Customer Experience vs Customer Service: What’s the Difference and Why It Matters
Happy consumers are willing to pay more for a product or service if they have a positive experience with a company. So, how do you keep customers happy?
What matters more—customer experience or customer service? Both. Both customer service and customer experience matter when providing excellent interactions with your customers. To gain a more accurate image of both, let’s cover the basics of customer experience vs customer service and how it can help you win more customers.
Why is Customer Experience Important?
While you will find there are many variations of it, here is the customer experience definition used here: Broadly speaking, customer experience is the customer perception of both direct and indirect interactions with your organization throughout the entire customer lifecycle. From browsing information on your website, interacting with support or sales reps, or using your products, every interaction matters to defining a customer experience journey. As complex and broad as this concept is, there are basic practices to ensure your customers have an impeccable experience.
- Reduce steps: For example, customers that want to purchase a product from your company or have a support inquiry solved, want to undergo a streamlined process. Eliminating unnecessary steps and overly complicated processes from their interactions with your brand is crucial to provide the experience they want and most importantly, eliminate frustrations and potential delays. Equipping your teams with adequate tools, like Sugar Serve, for support requests, will contribute to providing the high-definition customer experience (HD-CX) you aim to.
- Seek opportunities: A customer experience (CX) platform allows you to streamline internal processes, enabling you to facilitate interactions with your brand and even anticipate customer wants and needs. Predictive analytics can even help you identify new marketing opportunities, allowing you to tailor more relevant messaging for your potential customers. By eliminating marketing interactions that do not correspond to your customer base’s interest, you have higher chances to gain their loyalty.
- Branding mindfulness: It may seem small but branding consistency helps to solidify your customer perception during interactions. Brands that have a consistent image are perceived as more together by customers.
- Metrics matter: Customer experience management is mostly based on customer feedback. Pay attention to information gathered by different channels: marketing automation tools, salesforce automation software, and customer service systems.
- Work together Achieving customer experience excellence is the duty of everyone within your organization. To increase visibility, use technology to facilitate your organizational efforts and lessen the heavy load of repetitive tasks.
Customer experience matters to your brand because consistent positive interactions with your brand are due to consolidate your position in the marketplace, increase loyalty and trust while building strong relationships with your customers. Improving CX also matters to brands because of recent market trends. Customers’ expectations are quickly evolving, and to meet those, brands must focus on designing positive experiences and identifying and addressing critical pain points across the customer journey.
How is Customer Service Different from Customer Experience?
Customer service is a support team’s assistance in solving customer problems before and after a purchase happens. Generally, consumers are more likely to continue collaborating with a brand if they have positive customer service interactions.
Customer service matters because it can help organizations retain customers and obtain valuable customer relationships. A long-term advantage is that it lowers customer acquisition costs by solidifying existing customer relationships and elevating their chances to become recurring customers. This translates into cultivating a loyal following base with multiple purposes in consolidating your brand image. You can use your newly acquired customer base to gain referrals, study as case study scenarios, and gain verifiable testimonials and reviews. Some other added benefits of seamless customer service for your organization are listed below.
- Retaining customers is more affordable than acquiring new ones by 25%.
- Customers pleased with the customer service received are likely to spend 67% more with your brand.
- Customer service can consolidate your brand image and can stand proof for your vision, mission, and values.
- Positive customer service leads to increased CX.
Here’s how to improve the quality of your customer service:
- Meet SLAs: Service level agreements or SLAs are the levels of service customers expect from a vendor. To ensure proper service responses and interactions with your customers, you have to keep your SLA timeframe as low and reasonable as possible. For example, if a customer cannot access or properly use a software product, your company must solve this inquiry within a reasonable timeframe. Automation can help you achieve this goal by streamlining workflows.
- Multichannel reach: Not all customers prefer the same communication methods. Utilizing varied communication options provides improvements to the customer service standard.
- Leverage technology: Simple and flexible workflows and processes are important to standardize customer service and elevate customer experiences. Find a tool that allows you to manage your internal processes directly within your business systems.
Customer experience is important, but rather than a showdown of customer experience vs customer service, they work together to keep customers loyal and continuing their relationship with your organization. These concepts both matter equally in ensuring that your customers have positive interactions with your brand, meeting their expectations and needs. Designing a positive customer journey is reliant on both customer service and customer experience. By understanding this dynamic, your brand ensures that customers are met where they need, how they need.