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3 Keys to Meet the Needs of Today’s Digital Consumer

Today, companies of all sizes are failing to understand the needs and wants of their customers, a common mistake that can impact future sales and growth. And with more and more options at our disposal, customer loyalty can be fleeting, which is why companies must do everything in the digital consumer’s power to remain top of mind.

Indeed, today’s digital consumers have the whole world at their fingertips — and companies that fail to adapt to ever-changing expectations and desires will get left behind. In order to win over customers and keep them coming back again and again, you’ve got to give them what they want — how they want it.

Nowadays, that means having a bona fide online presence and offering the ability to shop, make payments and seek out customer support through a seamless digital means. Ultimately, there’s a whole book to be written about the different and evolving strategies to keep pace with today’s digital consumer. But the following three factors are among the most critical. Keep these in mind and you’ll be able to not just survive — but thrive — in the modern marketplace.

1. Everything Mobile

Customers are increasingly looking for fewer “online” services and instead more digital offerings. Today, “mobile” is the name of the game, and if your company isn’t easily accessible via a smartphone or tablet, you may as well not exist.

Without this level of accessibility, your customers may very well decide to shun your online storefront altogether, especially if they have to waste valuable time navigating through your clunky, desktop-centric website. Instead, they’ll simply decide to conduct business elsewhere. That’s why your website must be fully responsive to mobile connectivity — and it wouldn’t hurt to develop have an app to compete.

While some industries, like the energy and construction sectors, might be able to get by using strategies from the early 2000s, others certainly need to get with the times. Whether you work in retail, law enforcement, publishing or auto maintenance, your best bet is to invest in tools that will make your business easy to find and interact with via a smartphone.

2. Omnichannel Support

The days of companies turning to an 800-number to deliver customer support are over. It’s 2017, and more and more people would rather do, well, just about anything else than call a customer support line and wait on hold. Instead, they want the ability to quickly pose questions or concerns to support agents via online chat and/or social media.

In the customer support world, your ability to provide omnichannel support will become increasingly vital to attract — and retain — younger generations of customers. While such a strategy can be deployed internally, it’s often easier and more efficient to partner with a cloud contact center.

Leading contact centers are also adept when it comes to giving customers the ability to first seek out assistance via online chat or social media and then easily follow up to provide answers over the phone or through email. Ultimately, let the experts handle customer care so you can devote your time and energy toward executing a business model that will provide more opportunities for success and growth.

3. Consistent Experience

Today’s customers value consistency over virtually everything else. Case in point: When a consumer hands over their hard-earned money in exchange for services or goods, they expect to receive some type of inherent value. It’s a key reason why so many people prefer the ease and comfort of online shopping versus visiting a brick-and-mortar storefront as well as ride-sharing services like Lyft and Uber over a traditional taxi.

This principle applies to not just the ease of the transaction, but also the entire experience customers have with a particular business or company. For example, if it took you less than five minutes to make an online purchase, your hope is that future transactions will take the same amount of time — if not less — and include some type of incentive to keep you coming back.

This makes tracking customer analytics increasingly important. Ideally, any company should strive to provide the same quick and easy shopping experience to all its customers; after all, the more a business can predict and then adapt to what a customer desires on each subsequent visit, the more comfort and satisfaction they will feel about the overall experience.

A grocery store, for example, could make the shopping experience more efficient and satisfying for its customers by offering a delivery service platform that can recall their most frequent purchases. Chances are shoppers aren’t always in the market (no pun intended) to purchase a new brand of orange juice or cereal, so make it easy for them to locate their preferred choices with a simple click when they open your app.

Ultimately, by maintaining solid customer analytics and delivering consistent customer service, companies can come to better understand their customers — which will save both parties time, money and frustration.

Posted on October 24th, 2017 by Rachel Braam, Office Manager

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