce’s main selling point used to be its convenience, a way to find and buy products easily, from the comfort of your own home,” says our VP of Marketing, Roger Graham. “Customers’ expectations are now so high, online shopping experiences have to go the extra mile.”

In our whitepaper 'The CX Trends Shaping the Future of Retail', we describe the current trend for “shoppertainment”, or immersive, engaging shopping experiences that bring your brand to life, and boost footfall and sales.

Then there’s the trend for “hyper-personalization”, as online shopping retailers seek to replicate the personal service customers experience in shops, to make them feel appreciated, looked after, and wanted.

2. Make it seamless

Look at your customer touchpoints for any considerable drop-offs. Perhaps customers can’t save transactions to complete later. Or your systems gather data from customers upfront, but can’t use the same information further down the line. 

These things all indicate your customers are encountering barriers, which means you’re missing steps in the process that will make their lives easier – and in turn, increase your sales.

Or maybe your e-commerce site doesn’t allow customers to return items to physical stores.

Our whitepaper outlines how retailers are increasingly drawing their physical and online retail spaces together, so that they enhance, rather than compete with, each other.

But a clunky or awkward integration ruins a hybrid shopping experience. So remove all friction from the process: simplify signup, offer self-service, or display visual reassurances that a transaction is secure.

3. Be where your customer is

You may spot a discrepancy between your customers’ needs and your current touch points. Are there channels where they are and you’re not? Do they ever find themselves unable to cross channels? Can they swap from communicating with you over voice, say, to their preferred chat app, all in one seamless transaction?

Social commerce is a growing retail trend that is seeing social platforms become retailers, and vice versa. Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp are all rolling out purchasing functionality, while Chinese e-commerce site Alibaba is leading the way with a live-streamed shopping experience. At its simplest though, social commerce reflects how customers want to buy and complete a transaction on the platform they’re already on, not move from their social network to an e-commerce site, to email and SMS to organize and track delivery.

 

It’s been a buzzword for years, but, as we set out in our whitepaper, “omnichannel” is set to take center stage over the next few years. So rather than meeting customers in one channel only, retailers should be ready to deliver the same customer experience via any channel the customer chooses.

 

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