Think back to your last big purchase. Was it a new laptop to update your old, slow and laborious one that you had been working on for the past couple of years? Perhaps it was something less exciting like a lawn mower to replace the one you have been using for the past 10 years?
No matter what you purchase, there’s a good chance that during your research stage you either strongly considered buying the same brand that you already had, or you completely discounted it.
If you had a fantastic experience with your old laptop, why would you look elsewhere? You know exactly what you’re getting for your money - reliability, great customer service and a high-quality product. Even if there’s a cheaper option, you’ll probably head straight to the store and by the updated model of the same brand.
That’s because you are loyal to that company, whose product served you well for so many years.
As someone who heads up your brand’s customer service strategy, customer loyalty is something that should be top of mind. After all, it’s an absolutely crucial component of a successful customer experience (CX) and boosting profitability.
In this blog, we’re going to take a quick look at what customer loyalty is, why it’s so important to the profitability of your business and why your customer service program should focus on the three core pillars of successful customer loyalty.
What is customer loyalty and why is it important?
Customer loyalty simply refers to a customers’ willingness to interact with, and buy from, a specific company on an ongoing basis - choosing the brand over other competitors in the market.
Loyal customers are devoted to a specific brand, meaning they typically aren’t swayed by price or other factors that come into the purchasing decision. Instead, they have bought into the customer experience and trust that the brand they are loyal to is looking out for their best interest.
A loyal customer would typically pay more from a company to ensure the same quality of service and quality of product, as opposed to paying less somewhere else.
Customer loyalty occurs when a brand consistently goes above and beyond the customer experience. But why is it so important? Here are just a few statistics that show just how crucial customer loyalty is for the success of your business:
- Reducing customer churn by as little as 5 percent can increase a company’s profits by 25 to 125 percent (Entrepreneur).
- The same research found that 80 percent of an organization’s future revenue will come from just 20 percent of their existing customers (Entrepreneur).
- 43 percent of US customers spend more with the brands and companies they are loyal to (Fundera).
- Nearly three out of five consumers report that good customer service is key for them to feel loyalty toward a brand (Zendesk).
- 67 percent of consumers say they need to trust the brand behind a product or service. Having a good reputation isn't enough (Edelman).
With that in mind, how can your organization ensure its customer service program is perfectly set up to drive customer loyalty? Here are three pillars to customer loyalty that are crucial to your customer service strategy.
1 - Convenient customer service
The customer journey has changed significantly over the past couple of years. Customers want to connect with businesses on their own terms, on their favoured devices and in their own time. An omnichannel customer service offering is now key to the creation of a world-class customer experience.
Traditional phone customer service is still incredibly important, but your brand needs to offer more than just a call center.
Whether you use an in-house customer service team or an outsourced contact center to drive brand loyalty up, it’s crucial that you build a digital experience in which customers can contact you through multiple touchpoints - whether that be a website chatbot, through social media, via a brand application or simply an FAQ page on your website.
2 - Customer service that‘s designed from the outside in
Ever wondered why so many companies struggle with customer retention when they put so much effort and investments into their customer service strategies? It’s because they are building their programs from the inside out, not the outside in.
To truly delight your customers and ensure they keep coming back to your brand time and time again, you need to anticipate their needs before they even get in touch with your organization. When you build your customer service program around what your customers actually need, you’ll deliver consistently world-class customer experiences.
Take Advantage Communication’s new Conversational Q Advantage technology for example. We use this innovative software to monitor 100 percent of all customer interactions, learning about the top customer requests so we can consistently deliver the perfect response on behalf of our clients.
3 - Deliver a human experience
Behind every interaction with your brand is a real human. People are more likely to do business with your brand well into the future when you make them feel human, when your online experience shows that your brand genuinely cares about its customers.
While you can’t provide face-to-face interaction online, you can provide personalized experiences that make your prospects and customers feel valued. Contact center artificial intelligence (AI), for example, can send real-time information to customer service agents during a customer interaction to personalize the experience to a specific customers’ expectations.
Want to learn more about driving brand loyalty through a world-class customer service program? Contact Advantage Communications today. We would love to answer your questions.