By Anurag Kedia
Digitalisation, e-commerce, or social commerce – every advancement in technology is directed towards one thing- seamless customer experience. Customer experience is everything a consumer perceives and feels about a brand at each touchpoint. According to a study by PwC, 65% of consumers find a positive experience with a brand to be more influential than advertising. For brands like us, where so much is at stake at every touchpoint, seamless customer experience is the best way for building customer loyalty which in turn has time and again proven to bring more sales and revenue.
However, a “seamless experience” can have a different meaning for consumers even when interacting with the same brand. As a new-age brand, it is our responsibility to identify the right medium for each consumer. For some, personalisation and human interaction are crucial while others may want little or no human intervention in their consumer journey. Customising the path for each consumer can sound daunting however, with such advanced technology at our disposal, the task is becoming more approachable. Also, when you compare it to the benefits, it is only right to do so. After all, a happy customer becomes a brand’s biggest advocate. Satisfied customers turn into loyal customers thus bringing in repeat sales. Also, positive word-of-mouth has proven to drive brand awareness and directly impact purchase decisions for generations.
A consumer interacts with brands through various channels – websites, social media, e-commerce platforms, and with some, even brick and mortar stores. For any brand, irrespective of the industry, it has become essential to build an omnichannel customer experience to ensure the time and energy consumers spend during an interaction is not wasted. An omnichannel experience allows consumers to continue the experience right where they left even on a different channel. This helps brands create enhanced value and proposition in the minds of their consumers. When consumers consider your offering to be valuable, they do not shy away from paying the right price for it. Hence, in highly competitive industries, omnichannel experiences the biggest competitive edge for brands. It also helps you build a symbiotic relationship with your customers thus becoming a reason why they decide to buy your product over your competitors.
Community engagement and delight programs
A strong and connected community surpasses all brand tactics for increasing customer lifetime value and retention. The brand community or engagement arena becomes a ground for consumers to not just speak to the brand but also to connect and offer value. One of the most common methods of driving brand community is through loyalty/ delight programs. These programs, when implemented in the right manner help brands in keeping their valuable customers connected and loyal to the brand. These customers in return spend more money, offer insights and bring along more customers thus driving in more sales, revenue, and overall value for the company. Loyalty programs can also become an invaluable place for us brands to understand our consumers’ requirements and preferences which we can further turn into our new offerings.
Other factors driving sales
Any company, whether new or established, makes every effort to increase sales volume since steady growth is the only way to stay afloat in the market. Apart from a seamless customer experience and a great product, there are internal factors that can drive sales for our brands. Factors like building the right marketing strategy by selecting the right target market, brand positioning, price, and distribution methods can have a significant impact on a product’s sales. Also, optimising personnel, technology, and automation of business processes can make a significant impact. As a brand, we must take into account the technological advances available for our disposal and leverage them to mark our presence on different e-commerce platforms our target consumers are present on to reach the right people at the right time.
The author is co-founder, and CEO, Pilgrim