80% of customers say they don’t get an excellent customer experience from most brands.
This is a real issue for companies since four out of five customers also say they’ll switch to another brand after one negative experience.
In this sense, customer experience is crucial to your bottom line. If you’re not providing a top-notch customer experience, consumers simply go elsewhere.
If you want to drive sales and keep hold of your customers, it’s time to implement a CX strategy that shows your customers you care.
Read on to learn the CX best practices that show your brand is a cut above the rest.
Why is Customer Experience (CX) So Crucial to Sales?
Customer experience or CX refers to the way in which your brand interacts with your customers throughout the buying journey.
This encompasses everything from how easy it is for the customer to make a purchase to how comprehensive your support is.
Essentially, your customer experience is the measure of how satisfied your customer is with the experience they receive when dealing with your brand.
Here’s the thing.
If you’re not providing a slick experience that meets customer expectations and provides tip-top service, you’ll see lower sales revenues.
This is because buyers make purchasing decisions based on the customer experience they receive. In fact, 94% of consumers are more likely to purchase from brands whose customer experience they rate as ‘very good.’
Not only that, but consumers actively reject companies that can’t keep up. Research shows that 80% of customers will switch to another brand after just one bad experience.
It’s worse than that, though. A bad customer experience won’t only lead to fewer sales; it also leads to disgruntled customers and overloaded support staff.
While 63% of CX managers say that their company is prioritizing CX more now than it did a year ago, this doesn’t show in the results. At the moment, average weekly support requests are up 20%, and 68% of customer support agents report feeling overwhelmed.
This shows that despite their efforts, brands are still failing to understand what customers want from a brand experience.
If you want to boost sales and meet customer expectations, read on to learn the most important CX best practices to amplify your customer experience.
11 CX Best Practices to Boost Sales Online
Looking for ways to improve your CX strategy to increase your sales revenue? Focus on these best practices to refine your customer experience and set yourself apart from competitors.
1. Provide omnichannel customer support
To put it plainly, high-performing companies have omnichannel support.
This means they have a seamless customer support experience across all channels. Customers can move between platforms without having to repeatedly explain their issues.
To 43% of consumers, it makes them feel like an individual when a brand recognizes that they are the same person across multiple touchpoints.
To improve your omnichannel customer support, you want to give customers the chance to speak to support agents on the channel that best suits them at the time without sacrificing context.
To do this, you need to make sure that your customer service agents can access each customer’s history so they can contextualize the conversation.
That way, customers don’t have to continuously repeat themselves or share the same information over and over. It also means that support agents won’t offer the same solution more than once.
Use a process infographic to align the support team with the customer journey. This will help the team better prepare for the customer’s needs.
2. Create a comprehensive self-service help center
There’s nothing more annoying than when you want a quick answer to a question about a product, but you can’t find it. That’s why one in five brands added a help center in the last year.
Your brand's knowledge hub or help center works as a tool for customer retention.
Firstly, it keeps existing customers satisfied. If a customer needs help with a product or service quickly, they can head to the help center for a self-service solution without having to contact the company.
A searchable knowledge base can also serve as a place to educate existing customers on how they can get the best from their product. By offering helpful articles, videos, and resources, customers can learn how to take advantage of extra features.
By keeping your existing customers happy, you reduce the risk of them switching to a different brand.
What’s more, new customers can make more informed purchasing decisions by heading to your knowledge hub or frequently asked questions (FAQ) page. In this sense, a help center is also a good tool for encouraging new customers to choose your brand.
That said, 65% of brands don’t have a searchable knowledge base, and only 15% of brands have an FAQ page.
If you want to set yourself apart, make sure you have a comprehensive, searchable knowledge base to answer all customer questions.
You can even add these resources to your blogs and sales pages to offer extra value to potential customers.
See how SoftwarePundit does this in the middle of its SEMRush review:
3. Build a strong customer onboarding program
85% of customers that start onboarding don’t complete the experience. This means you’re losing 85% of your potential customers before they’ve even signed up.
This is because customers have certain expectations for the onboarding experience.
Customers expect the process to be convenient, intuitive, and personalized. They expect minimal data entry and no electronic signatures. If customers have to key in too much data, they take this as a hurdle to onboarding.
51% of customers say they simply get frustrated if the process takes too long.
46% of customers drop out of the onboarding process if there’s a poor user experience.
One important user experience feature is a mobile onboarding option. If there’s no option to onboard using a mobile device, customers see this as a barrier.
To improve your customer onboarding experience, you need a quick, seamless experience that makes it easy for customers to sign up without having to do too much work.
Make the process easily accessible, giving options for mobile and desktop sign-up. To reduce data entry, try allowing customers to sign up using their Facebook or Gmail account details so they can onboard with just a few clicks.
4. Design an intuitive online sales process
Just like onboarding, customers want a sleek sales process that’s uncomplicated.
65% of consumers say they want to buy from companies that offer quick and easy transactions online. If your sales process is clunky or your procedure takes too long, customers will abandon their carts.
Map out your customer journey to understand what a customer needs to do to complete a sale. Look for bottlenecks in that process that slow down the workflow.
An important aspect that you’ll want to improve is the navigation of your ecommerce website. This will ensure that your site feels intuitive and straightforward to use.
For example, try adding breadcrumbs to orient your visitors. These are small text signposts that indicate where the customer has come from and where they’re headed next.
For instance, clothing retailer Asos shows customers where they came from with a string of categories in the top bar.
Make sure your navigational elements are clear and simple on your website and that they’re uniform throughout the whole experience. That way, customers can move through the process using their intuition.
Even your digital sales touch points can be made effective with simple intuitive designs and the use of appropriate call-to-actions. You can even create QR codes linking to gated content, social media pages, or your product purchase pages for easy and effective access.
5. Respond to online reviews
Online reviews can give you a good insight into how your customers feel about your company.
On the surface, this provides you with first-hand feedback to improve service and product quality management.
But reviews aren’t just a tool for one-way feedback. Replying to reviews shows customers that you take their experience seriously.
Despite this, 75% of businesses don’t respond to any of their reviews. Of those who do, they only reply 20% of the time.
This is a waste of an opportunity.
As it turns out, if you don’t reply to any of your customer reviews, you’ll earn 9% less revenue than the average company.
However, if you jump in to give personalized responses to more than 25% of your reviews, you’ll earn 35% more revenue than the average brand.
In this respect, reviews are a top way to improve the customer experience while fueling revenue growth.
6. Personalize the customer journey
Nowadays, 63% of consumers expect personalized service as standard. Despite this, 40% of consumers say that brands don’t meet their personalization expectations.
The problem is that if you’re not offering personalized services, you’re missing out on customers. In fact, 37% of people say that they won’t do business at all with a company that doesn’t personalize their customer experience.
On the flip side, 78% of companies that have a full or partial personalization strategy experience revenue growth.
There are a number of ways to personalize your customer experience, including personalized discounts, best call center software services, communications, rewards, recommendations, personalized mass emails, and more.
52% of consumers say they want individualized offers from brands, while 38% say that when a brand sends personalized recommendations based on previous purchases, it makes them feel like an individual.
In this sense, it’s smart to use customer data to make recommendations and offer discounts to customers based on their preferences.
It’s also wise to work on personalizing your customer service. Research shows that customers are most loyal to brands that use personalization in their customer service departments.
7. Improve the mobile experience
In recent years, there’s been a 30% year-on-year growth in mobile shopping, making the mobile experience more important than ever.
In fact, mobile traffic accounts for 65% of all ecommerce traffic. Plus, 53% of all sales come from mobile devices.
With such a large portion of profits coming through mobile devices, it seems ludicrous not to focus on improving mobile CX.
After all, 40% of shoppers will judge the positivity of their experience based on how simple the mobile buying process is.
In particular, it’s important to make sure your ecommerce experiences are mobile responsive. This means that the elements of your website or app can downsize to fit proportionately to mobile devices.
What’s more, you need to ensure that your mobile buying experience is fast.
Look at BMW, for example.
By focusing on improving the speed of their mobile site, BMW boosted organic traffic by 22%.
8. Create an attractive customer loyalty program
A killer loyalty program attracts more customers and drives revenue.
While lots of companies focus on trying to net new customers, it’s a whole lot smarter to concentrate on keeping hold of the ones you have.
After all, 45% of brands say that 20-50% of their revenue comes from loyalty program members, while one in five brands say that 50% or more of their revenue is attributed to this group.
When companies have good loyalty programs, customers feel like they’re getting bang for their buck.
On the one hand, this means they’re more likely to stick around and buy more. Research shows that 79% of customers are more likely to stay with brands that have a good loyalty program and two-thirds of consumers modify their spending habits to maximize loyalty benefits.
On the other hand, customer loyalty programs help you get new customers through referrals — 73% of consumers are more likely to recommend brands with good loyalty programs.
There are plenty of different ways to offer loyalty rewards to your return customers. While 45% of companies use loyalty points to retain customers, you can also try offering exclusive merchandise, free gifts, free shipping, early access, and bonuses.
Look at Old Navy, for example. The clothing brand tries to net new and return customers with Old Navy coupons and cashback.
9. Train up a proactive customer success team
Maximize the value of your existing customers by training up a proactive customer success team who can help your customers get the most from your products.
The customer success team contacts existing customers to find out if they need help with their products. They also educate them on how to use those products to their maximum capacity.
By speaking directly with existing customers, your customer success team has the chance to identify opportunities for upselling and cross-selling. This helps provide more revenue while boosting the customer experience.
In the SaaS industry, for example, 44% of companies say they get more than 10% of new revenue from upselling and cross-selling, while 40% see a year-on-year revenue increase of over 20%.
To help your customer success teams get results, make sure they’re well-equipped with access to data on customer buying history and purchasing behavior. 30% of companies say the biggest hurdle to driving repeat business is they don’t have a full grasp on customer data.
In addition, especially in a remote work environment, periodically host webinars internally to better train your customer success team in an effort to get them all on the same page.
Remember, though, if you’re collecting, storing, and sharing customer data, you need to make sure you’re compliant. If you’re sharing customer data between your customer success teams, make sure your data center monitoring strategy is up to scratch.
10. Use customer service chatbots
Nearly 20% of companies, such as Legacy Healing Center, chose to implement a chatbot last year as a means to boost customer service.
Whether added to your website or social media accounts, a chatbot is an effective way to direct customers to get the help they need without burdening support teams.
In fact, chatbots are highly effective customer service agents. They can learn up to 92% of visitor questions in just five months.
Bear in mind that there’s been a 110% growth in the number of customers who prefer to use social messaging to reach brands. In this sense, it’s a smart idea to add a chatbot to your social media pages.
Chatbots don’t just help by offering support. They also boost sales by recommending products and offering personalized discounts.
Research shows that chatbots boost sales by an average of 67%. Plus, 26% of all sales start through a chatbot interaction.
When you consider these figures, it’s clear that chatbots are a clever way to drive sales while scaling support without having to significantly increase the size of your support team.
11. Leverage customer service tools
It can be tough to keep your customers happy across all your different platforms. You’re not alone in feeling this way — 61% of brands say it’s hard to manage the number of customer touchpoints they have.
Try using customer service tools to help you do this. Simply put, high-performing support teams use more workflow tools than low-performing teams.
For social media support, you can try using tools like Salesforce Social Hub or Crowdbooster.
You can also try Helpscout as an email support tool and TalkDesk for phone support.
If you’re looking for an omnichannel tool that supports phone, email, social media, and your website, try Freshdesk or Zendesk.
If you want an easy way for customers to schedule meetings with your support team, try using Harmonizely.
It’s no longer enough to provide top products at a low price. Customers expect a seamless end-to-end experience from the moment they first interact with your brand.
It’s important to remember that customer experience strategies not only help you drive sales from new customers but also help you upsell and cross-sell to existing customers.
Customer service tools are a great way to lighten your load while boosting the customer experience. If you need a tool for booking customer support appointments, try Harmonizely today.