With the social and economic disruption brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is fair to say that the customer experience may not be front of mind for many businesses right now. The main business worries now are profits, bottom lines, salaries, expenses and just keeping your business afloat.
As the novel Coronavirus forces people into a digital-only way of life, businesses need to give virtual experiences with a human touch. People and brands have an emotional component just like any other relationship. Your business’s relationship with customers is built over time, nourished by experiences along many online and physical touchpoints in their journey, grounded in expectations, and confirmed through repeated interactions.
What is Customer Experience?
Customer experience is the impression you leave with your customer, resulting in how they think of your brand, across every stage of the customer journey. (HubSpot 2020)
Why is Customer Experience Important?
It is important to ensure your customers get a positive customer experience since this helps build brand loyalty and affinity. (HubSpot 2020). A positive customer experience equates to the retention of customers and earning new ones.
Today your customers are probably going to be seated at home on a mobile phone or a laptop, bored, restless, and maybe looking through different websites or even shopping. How can you improve their experience?
Research from Gallup shows that engaged B2C customers “return a 23% premium in terms of share of wallet, profitability, revenue and relationship growth over the average customer,” and that engaged B2B customers lead to 50% greater revenue, 34% higher profitability, and 63% lower customer attrition.
“Just like you, your customers are enduring massive upheaval,” wrote Jennifer Robison, a senior editor at Gallup. “They’re making difficult decisions too: who can be trusted, who will help make things better, who keeps their promises. And when this crisis is behind us, as it surely will be, customers will remember the brands that satisfied their rational needs and those that genuinely met their emotional needs during a very tough time.”
For many businesses around the world, Covid-19 is proving to be a stress test for their customer experiences. Businesses must thus strive to minimize disruption and support customers more than ever; this means keeping your customer experience front and center of your marketing and communications strategy.