Do You Know What Consumers Want?
In our last article, we discussed the practical applications of Mark Hurd’s Insights into the Customer Revolution. It was clear that the motto, ‘the customer is always right’ has never been truer than in the era of e-commerce.
You are in direct competition. Not just with other local businesses, but also with every other company that offers goods or services anything at all like yours. Your customers, should they be dissatisfied, have the option of patronizing organizations on the other side of the country—or the other side of the world.
If, as Hurd suggests, only 1% of customers are always satisfied and 89% of dissatisfied customers will immediately take their business elsewhere, your margin for error is a slender one indeed. Yes, when you make a mistake, the new model advises that you address it immediately; before you lose a customer, before you receive a negative review on a social media site, and before your mistake pays off for your competitor.
But how much better would it be to avoid making that mistake in the first place?
If you’re going to invest in your business, invest in customer service.
The best advertising is still word of mouth! Satisfied consumers share their positive experiences with friends and family. That’s why we all jumped on the social networking bandwagon in the first place – to leverage this kind of free publicity. But now we’re paying for it, and finding that buying social networks is no different than any other kind of advertising.
No. Rather than spend money trying to convince potential customers that we can provide the experience they desire, we should invest in making their experience a reality.
According to CEI, “In return for a great experience, 86% of consumers say they’ll pay up to 25% more.”
Look at those numbers. For a Zappos-level satisfaction, the majority of your customers are willing to spend a lot more.
You already know that for a garden-level disappointment, a large number of them are willing to run to your competitors and badmouth you online. The solution is simple. Get off that merry-go-round by investing in the shopping experience, which, to the modern customer, is of equal importance to the goods or services they’ll receive.
- Beautify your website
- Simplify your ordering process
- Improve your customer service
- Update your payment choices
- Offer convenient and dependable shipping
- Anticipate problems before they happen
Above all, make your company reliable and accountable. Reduce the incidence of complaints by living up to your customers’ expectations and you’ll find it money well spent.