Why customers are prepared to pay more for good online experiences

by Shannon Ash
Wed, 22/07/2020 - 16:21

Think about it; the digital market is flooded with a ton of “sameness”. 

...you know, acceptable customer experience. But nothing to write home about. 

If a service is, to be frank, useless, your customer will jump ship to another brand. Unfortunately for business owners, consumers can do that – they can make an impulse decision to seek convenience elsewhere. And the brands being booted in the process are losing out, simply because they don’t know what their customers want (or need) in real-time. To put it into perspective, “77% of consumers say inefficient customer experiences detract from their quality of life.” In addition, “56% agreed that they would share their negative news with friends and family, while a third (32%) would post on social media and 39% said they would never use the brand again.” That’s a lot of pull for a bad experience. 

But considering the library of digital tools available to help marketers understand their customers’ buying behaviours and interests, businesses can no longer afford to deliver poor customer service. 

Especially now, during the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). As of late, online shopping has skyrocketed, and communities are coming together to share their online experience. Consumers’ expectations are at an all-time high, so downplaying the importance of exceptional customer service is no longer an option. Your customers’ happiness should be your main priority.

Okay, but what is good customer experience? 

Essentially, it comes down to a feeling; the hook. It’s how a brand makes you feel. It’s the way a customer perceives you, interacts with you and recommends your offerings to their networks. 

Ironically, in an age powered by digital transformation and innovation, it’s not often that businesses leave customers feeling great after an online interaction. And now, it’s more important than ever. Customer experience is more than the traditional customer service elements you would assume, for example, price, product satisfaction, customer query handling and so forth. In digital, customer experience is everything from how a customer navigates your website and social channels to take action. And during this process, two key factors make a big difference along their journey: convenience and disruption.

Our latest Digital Customer Experience (CX) Report unpacks this topic: the rise in cart abandonment, a drop in customer retention and the struggle to gain customer advocacy. Interestingly, on a study done, customer experience goes beyond the touchpoint interaction and considers a multitude of factors. Download your copy here to find out where South African brands are sitting in this space.

Here’s how the value of customer experience can influence your bottom line:

Customer satisfaction is your promise to keep 

Many claimed “customer-centric” retail businesses still fail to put their customers at the heart of their organisation. Why? If you don’t allow your customers to steer your vehicle, you’ll forever idle at the back in a rapidly changing market space. You need to listen to your customers, for example, in our report study, “74% cited digital’s 24/7 convenience as one of the main reasons for going online.

To add to that, we noticed that “men were more inclined to pay more for good service than women, as were those in the 25 - 34 year age bracket.” And as a result, “it was notable how willing consumers were to switch between rival brands and even pay more for identical products/services if they believed the customer experience would be better.” E-commerce is becoming more demanding in the retail industry, and your overall customer experience lays with your ability to remove any path to purchase obstacles. 

Now, if you’re not investing in a multi, omnichannel approach to digital marketing, it’s humanly impossible to support customer convenience as, and when your customers demand it. Marketers need to continuously be innovating; thinking ahead of their customers. You need to practice what you preach; be the consistent, dependable service that you confidently claim to be. Monitor your customers’ engagement with your brand throughout the entire lifecycle or customer journey. And based on the insights you generate, you can provide a positive experience for your raving fans.

Opportunity to create brand advocates

When a customer is satisfied with your online service, they are likely to continue doing business with you and recommend you to their network. By listening to your customers, using the correct monitoring tools, you will be able to analyse your customers’ level of satisfaction with your brand before they communicate it with you. An unhappy customer is a powerful one, and, therefore, it’s crucial that businesses invest their time in dealing with these customers to curb negative experiences in the future. With a personalised approach, you can turn unhappy customers into brand advocates. 

Follow trends to improve customer advocacy  

Once you have developed a community of brand advocates, it is your responsibility to maintain that. Customers are turning to other customers to validate products and services before they take action, and this is where your community has the power to drive your brand. In today’s congested market, word of mouth experience has more impact than any advertising campaign. So, it’s your responsibility to ensure that your customers are receiving the information they need when they need it. Take the time to speak to a performance marketing agency that can help you adapt your user experience online, and focus on ideas to improve customer experience today. Our teams at Rogerwilco are experts in e-commerce web development, and we would be thrilled to take a look at your current site.

Final thoughts 

Relying on traditional engagement metrics to measure your customers’ experience with your online brand is not always accurate. Businesses need to stay ahead of their competitors by listening to their customers, following trends, building a community of advocates and actioning their feedback. If you’re looking to improve your customer experience for online shoppers, give us a call today!

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