“The more advocates you have,the less ads you have to buy.”
– Dharmesh Shah, founder and CTO, Hubspot
One of the best things a customer can say about your business is, “It’s so easy to do business with you!”
But, do you really know what it’s like to be your customer? There are countless touchpoints in your customer’s journey to doing business with you. Each step is either simple or challenging for the customer.
Challenges are the friction points that create negative customer experiences. It’s important to be aware of friction points, so you can make adjustments and provide the best customer experience.
Empathy Is Key to Understanding Customer Experience
Empathy is simply putting yourself in someone else’s shoes. When you view your customer’s experience with empathy, you see it from their perspective. Empathy reveals what works well and what doesn’t. It allows you to better understand customer needs and desires and anticipate them.
How to Explore Customer Experience
The easiest way to understand what it’s like to do business with your business is to become a customer. This can be you, or it can be an employee or a trusted advisor or friend who will be honest with you.
The person performing this exercise can document key positive or negative moments with notes and/or smartphone photos and videos. Documentation captures all the details — good and bad.
For example, if your customer buying experience is online, you might take a screenshot of a menu that is confusing. Or if you are picking up a purchase via curbside pickup and find there is no place to park, you might realize you have not provided customer instructions on what to do. A quick photo of the parking lot will remind you that you need to address that in your communications to customers ordering curbside pickup.
Be prepared for big discoveries and consider them opportunities to fine-tune your process. If there’s any point in the process you found challenging, imagine what it might be like for your customers! On the other hand, if you identify touchpoints that leave you with positive feelings, look for ways to reinforce those moments and see where else you might inject them into your process.
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