Do You Have a Customer Experience Strategy? Here's Why You Need One
Most businesses understand the importance of customer service. After all, studies show that nearly 75% of customers say customer service is important to their brand loyalty. However, this shouldn’t be confused with the customer experience.
When companies focus on delivering a superior customer experience, customers say they’re five times more likely to purchase from them again. They also say they’re four times more likely to recommend that company to someone else. So what exactly is customer experience, and how does a company deliver a good one?
What Is Customer Experience Strategy?
Before looking at strategies, it’s important to understand customer experience, or CX, in general. CX is the impression customers get from a company as they move throughout their entire buyers’ journey. Rather than focusing on just one aspect of interaction, a customer experience plan takes into account all of their interactions across numerous touch points, such as:
- Gaining awareness of a company through its marketing and advertising efforts
- Hearing about a company from peers on social media
- Hearing about a company through media sources or online reviews
- Engaging with and navigating a company website
- Making a purchase and going through the online transaction process
- Experiencing positive or negative shipping and delivery promises
- Interacting with customer service support (live and automated)
Why Is CX Important for Your Business?
When companies provide a good customer experience framework at all touch points, they can improve profitability, reduce overhead and costs, and increase customer loyalty. These loyal customers become promoters, fueling company growth through referrals.
On the other hand, a poor CX can sink a company, both financially and socially, as poor word-of-mouth from dissatisfied customers, known as detractors, spreads. Just take a look at some of these statistics from Forbes:
- Companies report an 84% increase in revenue when they improve CX.
- Companies with an above-average CX perform 73% better financially.
- Customers spend on average 140% more after receiving a positive CX
How Do You Create a Customer Experience (CX) Strategy?
To take advantage of all the benefits a good CX offers, companies need to develop a CX strategy. Because CX encompasses every interaction a customer has with a business, both before and after a sale, the customer experience strategy needs to map out actionable plans that will ultimately deliver a positive, engaging experience across those interactions.
Delivering a good CX needs to be a company-wide effort; everyone needs to be on board, from the front-line worker to the CEO. Insights and feedback need to be shared with everyone in order to align the company around the goal of providing a superior CX.
You may be happy to know that there happens to be a correlation between CX and employee engagement: that same Forbes story reveals that a CX plan improves employee engagement, resulting in better service, by 20%.
Developing Customer Experience Best Practices
There are many customer experience planning elements. However, companies wanting to improve their CX need to start by reviewing all of their current CX strategies (there are likely some in place) and then expand on them.
While leadership can often pinpoint some trouble spots, it’s often necessary to ask customers directly what they like or don’t like about the company, its product, or services. This can be accomplished using a Net Promoter Score (NPS) survey. This type of survey lets companies know what they’re doing well, and where there is room for improvement.
An NPS survey will highlight the best, and the worst, of what you have to offer. The survey asks the simple question (often with some follow up), “how likely are you to recommend our product/service to someone else?” It then provides the answer on a scale of one to ten. Here’s how things shake out:
- Promoters (score 9-10). Satisfied customers who are likely to act as brand ambassadors, championing your product or service to others through word of mouth.
- Passives (score 7-8). Customers who could “take it or leave it.” They’re not actively promoting your company, but they’re not bad-mouthing it either.
- Detractors (score 1-6). Dissatisfied customers who won’t likely make another purchase, and may even dissuade others from trying out your product or service.
Once you understand your customer base at each level, a good CX strategy would be to do the following:
- Making sure you continue to keep promoters happy by continuing to do what they say you do best, and anticipating what they may want in the future to surprise and delight them.
- Giving passives a reason to try your product or service again (such as a discount on their next order) to try to turn them into promoters.
- Addressing any issues detractors bring up and making good on any faults of your own. While you may not be able to convert a detractor, you may at least be able to stop them from damaging your reputation through poor word-of-mouth.
Customer Experience Strategy Example
Many companies have a pretty good grip on where they stand when it comes to certain aspects of their CX. Where many may fail to deliver (pun intended) is on the “shipping and delivery” portion. This is one area that shouldn’t be overlooked—and it’s exactly what we specialize in at The Fulfillment Lab. Here’s an example of how we can make a difference when it comes to the CX for e-commerce companies.
Many e-commerce companies use a fulfillment center to pick, pack, and ship their products; but the products are all put into generic, boring brown boxes. That’s not very exciting for recipients, and it does nothing to help a brand stand out.
To remedy this, The Fulfillment Lab has invented fulfillment marketing. Using our proprietary software, companies have the ability to tailor their customers’ fulfillment experience based on their preferences and buying history, not general trends.
Through customized packaging, inserts, coupons, and more, a unique customer experience can be delivered based on each buyer’s demographics, purchase history, and stage in their buying journey.
This personalization adds to the CX, turning one-time buyers into repeat customers and loyal advocates! As a matter of fact, personalization can reduce customer acquisition costs by as much as 50%, increase revenue by 5–15%, and increase marketing spend efficiency by 10–30%. Plus, it helps packages stand out in a sea of boring brown boxes on doorsteps to lease a lasting (good) impression.
Improve Your CX with The Fulfillment Lab
Studies show that 86% of buyers are willing to pay more for great customer experiences. It’s actually been predicted that by the end of 2020, customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator! So, if you’re an e-commerce retailer looking for an easy way to improve your CX, contact The Fulfillment Lab. We deliver a CX that won’t disappoint!