It shouldn’t come as a surprise to you if we say – Customer is the real wealth for any business (online or offline). They can make or break your business. Apparently, they are the bottom line of any business. And in this fast-paced world, customers are more demanding and less loyal than ever.
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Earlier, the only expectations that customers had were product quality and service. However, the scenario isn’t the same now. Today, customers want brands to provide personalized shopping experience, quick service, connected journeys, and products that meet their ever-changing demands, (and the list goes on).
Understand this fact – 76 percent of customers expect brands to comprehend and satisfy their demands and needs. And if their favorite brand fails to meet their expectations, they quickly switch to another brand to get their demands fulfilled.(Source)
Ideally, they want brands to anticipate their demands and expectations before they even express. Why? Well, one possible reason could be these knowledgeable customers are aware of the thousands of tools and technologies that help companies meet their needs.
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And frankly, this is true. Sophisticated tools like CRM software, customer feedback software, customer support software, and so many more are readily available in the market that indeed help businesses to understand their customers better and deliver right.
Tools and technologies are many. However, what matters the most for improved customer retention rate and sustained business growth is the strategy you follow. We understand that developing an effective strategy in place might be challenging for some companies. And hence, after doing thorough and heavy research, we are here with a few pointers that will surely help you build your own customer service strategy that is not specific to your brand but also effective and steal-worthy.
What Exactly Is Customer Value & Satisfaction?
Before everything, let’s first understand what customer value and customer satisfaction exactly mean.
- Customer Value – First off, the term ‘value’ can have varied definitions, depending on the context. Here, customer value is nothing but the benefits that customers gain from a product over the price they pay.
- Customer Satisfaction – This is one of the most commonly used terms that marketers use. Customer satisfaction is nothing but the metric that indicates whether the product or service has satisfied customer demands or expectations.
Why Is It Important to Measure Customer Satisfaction ?
Let’s know why this metric is so important for businesses:
1. It Increases Customer Trust and Loyalty
Know this fact – 83% of customers would recommend a brand if trusted and 82% will continue to use that brand frequently. Obviously, customers don’t purchase from brands they don’t trust and also they won’t allow their friends and family to buy from the same brand. (Source)
But how to increase customer trust and loyalty? Simple.
Just show customers that they are valued. Be professional, communicate well, respond to their queries promptly, and most importantly, provide best-in-class service. If such a service is provided to customers, then they will not only trust the brand and remain loyal to your brand but also stay satisfied with your service.
2. It’s Cheaper to Retain Than to Acquire
The second most important reason why customer value and satisfaction should be considered is cost. Customer retention is cheaper than customer acquisition. And reportedly, 70 percent of companies say this.
Attracting new customers is business, obviously. But, turning a visitor to a customer can be an arduous effort. So, to be precise, considering customer retention first than acquiring them is beneficial not only budget-wise but also effort-wise and time-wise. And to achieve this, paying heed to customer value and satisfaction is of paramount importance.
3. It Helps You Stay Ahead of The Curve
Today with easy access to modern-age technologies and tools, companies across the globe are implementing the best possible way to stay in the competitive race. However, it is no doubt that customer service plays a major role along with products or services delivered. Happy and satisfied customers directly impact business revenue.
Hence, along with assuring timely deliveries of products, companies should mandatorily improve customer value and satisfaction to be a differentiator in the market.
Let’s now explain why measuring customer value and satisfaction is important with the help of an example.
So, what do you do when you have a great experience at any restaurant? Well, without any doubt, you would want to go back there, isn’t it? And what else will you do? You would also suggest your family and friends visit the place and experience the same. Exactly the same happens with brands. If customers love your product and the service, they will not only come back for another purchase but also recommend you to others.
How Companies Can Measure Customer Satisfaction?
Now that we have cleared the basics, let’s move a little deeper and comprehend how to measure and, at the same time, improve customer value and satisfaction. We will list down all the steps required to build an effective strategy for this goal.
1. Know Your Customers
Let’s start from the very first step that is often ignored by a majority of companies. And that is – knowing your customers.
The logic behind this is simple and straightforward. To provide a good service to customers, it is essential to have a deep comprehension of their likes and dislikes. Companies should be able to anticipate their demands and provide their services even before they ask for it. But how?
Understand this – Knowing your customers isn’t only about gathering information like their names, age, and locations. It more about knowing their likes, dislikes, preferences, and tastes. With such meaningful information, companies will get a fair idea of the services that would attract their customers. An insight into customer expectations can open the door to countless, profitable opportunities. By simply revising or rebuilding vision plans, businesses can work around to deliver exactly what their customers expect.
2. Use Data
In this digital age, data is considered to be the lifeblood of an organization. Obviously, anticipating customer expectations isn’t possible without data.
It should not be a surprise if we say that the right information will lead to the initiation of the right customer engagement program. There are plenty of ways to accumulate customer data.
Right from clicking on a link to scanning through a website, every customer action can provide meaningful, actionable insight into their preference. Hence, companies shouldn’t miss out on any opportunity that could help them get customer data.
For example, to determine customer interaction with your brand, you can use a web analytics service to track and report website traffic. Basically, you can gauge what a user is doing on your site. This can help you derive valuable insight into what a visitor actually wants from you.
Second, companies should try to collect as much customer behavioral data as possible to derive information like what they like and don’t like. For this, you can concentrate more on social media platforms, customer interaction with the support team, their reviews on recent purchases, demographics, customer profiles, and so on to gain knowledge on what you are looking for.
3. Measure Customer Loyalty
Customer loyalty is what every company wants. But how to measure customer loyalty? We are providing a few ways on how you can achieve this goal.
- Share of Wallet (SoW) – This is one of the metrics that is majorly overlooked yet it is one of the vital measures that can tell you about customer loyalty. Share of Wallet is nothing but a survey method that checks the money that customers spend on a particular product of your brand.
- Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) – CLV refers to the prediction of profit that a company can earn from a customer during their buying cycle.
- Weight of Purchase – This metric determines the amount of money a customer invests in a purchase. While we know that there are more important measures like bounce rates, retention volumes, and visit frequency, fluctuations in this metric could also suggest customer behavioral patterns.
4. Conduct Surveys and Collect Feedback
Sometimes just analyzing your website traffic isn’t enough. Gaining insights other than just customer likes and dislikes is also necessary. Wouldn’t it be better if companies could hear directly from customers about their buying experience? Well, this makes sense.
You can simply conduct surveys (to gain feedback without customers contacting you) or collect feedback from customers. We have listed some must-include pointers below that you should take into consideration.
- Provide live chat option to customers
- Ask for feedback on the live chat
- Give prompt replies when customers complain about your service
- Use chatbots
- Give feedback forms on the website
- Call customers frequently to ask about the service
- Send out an email survey and ask them to rate their experience
- Leverage Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software
- Make effective use of polls
- Use customer feedback software
- Ask for the feedback right after the customer purchases an item
The quality of predicting customer requirements and then reacting quickly and positively is important to build an impeccable brand reputation. We, therefore, suggest you maintain an online as well as an offline presence for customer value and satisfaction. In this guide, we have listed all the to-do pointers that you can implement in their strategies. But don’t forget, every company is unique and requires a unique strategy too. Hence, following the steps shared above won’t be an ideal option. Instead, you should first understand your customer’s perspectives, know the business, study your strategies, and then revise the strategies as required. One last important thing – Serve your customers as you want to be served!