Why customer experience is the ultimate marketing tool
As marketers, we spend a lot of time thinking about how to get more eyes on our content. We want to attract users to our website, encourage them to click on our PPC ads, follow them around with retargeting and hope that they will “like” us on social media.
Would it be fair to say that we spend a lot of time chasing and not nearly enough time thinking about what to do when a customer finally converts?
Customer service should be the cornerstone of your marketing strategy. It should be the final destination for all marketing activity. This is equally applicable for B2B as it is for B2C.
When we talk about customer service, we always think about it in terms of what it can do for us. We think in terms of ROI and customer retention and upselling. But what does it mean for the customer?
Customers typically expect 3 things from customer service:
Customer service needs to be easily accessible, meaning that you make it possible for the customer to reach you in a way that is convenient for them, not you. If your customers are looking for support on social media, this is where you should focus your attention.
Speed is also key. According to one study, customers expect a response to their email enquiry in 3-4 hours. When it comes to live chat, customers will expect a response within a minute.
And finally, accuracy is essential. It’s no use offering easy access to fast customer support if that support isn’t helpful. Issues need to be resolved in real-time.
It’s no longer enough to offer standard customer service. According to a Gartner study, around 89% of businesses are expected to compete on customer service alone. So if you are operating in an industry that is typically slow in the customer service department, then you have a chance to outshine the competition.
Discover the easiest way to improve your customer service with these tips.
1. Make your website easy to use
The first step towards stellar customer service is to make everything easy to use and accessible. The customer should be able to find everything they need without assistance. The first step in good customer service is making a website so powerful and user friendly that they don’t even need customer service.
Discover the essential elements of the perfect website
Find out how to build trust throughout the customer journey
In an ideal world, your website would be so comprehensive and so easy to use that customers would be able to find the information they need unaided. As long as this website remains the stuff of dreams, you’re going to need to think about how customers get in touch with you.
Remember that what is convenient for you isn’t always convenient for your customers. While picking up the phone might resolve issues much faster, evidence suggests that this isn’t always the customer’s first choice. According to Microsoft, 90% of customers expect an online portal for customer service. If you want to make customer service a priority, you have to meet the customer’s expectations.
If you want to minimise issues, the customer journey needs to have as few steps as possible. For e-commerce websites, this could mean making it possible to check out as a guest. For lead generation websites, this could mean gathering the required information so that you can follow up with a meaningful interaction.
If you don’t currently know what your customer journey looks like, this should be a priority for 2020 and beyond. This will help you to get into the mindset of your website visitors and understand how they approach your company and what they need from you. Take a step back and try to see your company from an outside perspective.
4. Integrated social media
I think we can all agree that social media is rarely optional. And if you’re going to use social media in 2019, it needs to be fully integrated with your website. The journey between your website and social media should be seamless. This means that your branding should be carried across to the platforms you use.
Once you have decided to be active on a platform, you need to make sure it is monitored for customer service interactions. Leaving messages unread can be very damaging to your company image. And with customers spending so much time on social media, you can’t afford to miss these valuable interactions. If you struggle to monitor all platforms, automation could offer a helping hand.