The desire for companies to create meaningful relationships with customers can’t be overestimated. And businesses are going to great lengths to ensure 2021 is the year they show that the customer is king.
As consumers, we are constantly confronted with systems that make it easier to do business. But robot-based customer support systems that don’t understand what customers want or take 15 minutes to navigate the menus are horrible experiences. From a B2B perspective, how can you make customer support a seamless and pleasant experience that builds meaningful brand loyalty?
To prepare for the evolving customer expectations in 2021, consider the following ways to improve your end customer’s experience.
Guided Selling And Configuration
Guided selling is a tool that helps the user select the right set of products and services by taking into account the customer’s needs. Guided configuration then kicks in to assist the user in properly configuring these products and services while respecting product dependencies and other constraints. If you enable your sales reps to do that quickly and seamlessly, you improve the customer experience.
Your goal is to offer value to your customers. Once you have selected and configured a set of products and services meeting your end customer’s needs, optimize pricing so that you don’t over discount and instead preserve your margin. At the same time, you please the customer because they think that they got a fair deal. The key is to match the right price with the right product — and with the right customer expectation.
In the spirit of improving the customer experience, let’s talk about proposals. If you generate an estimate or a proposal, it needs to be clear, concise and verifed for accuracy. In the B2B world, purchasers always verify the math. If you don’t provide the necessary information for your customer to verify the quote’s accuracy, you will not make it easy for customers to do business with you.
Let’s be honest. If a customer doesn’t have to talk to a sales rep, they won’t. In fact, they may prefer not to talk to anybody for basic transactions. If you can provide a smooth self-service experience that includes selecting, configuring and pricing products, your customers will not appreciate it but enjoy it. The more intuitive you make this experience, such as using the same guided selling and guided configuration concepts I mentioned earlier, the more your customers will think that it’s easy to do business with you.
Self-service allows customers to do tasks faster than calling and waiting on a sales rep. As such, that customer enjoys a better buying experience. It also means it’s easier for that customer to deal with you, the supplier, because customers can handle it on their own.
So much of the customer experience relies on perception. And that means small additions to serve the customer better create a big impact on the overall experience. As your business prepares for the buyer’s journey in 2021, incorporating guidance in product selection and product configuration, transparency in pricing, and self-service will provide an experience that customers enjoy and builds brand loyalty for years to come.