It seems only yesterday that major businesses claimed product quality was key to getting more customers. Now, the numbers are out. And an even more important factor has emerged that has contributed to the success of many entrepreneurs and establishments both online and in the real world, and that is customer experience.
We’re not saying you just wasted countless hours coming up with the perfect product list for your wholesale business. On the contrary, we think that was time well spent. After all, without a product, there would be no customer, and ultimately, no customer experience.
In this post, we want to share with you some very powerful facts on how customer experience can make or break your wholesale business. These are the reasons why retail giants like Amazon and Apple are so obsessed with providing the best customer service possible. This is also why they continue to be among the most well-loved brands in the world.
What is Customer Experience?
The most commonly-held definition of customer experience is the overall interaction between the customer and a company or brand. This interaction may include customer awareness, cultivation, discovery, purchases, services, and more. For the sake of this post, however, we’ll be addressing the aspect of customer experience that matters most to you as a wholesaler: customer service.
The way your customers perceive how you treat them is called ‘customer service experience.’ If you’ve ever walked into an Apple store (and we bet you have!), you’ll notice how the employees always talk so enthusiastically about the products.
Apple store employees don’t sound like employees. They sound like people who are sincerely passionate about the products AND the brand.
This quality of service results in millions of loyal customers and over 18 billion in revenue per year for the electronics company.
Statistics that Highlight the Importance of Customer Experience
As the owner or manager of a wholesale business, it’s important for you to understand and invest in the customer experience. Essentially, it is the new battlefield where companies try to outshine the competition with the superiority of their service.
We’ll enumerate here the ten facts about customer service we found the most compelling:
- 78% of consumers bail on a transaction or intended purchase because of the poor customer service they experienced.
- On average, a loyal customer can be worth up to ten times as much as the value of their first purchase.
- 3 out of 5 surveyed American consumers are willing to try a new brand just to get a better service experience.
- Looking for new customers is 6-7 times more expensive than keeping a current one.
- Bad customer service experience reaches more than twice as many ears as praise for good customer service.
- Almost 9 out of 10 surveyed American consumers are willing to pay more just to get better customer experience.
- On average, it takes 12 positive experiences to make up for one unresolved problem encountered by a customer.
- Over a million people view tweets about customer service weekly. About 80% of those tweets are negative or critical in nature.
- Only 1 out of 26 customers give feedback about their negative experience to the company. Most of them will choose to do business elsewhere without saying anything.
- By 2020, customer experience is expected to take precedence over price and product quality as the key differentiator for businesses.
Yes, it’s THAT serious.
Creating an experience that truly impresses consumers and exceeds their expectations translates into more business for you. You don’t need to drop prices, come up with new products, or give away discount codes to use on check out. The customer experience is the edge you need to skyrocket your wholesale business.
Just consider the fact that people are willing to PAY for better service. Offer it to them at no cost and you’ve earned a customer for life!
Quick Tips for Improving Your Own Customer Experience Strategy
It’s an age-old edict that applies beautifully to any and every kind of business. Make sure that expectations are surpassed or, at least, consistently met.
Let critical feedback be your guide
Customers may complain about the smallest of things, but make sure to act on them when they ring true. They may not be the first ones to encounter the problem so make improvements where necessary.
Be honest with your customers
Sometimes all they really want is for someone to give it to them straight. If records clearly show that their package is lost, don’t beat around the bush or tell them, “It’s probably just delayed. Please wait for a few more days.”
Make them hear your smile
A neutral experience with a customer can be turned into a fantastic one when they can hear you smiling on the other line. Also, a lot of people find it hard to get angry at someone who greets them in a cheerful way.
Treat every customer interaction as a referral opportunity
When you make a customer feel special, they are sure to brag to at least a handful of friends and family members about how competently you handled their concerns. This is a golden opportunity for small businesses to increase awareness and attract new, loyal customers.
Create “Wow” experiences
One tried-and-tested way to increase customer retention rates is by creating fast and easy solutions to common problems. If it takes other businesses five minutes to resolve the issue, do it in less than one.
So, what are you waiting for? If you think your customer experience strategy needs work, or if you don’t have a strategy in place yet, then there’s no better time than now to come up with a master plan that will blow the competition out of the water!