Customer experience is a priority for most organizations, yet most struggle to realize their full potential in this area.
Most companies tend to rate themselves highly on customer experience as they focus on obvious metrics, such as calls answered or speed of response. However, studies consistently show there’s a gap between how organizations believe they are performing and their customers’ actual levels of satisfaction. Achieving the best customer experience requires your organization to go beyond the sale itself. The key is to create an approach that keeps a keen eye on customers’ opinions and ultimately takes the necessary action to close the feedback loop.
1. Ask for Your Customers’ Opinions
Surveys are not necessarily bothersome to customers – they’re actually a chance for them to engage with your brand. In fact, creating engaging, branded surveys that look good on all devices helps to create a positive impression of your company, while providing you with the insights you need.
Remember, disengaged customers aren’t loyal customers.
The more engaged a customer feels with your brand, the more likely they are to remember your company the next time they are ready to make a purchase, and the more likely they are to refer your company to their friends and family.
Customer surveys can also help you align with your customers. Today’s consumers have access to more information than ever before, and they are more likely to connect with a brand that aligns with their beliefs and values. Find out what those beliefs and values are by conducting customer surveys at every step of the journey.
Ask them for more than just their “satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 10.” Consider questions such as:
_ How is this product performing for them?
_ Should you offer discounts or add free gifts?
_ Is your company’s customer service responsive enough?
2. Close the Loop
Customer feedback programs too often neglect to continue the conversation after customers respond. If you want to enable a successful customer experience and to systematically increase loyalty, you’ve got to maintain ongoing dialogue and continuous engagement with your customers.
Companies that “close the loop” and continue the conversation in this way experience higher return on investment (ROI) from their customer experience programs.
Every customer response holds the promise of a further conversation and deeper insight. Closing the loop with customers therefore requires not only gathering responses but also acting on that insight.
For example, if a customer shared that they had a great experience with your company, a manager could reach out and thank her for sharing. Or, if a customer says that they had a negative experience, that manager could offer an apology and try to right the wrong, offering an incentive such as a coupon or free shipping to buy from the company in the future.
The first step in closing the loop is sharing customer feedback directly with employees, so that they can take action and learn. To achieve this at scale, use a robust feedback platform that enables detailed reporting so that insight can be easily turned into action.
3. Seek Employee Feedback
Your employees’ happiness is directly correlated with customer satisfaction. When you have unhappy, unengaged employees, it creates a ripple effect in your organization that negatively impacts your customers. To create an outstanding customer experience, you need to have your finger on the pulse of your employee experience as well. While it’s easy to delegate employee satisfaction and engagement to your HR team, it is actually a company-wide responsibility. Ensure that your employees are engaged and committed to making improvements by taking their pulse through regular employee surveys and addressing any negative trends you see in the data.
For example, a problem you uncover might merely be a training issue that can be solved by offering a class for employees, or it might be bigger than that, such as a misalignment between teams. In any case, you won’t know where to begin if you don’t ask employees for their feedback.
Building a memorable customer experience that creates engaged, loyal customers goes far beyond what happens at the point of sale. By focusing on feedback from your customers, employees, and other key stakeholders – and by taking action on that feedback – you’ll be on your way to creating the best customer experience in your industry.
Want to know more about achieving the best customer experience through feedback? Contact us to find out how we can help.