What is Customer Experience? Examples and Tips

Everyone, at one point in their life, became a customer. In stating this fact, some would be thinking about their most memorable customer experience. This is why companies should start focusing on customer experience – a happy customer can become a loyal customer and even bring new ones through word-of-mouth advertising.

What is Customer Experience?

A lot of people may think that customer experience is the same as customer service. Customer experience is how customers see the business as a whole, by basing it on their experience. It is essential for every business to ensure that customers get a positive experience in whatever channel they choose to connect with – whether in-store, through the phone, or online transactions.

Customer experience refers to the customer’s overall journey in interacting with the business, and customer service is just a part of it.

Strategies to Improve Customer Experience

Giving customers the best experience could be a challenge, but most importantly it can be achieved. Here are some of the examples and tips that can help.

1. Customer Journey Mapping

Customer journey refers to a summary of experiences that a customer goes through when interacting with the company. This enables the company to see how they should be serving the customer from the beginning up to the end of the interaction. It makes the company realize the importance of every touchpoint and all possible customer scenarios.

Customer journey mapping is best used in retail stores that have interactive spaces. For example, a telecommunications company offers fixed home internet services, mobile devices, and mobile plans. In the retail space, they will dedicate a spot for demo devices for mobile phones and accessories, another area for fixed home services by experiencing the TV cable service, and another one for purchasing mobile plans.

These spots are called touchpoints, where a customer gets to experience the service it is offering. In consideration of the touchpoints, possible scenarios for each area will be given a step-by-step guide on how the employee should interact with the customer to improve their retail store experience.

Tip: Always personalize the customer experience at every touchpoint, to make it feel that it is more focused on their needs instead of getting a sale. Staff may ask questions to help customers make better decisions based on their answers.

2. Proper Use of CRM Database

CRM refers to Customer Relationship Management, where it uses a database in order to collect, save, and process customer information. This will greatly help in personalizing the customer’s experience and communication. It can also improve customer service (that leads to a better customer experience) by allowing the system to review a customer’s past transactions, complaint tickets, and even view other staff’s notes.

Maximize the use of CRM databases to improve customer experience by sending newsletters or personalized offers on their important life events and holidays. For example, there are hotels that will ask for wedding anniversaries. Once entered into the CRM database, they can send out offers a month before the anniversary and give special rates on rooms and restaurant menus.

For other events, they can send out discounts to teachers during National Teacher’s Day. The trick on making this effective is by being creative on what to offer them that can make them feel valued.

3. Implementing a Rewards Program

Customer who loves shopping has enrolled themselves even for once in a store’s rewards program. This allows the customer to feel incentivized every time they make a purchase. Programs like this turn ordinary customers into loyal customers, as they see the advantage of buying with the company over its competitors. Some reward programs even make tiers, giving more benefits to loyal customers that make higher purchases.

However, some businesses may see it as a loss in profit but do not realize long-term benefits. Loyalty programs have great advantages for the company too. For example, it can make slow-moving items get more noticeable by giving more loyalty points when buying them.

Instead of giving a cash discount, you can opt to give more points that can be used towards other items in the store. It is a win-win situation where customers get to feel more rewarded while getting the inventory to move faster.

4. Shorter Waiting Time

Most customers do not like waiting. That’s why some establishments offer free wi-fi connection so customers can entertain themselves using their smartphones or devices before their turn is up.

Longer waiting time would mean a waste of the customer’s time. This usually happens in contact centers where the number of agents available is less than the calls (or messages) being received. This forces agents to sound in a hurry, as they also have to meet their KPIs.

One solution is by offering a call-back option for those who are waiting in the queue for a long time. This can be done by creating an option to stay in the queue or provide their details for a callback. In doing this, do not promise an estimated turnaround time as it could not be fulfilled and will give a bad customer experience.

This is a better option than adding an IVR that will inform the caller of his or her place in the queue, but still experience a long waiting time.

5. Valuing Employees

Sometimes, companies have valued customers too much that it forgets the role of front-facing employees. Some have been overworking to meet their targets but affects their performance when interacting with customers. Employees play a big role in customer experience as they are the ones delivering customer service.

The solution: a work-life balance. This helps employees recover from a whole week of stressful environments. Apart from this, provide necessary training overtime to make sure that they are well informed about the company while improving their skills.

The modern world has made customer experience more challenging as it continues to prove that a customer is always right. These tips can help any company to give a better customer experience while getting more profits. Making the business more customer-centric will bring more benefits in the long run.

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