Everyone understands that a bad customer experience will drive people away and stop them from coming back. Does this mean that the opposite is true, though? Does it mean that a positive customer experience will keep people coming back for more? Well, if the customer experience statistics are to be believed — yes, it does.
PwC did a study titled “Experience is Everything” that showed 42% of the 15,000 consumers polled said they would be willing to pay more for a friendly experience. 52% of respondents said they would be willing to pay more for fast and efficient customer experience when shopping.
A big part of delivering on that critical customer experience is having an excellent website that performs well. If you don’t have a modern website designed to move customers along the sales funnel, then you’re missing out on a lot of potential for new customers. Your poor website design could even be costing you money.
People place less value on uniqueness and personalization than you may think. Every consumer is looking for four things in the ultimate user experience – speed, convenience, knowledge, and friendly service. They are also willing to pay a premium to get those things.
Speed is an integral part of small business website design. The issue of speed stretches much further than the website. Whether you are offering something simple like instant service or something as complicated as instant delivery, people will pay extra to get it. Over 40% of people who responded to PwC’s Global Consumer Insights Survey say they would gladly pay extra to get same-day delivery. The faster it takes a package to reach its destination, the more expensive it is. Even so, people are willing to pay that for convenience.
What makes speed important is that people really don’t like having to wait. The general population as a whole never wants to be left waiting. We live in an age of instant gratification thanks to smartphones and computers. That means we can get just about anything we want when we want it. This doesn’t stop at delivery. Customers want to be able to get answers from customer service as soon as possible.
Customers also expect websites to load as quickly as possible, which is something to keep in mind during website design and development. The average user gives a website less than 8 seconds before they decide to move on. If people can’t get what they want fast enough from you, they will find someone else who can meet their demands.
Knowledge is an essential part of customer service because customers come to you when they don’t know the answer. Customers won’t be impressed if you can’t help them.
In fact, 46% of consumers say they would abandon a brand if the employees weren’t knowledgeable. Lack of knowledge is becoming a severe problem that needs to be addressed before it’s too late. Only 38% of people said that the customer service employees they talked to understood their needs. The problem isn’t much better outside of the United States, with 46% of people saying the same.
Knowledge is essential because it builds trust and confidence. If the customer gets bad information from an employee and has to get the answers on their own, it makes them doubt the quality of your business. Even an honest mistake can come back to bite you. However, if customers get the information they want or something on top of that, they will trust your business and be more likely to return.
When representatives know the product, service, and business, they can clear customer doubts and move past any roadblocks they encounter. Customers can voice concerns and have doubts about how something works or that it might not do what they need. Knowledgeable agents can identify the essential features the customer needs and explain them in detail to close the sale. They can convey to customers how your products and services not just meet customer expectations, but even surpass them.
Consumers want apps and websites to load as quickly and conveniently as possible. The average consumer is much busier than ever before. Automation makes the experience better and easier by speeding things along. It also helps the customer anticipate what to expect next.
Don’t rely too heavily on automation, however, as only 3% of consumers said they wanted the process to be wholly automated. Automate where you can, but make sure a customer can contact a human when needed.
Meeting convenience needs is often a matter of how and not necessarily what, like you might expect. It’s about how the process functions. Businesses tend to think that making a transaction slightly easier is enough for convenience. Taking this approach means missing out on plenty of potential opportunities to attract customers and keep them loyal to your business. Customers want things to be easier and more convenient across the board – not just with the main transaction.
How do customers search for your product? Is it easy to find the information they’re looking for? How easy is it to contact someone when they need it? What is the delivery process like? All of these play a role in a convenient experience. Think about how you enjoy shopping. Check some good website design examples, and you’ll see that the convenience measures they include make things better for the customers more than the business.
Building a website from scratch and aiming for convenience is difficult, but it may be necessary to reach your goals. Customer convenience remains an important driving factor for customer loyalty, and the need for convenience stretches back decades.
There’s one thing that every great customer service representative has in common – a genuine commitment to providing a friendly service. Having a customer-friendly attitude is one of the most important things in customer service. You know that customers are an integral part of what you do and sincerely appreciate how they choose you for their needs. This sincerity forms the basis of an excellent customer service experience that ensures customers always come back.
Communication is key for any customer service representative. It doesn’t take a long time to talk to someone and establish a relationship with them. A positive relationship can be made in an instant. The downside is that a negative relationship can be created just as quickly.
Imagine how you would feel if you were stuck waiting for a representative to pick up the phone, only for them to be rude when they answer. You wouldn’t be happy about it, and neither would your customers. 60% of consumers say they would avoid businesses and brands if they had an unfriendly customer experience.
The basic rule is “service with a smile.” Treat customers with the respect they deserve, and they should return that respect to you. Hire a website designer who understands the importance of friendly service, and they will create your website around a core of friendly customer service.
Customer service is more important than most businesses realize. It also encompasses more than they might expect. While it’s vital that your customers have a great experience in your store and dealing with employees, they should have just as good a time when using your website. You need to consider customer-friendly service when putting together a website design for your business. Your website needs to be quick, responsive, and easy to use.