As companies grow and expand, customer experience decidedly becomes a top focus of company operations. One bad experience with your business can result in client dissatisfaction, create a negative customer experience and cost you a customer for life leading to decreased customer loyalty and a higher customer churn rate. The goal in today’s business world is to increasingly improve customer, employee and stakeholder experiences. Amr AlMasri, Regional Director for Genesys, Middle East, explains the cost of bad customer experiences and what businesses can do to build a loyal customer base.
The State of Customer Experience, a new report by Genesys, has stated that 86% of consumers worldwide believe that a company is only as good as its service. The study discovered a growing disparity between customer expectations and the experiences businesses can provide. Consumers believe that fewer industries provide exceptional client experiences and except for voice, satisfaction decreased across all channels.
Meanwhile, CX leaders admit that keeping up with rising customer expectations is their most difficult challenge and meeting expectations is only the starting point. Organisations must consistently exceed expectations to please their customers and foster customer loyalty.
When it comes to poor customer service, consumers have little patience and will go elsewhere if their needs are not addressed. After five or fewer unfavourable customer service interactions, more than 74% of respondents stated they’d switch brands. One out of every 10 people would leave a company after a single negative interaction. One-third of consumers have switched brands in the last year due to bad service.
Not only are customers frustrated but bad interactions elicit strong emotions. A quarter of consumers admitted to losing their cool and more than one in every 10 ended the conversation in tears. Dropped calls, dead ends and having to repeat themselves are the most vexing issues. These problems are the result of technology failure, silos or bad process design.
Lack of progress in Digital Transformation
Customer experiences are the key moments when loyalty is either won or lost. Enabled by a comprehensive Digital Transformation, efficiency, effectiveness and empathy in the customer journey are the foundations for success. Nonetheless, The State of Customer Experience report found that Digital Transformation is severely lagging.
Only 13% of organisations have a fully connected, omnichannel approach. The absence of omnichannel results in data silos, missing chances for personalisation and a lack of visibility into business performance.
More than half use a ‘multichannel’ model, which includes many customer engagement channels but separate or partially integrated underlying technology and data. This strategy inevitably results in inconsistent and fragmented consumer experiences, resulting in revenue losses or missed opportunities to personalise and generate loyalty.
Employees are also affected by this siloed environment. Almost half of CX leaders (48%) say their organisation currently does very little or nothing to make contact center jobs easier. One of the top three problems for CX leaders is having personnel constantly trained on new tools and processes. This is hardly surprising given their self-reported turnover rates of 30-40%.
Employees take center stage in CX
Organisations now regard employee experience as their top strategic objective which they intend to improve by adopting new technologies or linking existing ones. These technological expenditures include customer experience platforms, customer data platforms and unified agent desktops to simplify the experience and empower employees. Furthermore, nearly half of the CX leaders surveyed, ranked workforce engagement management in their top three strategic priorities for the next one or two years.
The report demonstrated how important digital channels are for boosting consumer experiences. Two-thirds of customers believe that customer service is generally better. However, the only channel they are more satisfied with is voice. This finding also lays emphasis on the crucial role employees play in providing high-touch individualised experiences that lead to increased loyalty.
When asked what kinds of personalisation were most valuable, customers chose ‘receiving the services I need at any time and through my preferred channel of choice’ and ‘being connected immediately with the right person to help me.’ More than half of respondents said they would be prepared to pay a premium for a consistently tailored service.
According to the report, personalisation is not a ‘nice to have’ feature. To secure client loyalty and promote corporate success, every component of the customer journey must demonstrate empathy. This means the journey must be designed to produce outcomes and experiences that are unique to individual consumers.
Accelerating growth and flexibility with technology
Several business imperatives to improve customer experience revolve around the cloud, data, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and automation. According to 57% of respondents, the primary benefit of the cloud is improved data access across channels. This data-rich environment will expedite two of their key strategic priorities: ‘Getting real-time insights, analytics and reporting’ and ‘Using data and AI for customer understanding and personalisation.’
These features will also considerably improve self-service channels’ ability to provide convenient, asynchronous customer interactions. While email and voice are the most popular channels today, customers prefer quick, first-contact resolution. Younger generations also prefer unassisted interactions or those that take place in their own channels such as WhatsApp or Instagram.
Companies that don’t actively pursue these multifaceted tactics may lose their competitive edge in the market, both through customer attrition and from labour shortages and other workforce-related issues. Because talent is scarce, organizations must think more strategically about their employee experience strategies.
Automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology deflect and resolve common encounters while empowering employees to participate in high-value, complex and personalised customer engagements.
Winning loyalty through personalisation
Organizations that master personalised experiences will discover new revenue streams. More than 80% of customers say they would buy more or spend more money with a company that consistently personalises the customer care experience. Furthermore, 56% of consumers would pay a higher price.
Customers are inundated with options. Every day, businesses must win their consumers’ loyalty by demonstrating their worth through tailored and frictionless involvement that transforms transactions into meaningful partnerships.
Changes in consumer behaviour and needs require firms to become more customer centric. They also pose rapidly increasing threats to those who lack the agility to keep up. The State of Customer Experience examines how CX is evolving into a new paradigm of individualised, empathetic encounters as well as effective techniques for building seamless journeys that customers will enjoy.Click below to share this article