An astounding 89 percent of consumers, in a recent eConsultancy survey, said that a great customer experience is a key factor in brand loyalty. But that loyalty doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it’s up to your organization to build customer loyalty over time and in every interaction. Here are six ways you can start fostering customer loyalty now:
- Listen up. Companies that lead the way in customer experience may be different in their approaches, but they all share one important thing in common: they listen to their customers. Give your customers the opportunity to be heard, and make sure that your organization is listening.
- Go above and beyond. A good customer experience minimizes customer frustrations and makes it easy to do business with your company. That experience can be made great by adding elements that surprise and delight customers – a handwritten note as a thank you for a purchase, for example – while setting your business apart.
- Make it personal. People like being treated as individuals and value personal relationships. You can deliver and garner customer loyalty by gathering, storing and acting on information about your customers such as birthdays, hometowns, hobbies, past purchases and other unique details that allow you to personalize the experience.
- Create emotional connections. Emotions drive purchasing decisions, whether that purchase is software or steaks. Take time to figure out what those emotions are for your customers and how you can genuinely appeal to them in your customer experience. Don’t forget to share your organization’s own emotions and passion when telling your story too.
- Mind the details. Keep in mind that every detail can improve or diminish a customer experience and can impact customer loyalty. For example, let’s imagine that your organization has an ecommerce site and strives to have a user-friendly checkout process. If a customer has to make two clicks instead of one to start checking out, that takes away from the customer experience. Everything should be streamlined and seamless.
Make it a priority. To be successful, the customer experience needs to be valued and emphasized from the top down in your organization. Also, keep in mind that it isn’t a “fix it and forget it” initiative. Regular conversations should take place in every department regarding how well the customer experience is currently performing and how to continuously improve upon it to foster customer loyalty.