What happens when good isn’t good enough? Can it be enriched to become great? What happens when an everyday interaction is pushed to become a spectacular experience? The result can shake up the market, increase customer loyalty, and be a powerful communicator for your brand.
Let’s look at principles that can help create such an experience:
- Smart simplicity
- Trust through transparency
- Customer connection
One of the first principles to creating a great customer experience is to make it easy. Customers crave simplicity, but on top of that they want a seamless experience that’s empowering. Online shopping has come a long way in the last few years. It is now easier to order almost anything online right from your desk. But there’s still that hesitation among shoppers: Will it fit right? Are the colors true? What if I don’t like it?
Warby Parker tackled these issues head on when they launched their e-commerce only eyewear venture. Aware of the hurdle of not being able to try on glasses in a store, they created the Home Try-On program. You select five pairs and have five days to try them out. The result was an avalanche of signups. Consumers loved the idea of trying out several pairs of glasses, getting feedback from friends or family, and then making a decision.
Trust through transparency
Another approach to improving your customer’s experience is to become more transparent with the process in general. Domino’s tapped into this pretty early with their online pizza tracker. You can watch the preparation and delivery process from start to finish, and even see the driver’s name who is en route to your home.
Companies that have more recently taken this a step further are delivery services like Postmates. You order food or supplies from just about any store in your area through a convenient app on your phone. Next you’re paired with a Postmate, getting a real-time look at who is picking up your order, where it is in the process, and when it’s going to show up. It takes the guesswork out of when your delivery is going to show up or if it’s going to be right. Offering this glimpse into the process establishes a sense of trust from your customer. Not only that but it keeps your customer engaged in the transaction, adding more value to your service.
Even with simplicity and transparency, always remember the power of a personal connection. In today’s times inserting that lost element of humanity can have a huge impact on your business. Consider the taxi industry. It’s been around for centuries, and although the transportation has improved, the connection to customers has fallen off. Once you finally manage to hail a cab, there’s really no connection between driver and rider. It’s become very impersonal.
One company that has disrupted this model is Uber. They employ the same basic cab operation, but shift the focus back to the customer. It’s not about transportation or even the destination, it’s about the people. Even Uber says they are in the business of “moving people”. The experience comes from that connection to real people, driving their own cars and interacting with others. Think how many times you’ve sat up front with an Uber driver or had a great conversation home from the bar.
Careful consideration of these principles and a desire to improve your customer’s interaction with your brand can create a unique and lasting experience. From there you’re far more likely to gain devoted, long-term customers who will sell your brand over and over as a one-of-a-kind experience.