When it comes to making your digital business a success, maintaining excellent customer experience is vital. If you don't, customers will take their business elsewhere on the great, wide Web.
For that reason, you should implement an omnichannel customer experience.
What Is An Omnichannel Customer Experience?
The omnichannel customer experience is, simply put, a smooth customer experience. It is a process by which customers are placed on one path from the beginning of a transaction to when they receive their purchases.
Customers don't have to check with a thousand different departments just to have one question answered. Putting customers through unnecessary channels results in the customer's frustration.
Continued frustrations result in customers finding other companies with which to do business.
How To Implement An Omnichannel Customer Experience
Implementing a successful, omnichannel customer experience takes research and evaluation. The willingness to change directions at the drop of a hat is a must-have trait.
Below are the steps you can take to ensure your business's customer experience is truly omnichannel.
1. Analyze Your Customers And Their Behaviors
Taking note of your customers and how they behave when making a purchase sounds daunting. After all, you're conducting marketing research, not writing a psychology paper.
Psychology has a lot to do with how customers make purchases. Everything from their level of comfort to their knowledge to their schedule plays a part.
For example, if your digital business is geared more towards older folks, you'll likely shy away from offering Internet-only support. Feeling comfortable reaching out via the Internet is a new quality mostly associated with younger generations. Many older folks prefer calling in and talking to someone.
In order to analyze your customers, you can use Google Analytics. Google Analytics tracks customer data, including demographics and what led customers to your site.
Additionally, you can use Salesforce or another customer relationships management system to run reports. Another tactic you may want to try is sending out surveys and feedback forms to recent customers.
2. Determine What Customers Need From You
With your reports about feedback, demographics, and the like, you can now determine exactly what your customers need. The data can suggest all kinds of desires and needs.
For example, let's say you find a high frustration level among customers who contact you to place an order.
Based on what the data says, you may need to hire more team members to provide phone and Internet support. You might have to look into the ordering process itself. It's possible you'll have to look into the service that connects orders to your warehouses.
Regardless, the data in front of you is telling you something. You only need to figure out what that is.
3. Develop An Initiative
Once you identify the source of poor performance, you must develop an initiative to improve it.
Initiatives aren't as simple as, "We'll change this one thing and be done with it." In order to make sure the initiative is working, you must continue to collect data. Surveys and feedback are the optimal method for getting this data.
If the initiative works over a period of time, you can consider it a success. If not, you'll need to re-evaluate the initiative. You'll need to find out what went wrong, propose a fix, and continue to collect data to make sure the fix worked.
If you find multiple areas that need initiatives for improvement, prepare yourself. Multiple initiatives require a bit of juggling.
You have to keep an eye on all initiatives at once. Not just because all areas need improvement, but because some initiatives could cause problems in other areas.
Even if everything seems to be running smoothly for months, don't stop collecting data.
Technology is advancing at a faster rate than ever. It is important to keep up with the new technological trends affecting the market. New trends coming up could mean a smoother customer experience if you latch on in time.
If you don't, you can be sure your competitors will.
4. Continue To Revisit and Refine
Improvement doesn't stop at the customer experience level. To keep up with customer experience standards, you have to constantly monitor your company's structure.
Nowadays, many companies need their employees to perform more than one tasks. Additionally, technological advances demand companies continuously train and re-train their employees.
In some cases, whole departments must be replaced with new ones.
Don't consider the data you gather as simply indicative of where your customer experience needs to go. Consider it also indicative of where your company itself needs to go.
5. Keep An Eye On The Ordering and Shipping Processes
The Amazon shipping model entails free shipping after you add so many items to your cart.
Additionally, Amazon works with some third-party sellers to provide free shipping on items not sold by Amazon. The model has proven itself effective, making customers feel they're saving even though they're required to buy more.
What's more impressive is how Amazon follows up on incomplete shipping. It always displays the number of items in your cart. That number is large in size and always visible at the top of the site. It is also a light orange, which makes it stick among the white and black of the site's top bar.
In other words, that number catches your eye. It makes you think about it.
Items not purchased can be sorted onto a wishlist for future purchasing. Additionally, items you've browsed--including cart items not yet purchased--frequently pop up on the homepage.
And then there is the ordering and shipping process itself. Most of the time, you need only select bulleted options when processing a transition. Rarely do you ever have to manually type in information.
It is an easy and simple yet effective model that more or less ushers customers through the ordering and shipping processes.
Need More Tips? Reach Out!
At Blirt, we understand your need to ensure you've optimized your company's omnichannel customer experience. And we want to help.
To find out more about what makes a successful, omnichannel customer experience, please feel free to reach out to us.
Does your company offer a great omnichannel customer experience? Do you have any additional tips for improving customer experience? Tell us in the comments below!