What is CX?
CX is Customer Experience.
Customer experience is defined by the interactions between a customer and an organization throughout their business relationship. An interaction can include awareness, discovery, purchases, and service.
Customer experience already exists in your business whether you have customers or not. Do you have a system in place that ensures every customer enjoys their journey? CX is all about connections and interactions with your customer across all channels and levels of marketing.
The following are CX facts you should know as a business owner:
- Customer experience is not a sales funnel metric.
- It is not just limited to offline interaction.
- Customer experience does not happen only within your own customer base; it can also happen through recommendations, photo shares, Facebook posts, and so much more.
- Customer experience is not marketing.
- Marketing alone cannot ensure a flawless customer experience.
- Customer experience is not enough for a perfect customer relationship. In addition to CX, you need a good product, marketing, service, team, and positive online reviews.
Multi-channel Customer Experience
We expect today’s businesses—even small and local—to be available on all the channels a customer is comfortable using:
- Live Chat
- Self-service (FAQs sections with multiple categories of questions, and videos with tutorials)
Centralized knowledge bases have become more prominent in recent years. They not only offer customers the most frequently asked questions, but also webinars, tutorials, reports, and interactive tools. One channel may work for one customer while another channel will work for another. Because of this, you need to be versatile.
Gartner research believes that by 2020, a customer will manage 85% of their relationship with an enterprise without interacting with a human. Yes, for real. As a result, businesses need to build a comprehensive library of interactive tools for the customer.
What factors determine the success of CX?
- Big thinking.
- Analyzing data and performing an audit of the customer journey through all touchpoints.
- Exploring the digital channels your customers prefer.
- Giving your customers a choice around interaction.
- Willingness to change and adapt.
- Willingness to involve team members and all departments.
- Having a listening culture.
- Leadership support for customer culture.
- Making changes gradually. Avoid causing stress to the employees, managers, and customers.
A customer-centric culture has many layers and challenges. Because of this, each stakeholder should align their focus with customer needs and expectations. More than this, with the goals of each touchpoint. The ultimate question is: does the customer feel looked after?
What does it mean for your business?
Customer experience is a battlefield for many businesses. Moreover, any new trend that defines your interaction with a customer is a CX (customer experience). As a result, you need to adapt.
According to research by Kolsky, 67% of customers mention bad experiences as a reason to churn, but only 1 out of 26 unhappy customers complain.
Think about connections, interactions, and processes in your business.
- How do you connect with customers on social media?
- Do you interact with them on Facebook live chat?
- How do you interact with online chat? Is it personal?
- Do you create an emotional experience?
- Are you available in real time?
- What is your WOW Factor?
- Do your customers notice your culture?
In short, there are a few points that every business owner should remember:
- Customer experience impacts loyalty.
- Customers have more power today than ever before.
- Customers do switch businesses and brands because of a bad experience.
- 40% of customers said they would pay extra for a better experience.
Why is CX so important for your business?
Positive customer experience is a win for any business, in any industry. However, current CX with multi-channel layers has even more advantages. The shift to contemporary CX culture, which happens naturally when we focus on customer experience instead of only on the sales funnel, has many benefits. The following are just some of these.
It allows your brand to be modern and innovative
CX is crucial. Why? Because it was born organically, from the generation which requires more subtle connections and interactions with brands.
Today, customers are ready to pay more. You need to implement your CX strategy at all levels of communication.
When deciding whether to compete on price or experience, Gartner Research established that 64% of people found CX to be more important than price, when it comes to purchasing a service or product.
It allows you to track and analyze your business interaction based on difficulty
Businesses that figure out their own customer experience barriers can fix problems faster. For example, if it’s harder to find information and book an appointment on your site than on your competitor’s, you will lose business. That’s almost a guarantee.
According to Salesforce, 74 percent of people would likely switch companies if they found the purchasing process too complicated.
Accountability of your team members
CX can become a part of your business’s yearly audit, which shows the value of all team members. If leadership cares about it’s customers, it needs to develop more responsible, and empathetic, employees.
You can find new channels of interaction with customers
By choosing to be open with customers, your business also needs to care about their preferred channels. Ask customers for their preferred channel of communication, and you might find some new ways you never considered. It is so important for your customers to have a choice. Customers don’t have time to adapt to your preferences, and expect smooth communication when they choose your company. These channels can be as simple as a customer prefering that you contact them by email, rather than by phone.
You start paying more attention to the reviews
Reviews are a huge part of a comprehensive CX system. Nowadays, customers leave reviews on many websites. This can, and will, affect your business.
The business starts to build a knowledge base for customers
Why? Customer experience-centric businesses understand the need for, and natural expectation to find, easy information on your company website.
Self-service is the preferred method through which customers communicate. It can be an excellent first step in exploring content and inbound marketing.
In the age of social media, the key is remembering: customers are excited to share their experience in the customer journey, and they can easily promote your brand by sharing your content. What business doesn’t like free advertising? Think about it.
Brands shifting towards CX care more about corporate social responsibility
Corporate social responsibility is identified as leading to better customer experience. Social responsibility equals empathy.
A new study conducted by Drexel University’s Daniel Korschun, Ph.D., identified that “Because a CSR communicates the values of the company, it can become a window into the values of the customer.” More importantly, it encourages a shift in your employees’ behaviour—their motivation and confidence levels rise.
Yes, customer experience is an investment. However, the benefits flow naturally when a business of any size—small or large—chooses to innovate and change based on customer preferences.