The old adage “the customer is always right” has never been more true than in today’s technologically advanced world. Customers have information and statistics at the tips of their fingers with the press of a button or the click of a mouse. Businesses have to work harder to stay competitive in the eyes of tech-savvy consumers. Here are five important ways that technology is changing the face of customer service:
- Technology Has Increased Consumer Expectations: It only takes a quick Internet search for customers to discover whether or not they’re getting a good deal. If they feel undervalued or misled, they know they can easily take their need for an honest sales conversation to another eager establishment. Retail experience optimization demands that establishments display transparency, thorough knowledge and efficiency during every step of the sales transaction. Today’s customers know that they have lots of choices available to them and they don’t have to tolerate anything less than the best.
- Consumers Have Less Patience Than in Years Past: With services such as high-speed Internet, instant messaging and overnight delivery, consumers have become accustomed to immediate gratification. They don’t like to wait and if they are compelled to do so, customers are likely to develop a low opinion of businesses or services that haven’t figured out how to optimize their speed of operations.
- Consumers Expect Accuracy: With spell-check software and the ability to literally cut and paste information from one place to another, customers have little patience for misleading typos or other such glitches during sales transactions.
- Consumers Expect Information Integration: Advanced software systems and the Internet have made it possible for so much consumer information to be aggregated into easily accessible customer accounts. Customers expect to share their information just once. They’ve come to rely upon the fact that their contact information, payment preferences and purchase history can and should be used to create a more streamlined and efficient checkout process whenever they shop.
- Consumers Feel More Empowered Than Ever: The rise of social media has not only made the retail space more social, it has proven to consumers just how powerful word of mouth marketing is. Consumers are aware that the opinions they share with their followers on various social media outlets carry a lot of weight in terms of driving business (or not) to retail establishments. The wise retail business owner takes the empowered consumer into consideration when setting up best practices for optimizing the customer experience from the beginning of the sales process to the end.
To learn more about the best ways to identify, evaluate and address the necessary growth areas in your business’ overall retail experience strategy, contact us.