A CRM alone will not help you improve customer satisfaction. The right strategies implemented through that CRM are the real key to unlocking more customer-centric, streamlined processes and insights. In this post, we’ll discuss factors that contribute to customer satisfaction and a few ways that CRM can help increase those satisfaction rates.
Factors That Contribute to Customer Satisfaction
We are all customers to someone. So, what do you expect when you
make a purchase or use a service? You want to feel as though that business
understands your needs. You want to be offered products and solutions that are
relevant to you. You want the process to be easy and transparent.
Customer satisfaction is gauged by a hybrid of many factors. Let’s discuss a few of the biggest ones.
Quality of the Experience
Did you delight the customer? Anticipate needs? Answer questions promptly and politely? The experience of making a purchase has a lot to do with the customer’s satisfaction.
The hardest part of providing a quality experience is recognizing that each customer’s satisfaction is a unique combination of objective (facts) and subjective (feelings or opinions) factors. It’s a balancing act – and not one that you’ll get right every time. That’s why understanding your customers’ personas and behaviors is so important.
Some customers will prefer to reach out via social media. Others may choose to engage with your website chat, and still others (like my mother!) will prefer the old-school approach of picking up the phone. Meeting your customers on their chosen channel makes your services more accessible, which helps provide a more seamless sales and service experience.
However, if you’re providing omnichannel options, it is absolutely critical to understand that your customer expects their information to cross over between those channels. If they speak to someone about an issue via chat, they expect that the next time they call customer service, that interaction is referenceable. More about this important factor can be found in the next point.
If your customers are going to enjoy the freedom of connecting with you via their preferred channel, you must ensure their information is following them between those channels. Nothing is more frustrating than having to repeat the same information to different departments. In fact, HubSpot recently found that 33% of customers are MOST frustrated by having to repeat themselves to multiple reps. Make the cross-channel connection to avoid this customer satisfaction pitfall.
Research has shown that online conversion rates can increase by roughly 8% when the customer has a personalized experience. Relevant discounts and coupon codes, product-specific tips and tricks, and targeted newsletters are all examples of personalized content that can be used to create a distinctive experience for your customers.
Providing the Complete Package
More than 70% of consumers value speed, convenience, helpful employees, and a friendly service manner the most when interacting with a company, according to PWC. In that same document, they note that “Those who get it right prioritize technologies that foster or provide these benefits over adopting technology for the sake of being cutting edge.”
This is a perfect segue into the conversation around CRM and
customer satisfaction. Let’s discuss how CRM can help you hit the mark on these
customer satisfaction factors and provide above-and-beyond customer experiences
across the board.
How CRM Helps Increase Customer Satisfaction
How can a CRM solution help meet the needs and challenges of customer satisfaction? Here are just a few of the ways it can aid in these efforts.
Personalizing the Experience
Without any customization or added functionality, most CRM
solutions will offer the ability to save emails and notes into customer contact
records. This is a great start to building a comprehensive profile of the
customer that can later be used to create personalized experiences. However, the
full scope of the customer’s interactions, preferences, past purchases, and support
requests are what will build the complete profile. The ability to access and
report on that information from within the CRM provides the necessary
perspective for personalizing the customer experience.
If you’re using omnichannel communications, those channels should be integrated with your CRM to feed the data into a single source of truth. Information like purchase orders, chat histories, social media interactions, and support data can be funneled into the CRM to reveal the bigger picture about your customer’s behaviors and inform the marketing opportunities that best fit their persona.
Providing Proactive Customer Service
Automation is one of the biggest benefits of CRM tools. Automated responses offer proactive communication and keep customers looped into what’s going on, which helps them feel their time is valued. These responses also provide a unique opportunity to share helpful information relevant to the interests of that customer. So, while they’re waiting for your response to their recent request, they can peruse your FAQ page or knowledgebase to gain some clarity on their own.
Proactive customer service shouldn’t exist solely for support
requests either. The best way to maintain a proactive approach is to regularly
contact the customer throughout their lifecycle. For example, payment
reminders, relevant promotions, and shopping cart alerts are all examples of ways
you can proactively service your customers.
Better Management of Customer Purchases
Using a CRMs in-depth reports, you can gain a better
understanding of what your customers are interested in. These findings can
inform upsell and cross-sell opportunities, help segment customers for specific
promotions, and show trends in customer behavior.
The CRMs automated workflows can also help your reps stay on
top of customer purchases for more proactive follow up. The CRM can assign a
task to the team member so they remember to follow up with the customer one
week after their purchase.
If the CRM is integrated with other business applications,
that rep will be able to further personalize that follow up by referencing social
media interactions, email open rates, chat conversations, and other data to
inform their perspective on what else the customer may be looking for. For
example, if the rep can see that the customer clicked on a product link in an
email but has yet to purchase, they may choose to offer the customer a discounted
rate to entice them to take action.
Resolving Issues & Avoiding New Ones
A CRMs help desk ticketing system can be a powerful tool for quickly resolving customer issues. This is especially important when 90% of customers rate an immediate response as “important” or “very important” when they contact customer service.
- Internal teams can prioritize and assign tickets
to the correct departments for faster issue resolution.
- Notes in the CRM can help those who weren’t
involved in the issue resolution understand what happened so they can avoid the
issue in the future.
- Reports on issue response times can reveal
patterns and customer service gaps.
- Logged phone calls and emails can shed light on
the interaction and the insights drawn from those interactions can be used as teachable
moments for other representatives.
Customer satisfaction should be the ultimate goal for any business. The value of a happy customer is exponential, as these individuals are likely to share their positive experiences with at least 11 other people. A CRM system acts as a single source of truth for all departments within your organization. Whether sales is referencing a contact’s email history, services is gaining insights on a past issue, or marketing is looking for analytics on purchases, a CRM helps make sense of your data so you can improve customer satisfaction and foster stronger relationships to last a lifetime.