If customers feel ignored, insignificant, uninformed, left out or even rejected at any point during the customer experience with your business, even if it’s a misunderstanding on their part or unintentional on yours, it could well be a big problem for your business.
When it comes to the customer experience, are you simply ignoring your customers?
The article “Do Your Customers Feel Ignored?” on neurosciencemarketing.com reinforces the belief that people’s purchasing decisions are driven by emotions, and that for most, logical reasoning only enters the process at the point where an individual wants to rationalize or justify their decision. Customers who feel ignored may experience negative emotions about your business, even if the product or service they purchased was satisfactory.
5 ways to stop ignoring your customers during the customer experience.
1. Stop being so “pushy!”
In business, all too often we focus on all of the information that we are pushing out on the internet, in email newsletters, on in-store signs and displays, in advertisements and so on. Many of these customer points of contact can easily be turned into channels of two-way communication to provide you with feedback about the customer experience and to ensure that customers don’t feel ignored.
2. Stop assuming.
You cannot afford to assume that the individuals with the majority of interpersonal contact with your customers realize the emotional impact they relative to the customer experience. Train, and retrain, every employee who has in person or online dialogues with customers to use active listening techniques, relay comments, complaints and suggestions and respond to customers as quickly and positively as possible.
3. Stop waiting.
Don’t wait for customers to complain, ask them if anything about your business or their customer experience could be improved. Use surveys, focus groups and other means of gather feedback from your most important customers (if not all of them).
4. Stop thinking that “no news is good news.”
If customers aren’t providing you with positive reviews and constructive feedback, chances are you are not engaging them emotionally. The last thing you want is for customers to be indifferent about your business!
5. Stop settling.
Explore the customer experience your business provides from end to end. Dissect and analyze every customer touch point and constantly look for ways to improve the customer experience with your business. Hire professional secret shoppers to give you feedback about how it feels to be one of your customers.
Compared to your competitors, you may in fact have the best products or services around and you may offer them at the best value for the money. If this is the case, and if human beings made purchasing decisions based on logic, then based on logic, people should be queued up to buy your products and services and they should be telling their friends and family all about your business.
But people don’t make buying decisions based on logic. People make purchasing decisions based on emotion, and then justify their preferences with logic.
Perceived employee indifference is noted as the number one reason shoppers will stop patronizing a business (cited by nearly 70 percent as the reason for leaving). Note, that is perceived indifference – it may not even be reality! Logically, if an individual received a satisfactory product or service at a satisfactory price, whether or not they thought an employee didn’t care about them should not impact their repeat buying decisions.
But, again, people don’t make repeat buying decisions based on loyalty; and they definitely don’t develop loyalty to a brand or business outside of the emotional payoffs they receive – including the way doing business with an organization makes them feel. It is the customer experience that determines loyalty and referrals, not product satisfaction!
“Today, more than ever, buyers want to feel involved with what they purchase and use, and they want to know that the seller is listening to what they have to say.” —Nick Nanton and J.W. Dicks, writing at Fast Company online
If customers feel ignored, insignificant, uninformed, left out or even rejected during the customer experience with your business, even if it’s a misunderstanding on their part or unintentional on yours, it could create a big problem for your business.
Given today’s savvy consumer and their propensity for sharing negative – and positive – reviews and referrals with their friends and family and the public at large on social networks and review sites, it’s critical that business owners understand the role buyer emotion plays in the customer experience.