A Guide To Building Customer Experience (CX) Strategy For Startups
Technological advancements have improved the way customers interact with different businesses while bringing rise to a more informed customer base with higher expectations. For any business to thrive in the competitive market, it needs to invest in customer experience (CX).
Customer experience has grown to become one of the key drivers used by customers to determine which businesses they interact with regularly. If you run a startup, part of your business strategy should focus on investing in your CX as a critical component of growing your brand.
Offering the best customer experience leads to better customer engagement. According to statistics, customers can spend up to 200% more and interact at least 50% more with a business that takes time to deliver an excellent customer experience. Providing an excellent customer experience also create brand loyalty, which helps with customer retention, a key component of growing any startup.
Here is everything you need to know about building excellent CX for your startup.
What Is Customer Experience?
Customer experience or CX is the impression a business or brand leaves on customers throughout their buying journey. It is the relationship a customer has with a brand. It helps the customer to form their opinion on your brand and business and even determines whether they become return customers or not. Customer experience can impact your bottom line and revenue stream.
People and products are the key touchpoints that determine the customer experience. The customer is interested in how a product performs and how the people behind the business make them feel when problem-solving.
Why Every Startup Should Invest in Customer Experience?
The goal of every startup is to grow fast and grow big. This takes a lot of resources and time to achieve. For startups without the budget or resources for expansion, delivering an excellent customer experience can be the gateway to accelerated growth. Customer experience is the catalyst for growth for any business, big or small. Here are reasons to prove this point.
1. Customer Experience Is a Differentiator
According to statistics, 19% of consumers only give a brand one chance of failing before they stop supporting it. This shows that one negative incident with a customer can lead to brand abandonment regardless of how long the customer has known the brand.
On the other hand, satisfied customers say they are willing to pay more for the best customer experience. This makes customer experience a key differentiator, more powerful than quality or even pricing.
2. Customer Experience Can Reduce Cacs (Customer Acquisition Costs)
As most business owners know, acquiring a new customer costs at least five times more than retaining an existing one. To acquire a customer, a business has to invest in advertising, inbound marketing, and other marketing strategies that take time and effort.
While startups thrive on attracting new customers to grow brand awareness, they should focus more on retaining existing clients. Delivering an excellent customer experience is the key to ensuring a business retains existing clients, therefore reducing the cost of acquiring new customers. Based on statistics, increasing customer retention by as little as 5% can increase profits by up to 95%. This goes to show how important customer experience is to a startup’s bottom line.
3. Customer Experience Offers Free Marketing
When customers are satisfied with the experience they enjoy from a brand, they are likely to recommend it to others. This instantly leads to an improvement in brand popularity. Delivering a great customer experience is the best way to enjoy growth without upgrading your marketing strategies.
4. Building Brand Loyalty
Running a startup is all about growing the customer base, the bottom line, and the business. Startups focus more on creating brand visibility, brand loyalty, and experiencing sustained growth. Delivering an excellent customer experience is an essential step in helping startups achieve these goals.
Investing in CX is important. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, clients who experience a good customer experience do not mind paying up to 18% more for a luxurious experience. Another study shows that at least 74% of businesses and 67% of consumers don’t mind paying more for a better CX.
5. Excellent Customer Retention
Businesses that deliver excellent CX enjoy a customer retention rate of up to 89% compared to the 33% for businesses with weak customer experience. With great customer experience, clients are likely to forge an emotional connection with the company, which improves the chances of retaining them as lifetime clients by more than 300%.
On the other hand, poor customer experience is detrimental to a business. At least 1 in every 3 customers cut ties with a brand after one bad experience. Worse still, 95% of unsatisfied clients prefer sharing their experience with the people around them, further hurting a brand’s reputation.
All these reasons show the importance of investing heavily in customer experience to survive in the market, not just for startups but for any business. This refers to the whole cycle of customer interaction, starting from the investment on things, like WordPress hosting and building a user friendly website to designing loyalty programs and retaining customers.
5 Steps to Creating a Successful CX Strategy
1. Define Your Customer Journey
From the first interaction with a brand to the thank you note a customer receives from a business after making a purchase, the entire process is referred to as a customer’s journey.
A startup has to define its customer journey map to ensure it delivers all the important touchpoints that can help the customer to achieve their goals whenever they interact with the brand. In general customer journey starts from the interaction with the company’s website, therefore its essential to always ensure that it’s user friendly and well optimized. To learn more about the steps of website optimization and onsite SEO best practices, you can check the resource here.
The best customer journey roadmap only consists of essential touchpoints placed strategically on a website to maximize engagement. Once you have all the important touchpoints, you can improve every one of them to ensure it delivers excellent CX.
For instance, if a client wants to return a product, the customer journey should make it easy for them to do so. The best customer journey touchpoint for this step would be including a return shipping label on your packages to make it easy for clients to return products.
2. Detect Possible “Pain Points” for Your Customers
Once you have a working customer journey road map, you need to identify pain points in the journey. Pain points refer to hurdles the customer experiences in their journey that may affect how they interact with your brand.
Every startup should take time to identify these pain points and improve them to improve the overall customer experience. The goal should be to deliver a smooth customer journey from the first interaction with the brand to the last point of interaction.
3. Provide Omnichannel Experience
Offering an omnichannel customer experience means taking the time to take your CX further to provide a reliable and consistent communication channel for the customer. This includes ensuring a customer can track their conversation with your business from any communication channel.
An omnichannel experience identifies different customers and the outbound communication they have open. It also identifies the customer’s purchasing patterns and history, which is important for building excellent CX on all communication channels.
4. Design Loyalty Programs
Statistics show that customers spend more than 67% on a business when they are part of a loyalty program. Loyalty programs are long-term customer retention strategies that can help build brand loyalty, which boost customer retention and customer experience.
Some of the benefits of loyalty programs include:
- Improved Customer Engagement
- Improved Customer Experience
- Reduction in Attrition Rate
- Increased Customer Retention
- Increased in Sales and Revenue
Designing loyalty programs is an effective way of retaining customers by offering more than your competition. Some of the options a startup can look into to increase their ROI on loyalty programs include incorporating behavioral and social actions like offering referral rewards and user-generated content points.
Customers are more likely to stick with a brand that gives back for every support the customer shows.
5. Integrate CRM Software into Your Business
Every startup looking to improve its customer experience and grow a brand should personalize its customer communications strategy using dedicated CRM software.
A dedicated customer relationship management (CRM) software can improve how a startup relates with the customer, improving the customer’s experience.
CRM software includes tools that help to maintain communication with the clients. They also come with tools for measuring the performance of these interactions using metrics like the customers’ interests, purchase history, product preference, and customer loyalty.
Dedicated CRM programs allow a business to build better relationships with customers while improving customer care. A business can also improve its response time with the right CRM software, which is key to an improved conversion rate.
To run a successful startup, the business must see the customer as the most crucial aspect of the business. Ensuring the customer is always happy is the easiest way to propel a startup to the next level. With the tips highlighted above, any startup can build an excellent customer experience strategy that will guarantee customer retention, improved sales as a high ROI.