An important “E” to prioritize in your CX strategy
The ability to provide smooth and hassle-free digital customer experiences (CX) has become ever more important now when the key battleground for companies has been shifted to digital. In recent uncertain climate, customer loyalty has priority over customer acquisition to sustain business growth on the grounds that obtaining a new customer can cost 5x more to than retaining an existing one.
How brands design the digital engagement has a significant impact on customer loyalty and market penetration. According to a Gartner study, reducing customer effort in customer journey is in fact a higher indicator of customer loyalty than customer satisfaction. Therefore, to win customers’ hearts and keep them around, companies should take this insight into consideration and tie “customer effort” to the CX design.
Customer Effort is what business should focus on for customer retention
While most of the companies strive to differentiate themselves by delivering above-and-beyond values for customers, a Gartner research revealed that a strong customer satisfaction (CSAT) rate in fact does not predict well for customer loyalty. Instead, customer loyalty depends on how much effort a customer has to exert to get an issue addressed. Customers who experience a low-effort service are 61% more likely to stay with the company and the likelihood they will spend more with that company increases by 88%.
Customers look for effortless experiences in today’s fast-paced environment, hence utilizing technologies in a way that meet their needs is the key to retain them. Here are two recommendations for customer-first companies to build low-effort customer experiences which can trigger a sense of convenience and loyalty.
Minimize hassles to deliver low-effort experiences
Hassle is found to be the main driver of customer churn. Any effort customers have to spend finding a way to resolve their problems worsens the overall perception of a company, even though the service agent is performing great. Companies should focus on ways to offer low-effort experiences, so customers do not have to get through multiple hoops before having their requests addressed.
Channel switching, repeating information, complicated processes or shuffles between agents are common high-effort experiences that can frustrate customers. However, a sales cycle somehow comprises several stages before getting to a closing, like appointment booking, presentation, objective addressing and transactions. An effective CX strategy should blend all these components into a unified frictionless experience so customers can be offered the right service timely, by the right agent, at preferred contact channels (live chat, self-service engagement, voice call, video call).
Use big data to eliminate high-effort experiences
In order to identify customer experience obstacles that can possibly lead to a churn, brands should utilize data analytics to examine the overall customer journey, study the Customer Effort Scores (CES), and figure out where customers get stuck. By leveraging the power of AI and machine learning, advanced analytics tools do not only help companies to improve service practices, but also understand customer insights and anticipate customer needs with predictive analysis.
Having a 360-degree view of how customers are engaged in the journey map, brands can personalize the experience for individual customers, which minimizes the effort required from customers to achieve their goals. Dots connected across data points also constantly improve customer interactions over time, hence reduce customer efforts as an ongoing basis.
Turn customer experiences into a competitive weapon
Customer retention plays a critical role in driving sustainability and long-term profitability. Without customers who continue to stay, a business is barely able to survive.
Paying heed to the changing needs of customers, brands need to grasp the right direction when they build an effective CX strategy. To be better positioned than competitors in delivering low-effort customer experiences, see how we can help.
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