I obsess over my customer's experience. How a customer feels about your brand comes down to a few key elements. Customer service, customer engagement, and operating with your customer's perspective.
As a small business owner, it is so easy to think that you know what is best for your customers. It is your business, right?
I mistakingly believed this as well, until one of the products I launched did not go well. I had been running my eCommerce brand for 4 years at that point and was quite frankly cocky.
What went wrong? I did not take my customer's perspective in mind. I thought, well I know what my customer wants. This was a humbling moment in my business, that truly helped me let go of my ego and embrace my customer's perspective.
Your business would not exist without your customers: Listen to them!
My typical product launch strategy includes asking my email list what product they would like to see launched. I typically start with a simple plain text email asking customers which product should we launch first A or B.
This simple conversational type email provides authentic feedback and builds a customer relationship and overall customer experience that goes far beyond, "where is my order?"
This authentic ask email method is really effective when you have a long-term view of your business. If you don't want to customer service team to have these conversations with your customers, I would challenge you to change your perspective. Your customers want to be heard, let's listen to them and build a stronger relationship.
Continuous improvement from customer feedback (product reviews to build a new product)
The goal for any new product is to make it the best product for my customers. To do this, we use a continuous improvement methodology. When typically a product for 2-5 years depending on our market share. Since we sell 100% direct to consumers, we get direct feedback from our customers as product reviews.
We can go through these reviews and see if there are any product performance improvements we can make. These trends can be really powerful for making micro improvements to an already great product.
This takes our direct customers' needs into account for anything new. The goal is to continuously improve to make a higher quality product each time. This is easier said than done!
Actionable daily tasks you can do for your customers (This will be your competitive advantage)
Fast response time
Solve a customer's request in your first reply back
Do the unexpected to wow them
Take customer feedback to improve product quality
Use the customer's perspective in every meeting (from customer service, operations, and marketing)
Measure your customer satisfaction with a happiness score and set a specific goal to hit
Document customer needs and reviews them monthly
Review customer objectives and try to solve them
Have a customer strategy meeting that only talks about the customer and their point of view
Thank new customers for their orders (I love to have my customer success team send custom welcome videos)
The first step to better service is simple (have a tangible target to hit)
Measure and improve. Every company has a baseline for customer service. By simply measuring that baseline, you have a starting point and target to beat it.
Here is an example of an internal process perspective:
Target: Happiness target score 92 or higher
Action: If the happiness target score is below 92: We review all "NOT OK" replies and email them. This shows customers we actually care and will provide us with any issue trends. You can also review your internal customer service team to see if any specific employee needs help as well.
Action: If the happiness target score is over 92: No action is needed.
Align your incentive with your goals: A great way to improve this score is to align your team's incentive. We will occasionally assign an incentive to hit a higher happiness score like a 95. It is amazing the different ways your team members can wow customers when their incentives are aligned with outcomes.
I recently wrote a blog post about going above and beyond for a customer. You may get some additional best practices to implement to wow your customers over and over again. Customer experience is a game of consistency.
What is the best way to integrate your customer's perspective into your business?
Let me know in the comment section below.