7 Tips for a Great Customer Experience Strategy

Man in call centre delivering customer service

Standing out amongst your competitor’s doesn’t just include providing a better service or product, it also means offering stellar customer service.

Bad customer service can leave your businesses reputation in tatters and with online ratings and reviews so easily accessible, you want to hone in on your customer experience strategy to give your customers a helpful and friendly experience with your business.

Take a look at our pick of the best business VoIP providers to find a system that will improve your customer experience.

That’s why we’ve brought you this guide to creating a great customer experience strategy:

What is a great customer experience and why does it matter?

A great customer experience is the journey and satisfaction of a customer when interacting with your business. It can occur at every touchpoint from browsing your website or store, to making a purchase, and reaching out with a query or issue.

Great customer experience matters because it increases customer loyalty and retention, reduces customer dissatisfaction, provides you with great reviews and word of mouth recommendations, and gives you an advantage over competitors.

According to HubSpot, 68% of consumers are willing to pay more to a business that is known for good customer service. Great customer service sets you aside from the competition and positions your business as a trustworthy and reliable company, making you more attractive to consumers.

According to a survey carried out for Khoros, 65% of customers said they had switched brands due to poor customer service. This statistic highlights the importance of developing a great customer experience strategy to provide your customers with a service that is positive and helpful.

Developing great customer service invites customer loyalty, with 83% of customers surveyed saying they feel more loyal to brands that respond to and resolve complaints. This should come as a breath of fresh air for you because it illustrates that while you may face complaints or negative interactions with customers, what they’re really looking for is for you to deal with and resolve their issue rather than experience no issues at all.

Overall, great customer service inspires brand loyalty, sets you apart from competitors, increases revenue, and leads to faster resolutions. 

7 tips for great customer service:

We’ve collated our best tips for your business to create a customer service strategy that will enhance the experience for your customers and your business.

1. Understand your customers:

The more you understand your customers, the easier it will be for you to connect with them. Some ways you can do this include carrying out market research, so you can better gauge your target audiences preferences, needs and behaviours.

You can also analyse current customer data to better understand buying trends, browsing behaviour, and feedback. Providing your customers with the ability to offer feedback gives them a chance to offer you their unique perspective and find out where their experience may be lacking.

According to a survey carried out for Khoros, businesses aren’t always on the same page as its customers. For example, 44% of businesses thought recommending products based on past purchases or preferences was important but only 11% of customers felt the same.

This difference shows that not understanding your customers can easily led to time, resource, and money wasted on a strategy that won’t hit home with your target consumers.

2. Actively listen to customer feedback:

There are various ways you can request and collect feedback from your customers. These include Google reviews, social media polls, or a dedicated email.

While receiving good feedback and reviews is ideal, there will be instances where this isn’t the case. When this happens, it pays to not be defensive and instead actively listen to their concerns or issues.

The customer’s view is their reality and if one person is experiencing this, it could be the case that other customer’s will also experience this. When receiving constructive feedback, you may want to follow up with the customer so you can better understand how to fix the issue as well as provide them with a resolutions.

3. Improve your communication:

According to a HubSpot report on customer expectations, customers most value agents that are empowered problem solvers. Customers want customer service agents to provide them with clear and concise information while also being proactive in dealing with their issue.

In the same report, 86% of consumers reported that they expected conversations with agents to move seamlessly between channels. This requires software that will enable you to do this, like a VoIP system that integrates with a CRM system. As 63% of customers had a preference for phone calls, followed by email and chat, investing in software that will allow you to provide seamless customer service is key.

Check out our guide to the best business VoIP providers to find one suited to your customer service needs.

With VoIP systems becoming more advanced, some provide call queues and a virtual receptionist to provide your customers with the sense that they’re being looked after while they wait to connect with an agent.

4. Train employees to provide great customer service:

Call centre workforce management is crucial to efficient customer service and employee training is part of this. Many phone system or software providers will provide onboarding training which will help your agents use the system or software with ease. This helps prevent customers waiting for too long, spending too much time on the phone, or have to deal with system delays.

The more confident your agents feel when using the system or software, the better of an experience your customer will receive.

According to Salesforce, customer service agents trained in empathy are almost twice as likely to be high performers. Provide your agents with the empowerment and confidence to be empathetic and flexible with customers.

Customers expect to be able to communicate your company via multiple channels, so it’s important to train your employees to deal with customers over multiple channels.

Read more about multi-line phone systems in our guide.

5. Embrace technology:

Considering 69% of customers expect connected experiences, the best way you can provide this is through embracing technology. The two systems that will create a seamless experience for both your agents and customers is a CRM system and a VoIP system.

CRM stands for customer relationship management and a CRM system will help you to create customer profiles, see purchase history, and allow your agents to log interactions with customers in one accessible place.

A VoIP system gives your agents the ability to make and receive calls over the internet. A VoIP system is fast, reliable, and provides advanced features that will aid the customer experience such as call queuing, virtual receptionist, and call scripts.

By integrating these two systems your agents can quickly access the customer’s data and view any previous interactions to provide a helpful and fast response. monday.com is an example of a CRM system that integrates with Zoom, a VoIP system.

RingCentral, like many other VoIP systems is now using AI technology to further enhance the customer experience. It does by using AI to analyse interactions between salespeople and potential customers to better understand customers needs and wants.

Have a look at our guide to the best cloud phone systems to find a system you can integrate with a CRM system and other software you currently use to create a seamless platform.

6. Personalise the journey:

According to Salesforce, 50% of consumers ignore communications that aren’t personalised to them. So, it’s important for your continued relationship with your customers to provide them with a personalised experience.

Some ways you can do this include personalised emails to following up with customers with a discount for the items in their basket if they haven’t followed through with purchase.

Using a CRM system will help provide a personalised experience when your customers call as the system will bring up the customer’s profile so you can easily access their information and history of any interactions. This provides customers with the seamless interaction they’re looking for, with 72% of customers expecting all company representatives to have the same information about them.

Call centre analytics are also a great way of personalizing the customer journey.

7. Be human:

With 75% of customers preferring a human voice over a perfectly crafted brand message, we recommend encouraging your agents to be human and authentic when interacting with customers.

Customers want to connect with another human and giving your agents the autonomy and flexibility to do so will give your customers a more connected experience.

Provide your team with opportunities to be flexible towards customers. For example, if you only accept returns up to 28 days after purchase, give your agents the flexibility to extend this an extra day or two, especially for loyal customers.

This interaction provides customers with the experience of your business going above and beyond for them, which is great for both your companies reputation and the customer’s experience.

Verdict

There are a number of ways to develop a great customer experience strategy, based on our expertise, the most important tips to keep in mind is to understand your customers, actively listen to customer feedback, embrace technology, personalise and humanise communication, and improve communication within your business.

Choosing the right systems will help you achieve most of these tips, especially VoIP and CRM systems that integrate with each other. These systems provide customers with a seamless, personalised experience with your business.

Developing a solid customer service strategy will help boost your brands reputation and cultivate brand loyalty.

Written by:
Zara Chechi
Zara is a Payments Expert, specialising in writing about Point of Sale systems. With a Law Degree from City University of London, she has used her legally-honed research and analytical skills to develop expertise in the Business Services world. Featured in FinTech Magazine, she quickly became an expert in payroll, POS systems, and merchant accounts.