Archive for General Information

The Importance of Consistency in Customer Service

Pleasing Customers Increases Customer Satisfaction by 20% and Revenue by 15%

 

 

When it comes to customer service, consistency is key. One of the most important considerations for customers in choosing a particular brand is consistency in service delivery. A survey conducted by McKinsey & Company across 14 different industries concluded that pleasing customers with the expected level of quality increases customer satisfaction by 20% and it also helps the company increase revenues by more than 15%.

It is critical to understand that winning customers and building loyalty takes time, and that in order to build good customer relationships, you need to deliver consistent service if you are to retain your customer’s hard-won loyalty. This is put nicely into perspective by the fact that customers, on average, will tell less than 10 other people about good service they have received, whereas the number is closer to 20 when it comes to letting people know about a bad experience.

Why is consistency valued so highly among customers?

Maintain Quality & Reliability

Consumers expect the same kind of quality each time they make a purchase or acquire a particular service. Customers base their expectations on their previous positive experiences, so it is the company’s responsibility to deliver the same level of services or beyond to ensure customer satisfaction. Consumers must be guaranteed that the products and services being sold to them will live up to their expectation and the product description.

 

Relationship Building & Emotional Consistency

The only way to build long-term relationships with customers is to offer dependable products and service. Being treated as a valuable customer both before and after a sale is of vital importance. In fact, to ensure repeat sales and customer loyalty, it is important that interactions with customers are consistent and quality based. The greater the emotional connection between your customer and your business, the higher the customer loyalty. After all, nothing is more trustworthy than consistency.

Obviously, no enterprise is perfect, and customers understand that. However, they are more likely to forgive an occasional misstep, provided the problem is handled quickly and with care. What customers will not tolerate is any kind of rudeness, neglect or failure to deliver on promises. This is put nicely into perspective by the fact that customers, on average, will tell less than 10 other people about good service they have received, whereas the number is closer to 20 when it comes to letting people know about a bad experience.

 

Communication

No matter how many loyalty programs a company offers, it won’t be able to win loyal customers until and unless the company offers consistency in communication. Communication with the business customers’ needs to be effective, to the point, and periodic. The only way customers can be expected to invest their money, time and effort into a product or service is through free and open interactions. To be able to successfully communicate at each customer touch point, strategies need to be developed for different areas of communication. These touch points can be appropriately used to strengthen the relationship with the clients and communicate all the relevant information in a timely fashion.

Furthermore, you can conduct online surveys and invite customers to provide feedback on their experiences with your organization, in order to learn what is most important to them. Once you are aware of what the key issues are, you can fix them immediately. In addition, monitor customers on all their social streams to catch praise or dissatisfaction, both of which you can learn from.

In addition, always provide clients with a time frame for expecting your response and consider setting up automated responses to incoming client emails, to ensure nothing falls through the cracks.

 

 

Customer Journey

Businesses should also keep in mind that it is not just the product or service that needs consistency, but the overall customer journey, which includes pre-sale engagement, actual sale and after sales services. The combined total of all these interactions with the company make up the customer journey. Customers who have all the control in the competitive industry are very perceptive and they pay attention to every little detail, which means that the company can’t afford to compromise on any component of customer journey. Customers expect the same level of service quality during each stage of the customer journey. If a company consistently pays attention to detail and offers high quality services, it would result in long term relationships with customers.

We found that a company’s performance on journeys is 35% more predictive of customer satisfaction than performance on individual touchpoints. Since a customer journey often touches different parts of the organization, companies need to rewire themselves to create teams that are responsible for the end-to-end customer journey across functions.

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Move over Millennials, Generation Z is now the largest single population segment

Defining Gen Z

 

How do we define the youngest generation? Gen Z is most commonly defined as those born after 1996, divided into two groups: those born between 1997 and 2005 (The First Connected Kids) and those born 2006 to 2015 (The Technology Inherent). The oldest members of the generation are now 20. The oldest millennials are now 37.

Because members of Gen-Z are different in key ways from millennials, the demographic shift holds some implications for brands and retail marketers. According to Nielsen’s new Total Audience report, millennials and Gen-Z now comprise 48 percent of the total media audience.

Differences of gen z

While members of Gen-Z look like millennials from an overall device ownership perspective, there are a few key differences. According to Nielsen, they watch less conventional and DVR-based TV than earlier generations. They also spend far less time accessing the internet via PCs than older groups. Gen-Z spent only eight minutes per day online via PC. The vast majority of their online time is spent on mobile devices.

 

Millennials care more about prices than Gen Z

This is arguably because they came of age during the recession. Sixty-seven percent of millennials surveyed said that they would go to the website to get a coupon, whereas only 46% of Gen Z polled said they would do the same. Millennials also tend to click on more ads; 71% of Millennials in a recent poll said they followed an advertisement online before making a purchase, however only 59% of Gen Z’ers said the same.

Members of Gen-Z are more likely to buy in stores than millennials and prefer it to e-commerce, according to multiple studies. However, technology heavily influences those mostly in-store purchase behaviors.

According to a Euclid Analytics consumer retail behavior survey, Gen-Z uses mobile apps and features on mobile phones more than other demographic segments in retail stores. Texting and Snapchat in particular are much more heavily used:

The use of Snapchat is the most dramatic difference between Gen Z and other groups. More than 40% of Gen Z respondents say they use Snapchat in a store, compared to only 15% of other respondents. Texting remains the most popular activity overall, especially with Gen Z. Half the Gen Z respondents say they text while in a store, compared to 39% of other respondents. The only mobile feature Generation Z uses less than other groups is Google search.

 

 

Gen Z Is More Entrepreneurial

According to Gen Z marketing strategist Deep Patel, “the newly developing high tech and highly networked world has resulted in an entire generation thinking and acting more entrepreneurially.” Generation Z desires more independent work environments. As a matter of fact, 72% of teens say they want to start a business someday.

Gen Z Has Higher Expectations Than Millennials

Millennials remember playing solitaire, coming home to dial-up internet and using AOL. Generation Z was born into a world overrun with technology. “When it doesn’t get there that fast they think something’s wrong,” said Marcie Merriman, executive director of growth strategy at Ernst & Young. “They expect businesses, brands and retailers to be loyal to them. If they don’t feel appreciated, they’re going to move on. It’s not about them being loyal to the business.”
Gen-Z is the next generation of mass-market consumers. While they share some of the behavior patterns and characteristics of millennials, they have distinct preferences and expectations that brands and retailers must understand and address.

 

 

 

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Walmart Uses Google and Uber in Walmart-Amazon War

 

 

 

I find this Walmart-Amazon war fascinating; if you’ve read this blog, you may have read an earlier post on how Walmart and Amazon continue to try to one up each other in the fight for becoming the world’s retail giant.

It looks like Walmart is responding to Amazon’s latest purchase of Whole Foods and indicating that they will lower prices in an attempt to “change the face of grocery shopping.”

They are planning to partner with two big name companies, namely Google and Uber, to expand their service offerings.

First, they are testing grocery delivery via Uber in Denver and Orlando currently to see if this could be a new offering. In the past, Walmart has tried various other options, including considering the use of their own employees and, more interestingly, their own customers (this one never saw the light of day of course).

More interestingly, they are also partnering with Google to provide streamlined online shopping. The first step will begin in September when Walmart’s items are available for purchase via Google Express. In the long term, they are hoping to be able to offer online purchasing through Google Assistant or Google Home, similar to Amazon Echo.

The moves are interesting. On one hand, Walmart could be starting a new phase with their delivery – Ubereats turned UberMart or UberRetail perhaps – or they could not be successful at either of these new ventures and be seen worldwide as the ones who continue to chase Amazon and never really catch up.

Walmart is a retail giant, no doubt, but I believe Amazon is still the stronger of the two. However, Walmart definitely has its sights set on Amazon and seem to be working quickly to catch up and possibly pass them by.

So it seems the Walmart-Amazon war continues, and for now Walmart seems to be making headway. We’ll keep an eye on these new developments and wait for the next move in this retail game of chess.

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