What is customer experience?
Customer experience is about how a customer feels during and after interacting with your brand.
Hubspot defines customer experience as the following:
The best way to define customer experience is as the impression you leave with your customer, resulting in how they think of your brand, across every stage of the customer journey.
Year by year, customer experience has become increasingly important to businesses.
This is due to the rise of smartphones and technology — and how easy it has become for customers to interact with brands and businesses.
Customers are engaging with brands on multiple channels like email, SMS, social media, website, and etc. As a result, omnichannel marketing has taken the front seat.
Customers also very likely to be engaging with a few brands at the same time. Therefore, excellent customer experience is what will set one brand apart from the other.
How will all these changes affect you and your business? What do you have to do to keep up?
Prediction #1: Customers will be smarter
Like we mentioned above, the takeover of technology and smartphones have made customers smarter.
Before they even interact with a brand, they can already go online and read up all about it. They already have access to reviews and information about your products and services. They can already make comparisons with similar products and services out there.
According to Shep Hyken, customers won’t just be comparing you with your direct competitors, but to the best service they have ever received.
“Customers’ expectations for service and CX are set by the best brands. They don’t compare businesses only to their direct competitors, but to the best service they have received from anyone, anywhere,” says Shep Hyken.
“The gap between what the customers expect and what they actually get is widening for some companies,”
If you want customers to spend money on you in 2020, then make sure you start working on closing that gap between customers’ expectations and what you’re delivering.
Prediction #2: Customers will walk away faster
We’ve already established that customers are smarter with the help of technology.
They are able to compare your brand with your direct competitors and other brands that they have come to contact with.
Therefore, they are also quicker to walk away from you if they don’t get the expected service.
In fact, 52% of customers are willing to pay more to get a better customer experience.
“Customers are smarter about customer service and, as a result, are willing to find the companies and brands that meet – or exceed – their expectations,” says Shep Hyken.
Moving into 2020, you do not have the luxury of second and third chances. You need to get it right the first time.
Prediction #3: Omnichannel will become more omnipresent
Omnichannel are the multiple channels that customers can use to connect with your business.
Today, there are many ways that customers can get in touch with a brand they are interested in. It can be done via phone call, Whatsapp, Facebook messenger, chatbots, and so on.
Companies have to make sure that all their channels are integrated, helpful, and saying the same thing.
“The Northridge Group’s “State of Customer Service Experience 2019” report indicates that while the phone is still the most frequently used channel of communication, the preference for digital channels, such as online chat and email, is increasing.
Alternative ways to communicate – multiple ways – will become more normal than ever,” says Shep Hyken.
Read more about omnichannel marketing here.
Prediction #4: AI customer support will get better
Artificial Intelligence is taking over 2020 – there’s no doubt about that.
AI powered solutions have been slowly transforming the way businesses work – and they are set to do more in 2020.
AI can help improve and facilitate different aspects of your business, which includes providing good customer experience.
For example, AI powered chatbots can have a conversation with customers and help them solve a problem.
AI powered bots can also provide support 24/7 – which is a huge plus for businesses.
Digital market moguls project that by 2020 more than 85% of all customer support communications will be conducted without engaging any customer service representativesMaruti Techlabs
“More and more companies are recognizing the power of convenience to drive repeat business and even customer loyalty. In 2020, more companies and brands will find ways to create an easier experience. This is good news for customers!” says Shep Hyken.