By Dennis Fois, CEO of customer engagement specialists Rant & Rave

Customer Experience is a widely used term in almost every organisation but not everyone considers it as a priority; with research from Harvard Business Review showing that only 45% of professionals view Customer Experience Management as an important strategic priority.

But that needs to change, and now.

Customer Expectations of a brand are ever increasing, and companies can’t just differentiate themselves by offering lower prices anymore, as research from Oracle suggests that 81% of customers are willing to pay more for a better Customer Experience.

But why now? Well, business has changed a lot in the last 100 years, we’ve gone from the age of manufacturing, dominated by industrial powerhouses, to the age of distribution and the age of information, where the dawn of the internet has given consumers the power to do everything at the click of a button.

Now firmly in the age of the consumer, brands have found themselves with little power at all.
No longer can brands rely on their prices, quality or reviews to grow and retain customers. Instead they need to focus on giving their customers the best Customer Experience possible.

So how can brands ensure that they’re offering the best Customer Experience possible? Here’s three tips to get you started:

1. Utilise Mobile

It’s fair to say that mobile is a powerful device; there are more than 6 billion in the world and, on average, we look at them 110 times a day. So doesn’t it make sense for brands to make the most of mobile to enhance their customer experience? Especially when 61% of customers say that they have a better opinion of a brand when they have a good mobile experience.

2. Use Proactive Communication

Customers are won and lost in real-time, so it’s important to keep them informed and engaged throughout their customer journey.

Brands can do this by sending their customers timely, relevant and personalised updates at key moments of truth.

This makes things easier for your customers as well as freeing up your Contact Centre resource as you won’t have customers calling in to check on their order, find out when their appointment is or just request an update or information.

3. Use Customer Feedback

What’s the point in keeping your customers engaged throughout their journey if you’re not going to close the loop and ask them what they thought of their Customer Experience? The only way you can ensure that your efforts to improve the Customer Experience are working, is if you ask your customers what they thought of their experience.

If you want to go one step further, offer a multichannel approach to collecting customer feedback so you allow your customers to have their say through whichever channel is the most convenient for them.

This not only shows that you’re listening, but it enables you to improve processes, save at-risk relationships and, most importantly, turn your Ranters into Ravers!