The entire reason you created a business in the first place was probably to help a customer meet a need or solve a problem.
You should operate in the same way. But most brands have lost sight of what’s truly important: the customer.
If you don’t put your customer’s needs and issues above all else, you’ll have to deal with the consequences. And they’re not so sweet.
Gartner research shows that poor customer experiences will ruin a whopping 30% of digital business projects.
Your company could be one of them. Unless you decide to become customer-centric.
But what exactly does it mean to be a customer-centric company? And why is it important?
Why is it Important to be Customer-centric?
A recent study asked what characteristics were important for companies to have when trying to develop a truly “digital native” culture.
The results of the research proved that 58% of respondents think that it’s most important to be customer-centric.
But becoming customer-centric doesn’t just happen instantly.
You have to understand what customer centricity truly is and build a solid strategy to transform your brand in a meaningful way.
Customer centricity isn’t just about offering excellent customer service.
It means offering a top-notch experience at every stage of the buying process, from awareness to purchase and even into post-purchase.
At its core, it means putting customers first above all else. To do this, you must first understand and offer a quality customer value.
What can customers gain from your product? Why should they care? And how much effort do they have to put so as to use or buy your products and services?
You can gain insight into these questions by collecting data (which you can later use to make improvements to the customer journey and overall customer experience).
By setting your focus on customer service values, the customer journey, and customer experience, you will naturally develop a customer-centric brand.
One of the quickest and effective ways to gather this data is through collecting customer feedback.
Do You Collect Customer Feedback?
To truly be a customer-centric company, you have to communicate with your customers often (and well).
The good news? There are tons of different platforms that you can use to collect feedback in today’s digital world.
You can even use some of the touchpoints you already have in place to communicate with customers to ask them their opinion about your industry and brand, such as:
– Phone calls
– Live chat
– In-app messaging
– SMS messaging
– Facebook messenger
– Community message boards on your website
Use these channels of communication to learn about your customers, their likes, and their dislikes. The value of the insight and data you can collect is huge.
You can even do qualitative research by collecting customer satisfaction (CSAT) ratings2 that can help you understand how your customers truly feel about your brand and the support you offer.
Collect these ratings by sending customers surveys after their agent-customer interactions have ended. These CSAT survey questions usually look something like this:
This feature is built into Freshdesk’s platform and can be sent out after each support ticket.
This data can help you keep track of your agent’s performance, the quality of your service, and what your customers think you need to improve on.
It also shows customers that you value their opinion and want their voices to be heard.
In Freshdesk, you can even customize the point scales and questions that you want to use when asking CSAT survey questions.
For example, you might want a seven-point scale survey instead of a five-point scale survey. Or maybe you want to ask additional custom questions at the end of the survey.
This is all possible in Freshdesk. One single account can create as many as ten different CSAT surveys. Only one survey can remain activated at a time.
Do You Give Your Team the Tools They Need to Provide Helpful Support?
Making sure that your customers have a positive experience is crucial to your success
Studies show that it takes as many as 12 positive customer experiences to make up for just one unresolved negative experience.
That’s why you have to take care of customers experiencing a negative issue as soon as possible.
This all boils down to fully understanding your customers and knowing the best ways to support them.
The best way to make sure that this happens is to empower your support team with the knowledge and tools they need to turn any negative experience around quickly.
That way, they can provide quick and comprehensive support that your customers want and need.
Help desk is the best way to empower your agents and put your customers at the center of your business.
A customer-centric helpdesk tries to reduce the agent effort that is required to satisfy each customer. That way, agents can help more customers without burnout.
Automated features in Freshdesk help agents to automatically handle tasks based on time and event-based triggers.
You can even create your own customized workflows so that each ticket ends up in the hands of the best available agent.
If you don’t keep track of your metrics, you’ll never know if your agents are truly working as effectively as possible.
Reporting and analytics features can help you and your team track whether you are truly performing and making customers happy.
Do You Share Customer Success Stories?
When you display customer success stories on your site, visitors browsing around will be able to see how much you truly care about buyers.
And when you collect customer success stories after a purchase, you’ll show clients that your relationship with them doesn’t end with a purchase.
This action can result to more trusting customers since 68% of consumers3 say that positive online reviews make them more likely to buy from a business.
When you’re concerned about the value you deliver to customers after they’ve already handed over their money, you can be sure that every customer is truly happy with your brand.
If they aren’t, you can immediately assign your support team to fix the issue.
If they are, you can celebrate your customer success by asking them if you can share their positive experience with others.
When you collect customer feedback, as we discussed earlier, share the stories of satisfied customers on your website or social media pages and celebrate each one of them.
Do You Measure the Effectiveness of Customer Centricity?
Every business will have different customers metrics that they use to measure customer centricity.
But there are two customer-centric metrics that every company should monitor:
– Churn rate
– Customer lifetime value (CLV)
Let’s go over churn rate first.
Churn rate is important because acquiring new customers is more difficult than ever before. It costs up to seven times more to gain one new customer than it does to retain one.
That’s why so many companies are focused on keeping current customers instead of finding new buyers.
Keeping track of your churn rate can help you understand how many customers are leaving and how many are loyal.
If your churn rates are high, you should implement some customer-centric strategies and monitor churn rates to see if it decreases. If it does, you’re onto something.
To calculate your churn rate, take the total number of your customers who left in the last year and divide it by your average number of total customers within the same 12 months period.
Customer lifetime value, also known as CLV, refers to the profits that your company makes from any given customer.
Calculating CLV helps you understand how much each customer is spending before moving on from your company.
Your products and services were created to help customers meet a need or solve a problem. Your entire brand should operate in the same manner, with the customer at the center of it all.
You can do this by being a customer-centric company and offering an excellent customer experience at every stage of the buying process.
Customer-centric companies collect customer feedback at every chance they get.
They value customer opinions and use the information to make improvements to their strategy and operations.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Reliable Communication