The customer journey. It’s something that not enough companies really pay attention to, and that becomes apparent when you start thinking about just how many positive and how many negative overall experiences you yourself have had with other businesses over the last few years. Sure, it’s likely that you can name a few positives from your last interaction with a business – but did they really guide you through every step of the process in the way that you really deserved? 45% of customers in a recent survey said that they can’t remember even having a recent positive customer experience.
With the rise of the internet, this is something that is even more important – and something that you can master for your own business’ bottom line. The key is understanding just what it takes to create a successful customer journey. Here are some of the primary keys to keep in mind. Remember them, and you could be charting a path for better success with your interactions with your customers.
Key 1: Map Out The Journey Early On – The first step is simply understanding what you need to accomplish and have a clear plan to get there. The steps we’re going to touch on next will get into the specifics of what you need to consider, but it’s well worth remembering that the first step you need to keep in mind is simply to devise a solid plan with a goal and a strategy for reaching it. Once you do this, you’ll be able to start moving towards the right results.
Key 2: Unify Your Channels – Want to help ensure that your customers’ expectations are always met and that you are able to provide them with the best possible level of service? Unification is the secret. When you think about customer interaction, you’ll realize that most of it occurs across multiple channels – at least from the customer’s perspective. Different departments, getting transferred around, and reaching someone who can’t answer their questions can lead to frustration. Create a unified experience and you’ll be able to get better results for them.
Key 3: Make It Easy – Nothing frustrates a customer more than struggling to figure out how to reach the information or the service that they’re looking for. From your website design to your call center to your physical location, you need to ensure that you make it easy for customers to find whatever they’re looking for. Think about your customer checkout page. How complex is it? Ideally you’ll have something that involves a single username/password system and nothing else. The more steps they have to take to complete an order, the more likely it is that you’ll lose them before that order is placed.
Key 4: The Customer Focus – Simply put, if you make sure that your website and your entire customer journey is focused on them, not on you, you’ll get better results anyway. A customer service-oriented experience means. In fact, according to a new study about 76% of consumers view customer service as the primary sign that a company values them. That value is important to them, and will ensure that they stick with you.
Key 5: Personalization – There’s no way to individually interact with every customer, every day. But you can create a more personalized experience for them. This can include a number of things including:
- Social media interaction on your pages
- Personalized email headings and emails based on customer data
- Special offers based on interests, as gauged by feedback from users
In short, you can create targeted marketing experiences to help customers feel like you really value them. Even an automated email greeting sent out on a customer’s birthday can do a lot to personalize their experience and is just one example of what you can be doing in this area. Behavior based email marketing software can simplify the process even further.
Key 6: Data – You’ll probably notice something when you go through this list, and that’s that knowledge is power. The more information you have about customers, the more you can serve them. Everything from their birthday to their income to their gender can impact the way you interact and engage with them, so be sure to use different tools to get info you can apply to the customer journey. That info can help you create personalized product recommendations in an email, automated Facebook ads, and more.
Key 7: Follow Up – Once you’ve handled the initial interaction with a customer, don’t ignore them. Follow up with them in some way – usually through an email. Ask them how you did, see if there’s something that they feel you could improve, or just send a thank you or a coupon for their next purchase. The key is making them feel as though you really, truly value their business. If you can do this, you’ll get even better results from your experiences.
Key 8: Review and Revise – One thing that many companies fail to do is admit problems or identify shortcomings. The reality is that there’s a very good chance you’ll have plenty of room to improve different parts of your strategy. The secret here? Getting customer feedback. There is a good reason that major companies send follow up emails or make follow up calls for surveys – to get the info they need to improve their current customer experience. Doing the same can give you the info you need to identify weak areas in your plan and change it properly.
Simply put, making sure that your customers have the best customer journey possible is a must for any business. From your initial targeted marketing efforts through to the follow up emails and beyond, creating a solid customer journey allows you to spread the word about your business, build a solid brand identity, and ensure that customer satisfaction remains high.
Our team can help you craft a better experience. Whether you need better behavior based email marketing software or a way to directly market to users on Facebook, we have a solution that can help. Contact us today to find out more about what we can do for you.