Did you know that it takes 12 positive customer experiences to make up for 1 negative experience? Or that 89% of customers have stopped doing business with a company after a poor experience?
Customer experience is critical to your retail brand’s long-term profitability. You can’t afford to upset and lose customers for fixable reasons. Customer service is a critical part of your customer’s experience, but it’s not always taken seriously.
In this post (featuring an excellent infographic via Salesforce), we’ll discuss the importance of setting customer service goals to improve your customer experience and build a profitable company.
Customer Experience is a Differentiator
In a world with unlimited choice and unbounded competition, it’s difficult to differentiate on price and product selection. Providing an exceptional customer experience will make you stand out. It’ll help you profit from the 70% of Americans who say they will spend more somewhere that provides a better customer experience.
In 2015, many retailers are investing in their customer experiences in order to stand out. And, a huge part of your retail customer experience is your customer service.
See the infographic, below, for a ton of great statistics about the impact of customer service on your business. But, before you can make investments in improving customer service, you need to set goals.
Impact of Customer Service in Retail
Customer service has a huge impact in retail. Zendesk performed a study to investigate the impact of customer service on the bottom line. Here are a few of the findings that are most relevant to retailers:
- 42% of B2C customers bough more after good customer service, 52% stopped buying after bad service.
- 88% of those surveyed had been influence by an online customer service review.
- 95% share bad customer experiences with others; 87% share good ones.
And, consider some of these findings (also in the infographic):
- A 10% increase in customer retention levels result in a 30% increase in the value of the company.
- 55% of consumers would pay more for a better customer experience.
- 45% of US consumers will abandon an online transaction if their questions or concerns are not addressed quickly.
No matter how you spin it, customer service will have a significant impact on your retail business’s the bottom line. Excellent customer service isn’t just a nice-to-have. It’s a requirement of profitable, lasting businesses.
Tips for Setting Customer Service Goals
Customer service doesn’t just happen by accident. Like any business strategy, you must set goals and build strategic initiatives around it.
- Map out your customer journey. What path do customers take from awareness of your brand all the way through repeat purchases? Where along that journey does customer service play a critical role? (It won’t just be servicing existing customers.)
- Define key performance metrics. What metrics indicate the quality of your customer service? How do they vary across the customer journey? Here are some ideas to get you started.
- Communicate your goals. If your entire organization isn’t clear on the goals, they won’t be able to achieve them. Make sure you communicate clearly and accurately to everyone, including those who aren’t in direct customer service roles.
- Evaluate the right tools. Customer touchpoint technology like ticketing systems and call center tech are important. But, don’t forget about the back-end systems (order management, CRM, etc.) you need to give your customer service team the information they require.
- Look at the big picture. Yes, customer service is about individual touchpoints, in many ways. But, it’s also about the big picture through the customer journey. Don’t optimize individual scenarios at the expense of the holistic experience.
Remember that through every interaction with your customers, your customer service team is essentially a marketing channel. They impact first-time buyers. They impact repeat buyers. They can upsell and close sales.
Setting customer service goals helps to make customer service an organizational imperative for your retail business. It makes sure everyone is on the same page, working toward the same objectives.
The Impact of Customer Service (Infographic)
This infographic, from Salesforce, shows the impact of excellent or poor customer service. Also, check out our white paper about improving customer loyalty with customer experience.