If you're wondering what you can do to improve your customers' experience with your business, perhaps it's time to create a customer experience (CX) strategy.
The CX entails all interactions a consumer has with your brand. It affects how visitors feel about your company, what they think and whether or not they'll become loyal customers. Of course, the more positive the experience, the higher the chance they'll convert. That's why it's so important to have a solid strategy in place.
Research conducted by Bain & Company found that 80 percent of companies believe their CX was great when, in reality, only 8 percent of their customers agree. That's a miscalculation far too high to ignore. You want to know that CX vision your business has aligns with reality and your customers are satisfied.
If you need a revamped customer experience strategy, here are three tips to help you get started.
1. Understand your target market.
You have no strategy if you aren't crystal clear on who you're marketing to. By understanding your target market, you identify the problems they need solved, what they're interested in and how you can cater to their needs.
Start by creating buyer personas, which are fleshed-out profiles of your ideal customers. You need to include all the information about them you can to make your target clearer. This includes age, location, buying behaviors, interests, issues and more. Figure out why your audience would be interested in your product, how they'll use it and what motivates them to make a purchase.
If you have existing customers, send out a survey or directly ask them what you'd like to know. Ask them questions relevant to where they are in the sales funnel. Take the data you receive and streamline your customer experience strategy around it. The more information you have on your customers – both existing and potential – the better you'll understand what they need and how to give it to them.
2. Map out the customer journey.
Once you have a clear idea of who you're marketing to, it's easier to map out the customer journey. This is the sum of all the interactions that consumers have with your business and the experience of being your business's customer.
It's crucial when visitors are scouring your site – especially for the first time – that the navigation is seamless. You don't want long page-loading times, glitches, error pages ... the list goes on. You want visitors to visit your site and explore it however they'd like so their questions are answered and their needs are met.
According to Salesforce's State of the Connected Consumer report, 70 percent of customers consider connected processes to be an essential factor in gaining their business, such as seamlessly going from page to page or making suggestions based on previous searches.
For the most accurate customer journey, gather all the data you have on your current customer base. Figure out your customer's mindset at each stage of the funnel. Consider what motivates them to move from point A to point B when interacting with your brand. Think about where they struggle to find the answers they're looking for. All of these things will help you map out a customer journey that will aid your strategy.
3. Create emotional connections.
If businesses treated customers like they were just another number, most would go out of business. As consumers are pushed further down the funnel toward making a purchase, it's important to make them feel special and show that their needs come first.
According to Salesforce, 84 percent of customers say being treated like a person – not a number – is very important to winning their business. Consumers know that if one company doesn't appreciate their business, another will. They have endless options, which is why it's essential to show them why they should buy from you.
What's the one thing you can be sure to offer them that other companies can't? A customer experience where they feel understood and listened to.
According to Harvard Business Review, there are five emotional motivators for consumers:
1. Standing out from the crowd
2. Having confidence in the future
3. Enjoying a sense of well being
4. Feeling a sense of freedom
5. Feeling a sense of thrill
Take these feelings into account when creating your CX strategy. Identify how your customers relate to your brand and its products (including the emotional factors involved) so you continue creating products that meet their needs.
Over to you
In business, your success depends on consumers and how they feel about their experience with your brand. If something is missing, they'll go to one of the million other options they have, so it's important to make them feel valued and heard.
Mapping out the customer journey will help you see where there are gaps in your CX and how to fix them. If you can't connect with your audience on an emotional level, they'll feel like just another number on your list. You must identify the pain points of your customers if you're going to create a CX strategy that brings in revenue and keeps customers happy.