Customer satisfaction (CSAT) is the marketing term, which measures how a product or a service meets customer’s expectations. CSAT became one of the most popular terms among marketers and they do believe this is a very important and precise indicator. The idea seems obvious: a satisfied customer is a loyal customer, isn’t it? But in practice, it’s not so clear. According to statistics, businesses that hardly focus on CSAT improvements still have a churn rate of 60-80% even if customers were satisfied or very satisfied according to surveys. So, as you can see, CSAT isn’t very good loyalty indicator.
You may ask if the customer satisfaction is so useful as everyone says? And how to measure it right to avoid “empty” numbers?
The answer to the first question will be “partly”. Of course, customer satisfaction rate won’t solve all your problems, bringing you millions of sales by itself, but it can definitely help you to increase the level of customer experience. The main detail about customer satisfaction, which explains why it’s not enough to convert a satisfied client into a loyal, lies in the name itself. Satisfaction is the lowest border of compliance with customer’s requirements. And reaching this borderline may guarantee that your customers won’t spread a negative word of mouth about the brand, but that’s all.
As for the proper mechanics of measuring and using CSAT stats, we listed a few common mistakes, which prevent business of making a full use of it:
1. Focusing only on the rational mind
It’s a well-known fact that emotions are the main reason to make purchases. And it seems like many of marketers, obsessed with rationalization, don’t use this knowledge. Striving to put everything in the strict frames, which are easy to analyze and understand, they create the parallel reality. One, in which people are treated as customers, leads or consumers – whoever you want, except people, and their decisions are indicated by numbers and charts. But the truth is that a rational mind pops out only to legitimize some actions, which are already done because we don’t control our emotions, but they do control us. So by concentrating on features, better conditions or product improvements, without building an emotional contact with the client, you most likely wouldn’t develop strong relationships with your audience.
2. Choosing wrong means
The main stereotype about CSAT is the brand’s desire to provide a “new level of service”, which should hold customers and make them loyal in theory. But the missing detail is that “a new level” can surprise only once because after the first experience it becomes a new standard. It could catch the client, but it can’t hold it. So these tactics are nothing but endless race. It means that customer satisfaction rankings can be very unreliable because the client still may switch the brand if he wanted to try something new or spot a better proposition.
The only things which can increase the loyalty are constant qualitative service and emotional contact with the audience. It’s a fact that for long-term relationships a clear communication, well-qualified support or fast shipping are much more important than, let’s say, special price.
3. Analysis without purpose
Many businesses have one big problem – weak cooperation between departments. It often happens that results of different branches are used solely only for quarter reports, while the gained knowledge isn’t applied for the sake of a business improvement.
The second problem is that employees which are responsible for the communication with customers don’t get right directions. Data gathering, analysis and planning are made by marketers, researchers and other office workers, but clients make their opinion about the brand through the communication with different people: sales consultants and shop assistants. We all know that if the waiter or call-center consultant was rude or not helpful, you most likely will never use their services, no matter how strong their reputation or positioning is. So it’s vital to make sure that all your departments work due to a general strategy and create the image of the company on every level.
If you want to know more about developing an emotional contact with the audience, read our latest article about the Content Improvement to build a stronger brand.
How to ensure high customer satisfaction in eCommerce?
In 2017 eCommerce sales are expected to reach nearly $450 billion in the USA. In today’s world customers have more platforms, ways and options to buy online than ever. On the other hand, their attention span is getting shorter and shorter. It takes only 4 seconds for a customer to leave your site if it doesn’t download fast enough or couldn’t hold his attention. Actually, this span is even shorter than of a goldfish (9 seconds), but even a fish wouldn’t wait for 9 seconds when it comes to online sales.
So, to hold your customer and increase the chances of successful purchase you should stick to these steps:
1. Make sure you know your customer, not pretend you do
According to SalesForce report 72% of consumers consider the “understanding of their needs and expectations” as the most important reason to become loyal to the brand.
The most effective way of reflecting customer’s needs in eCommerce is providing product recommendations through different communication channels. For example:
- Send an abandoned cart message aiming to encourage customer buy products he left in the cart. Considering the previous experience on the website, a customer can finish his purchase since he doesn’t need to remake all choices and re-add products, but rather only buy what he already chose.
- Send transactional emails which include personal product recommendations based on the transaction. Statistically, these emails have more than 80% of open rate. If the message and recommendations are personalized enough, then the conversion rate can reach 25%, which is huge.
- Pre and Post purchase product recommendations on the site. People need guidance and help during the shopping process. By providing them good matching products you will increase the loyalty and possibly can sell more since they are already in the “buying mood”.
2. Let your website functionality empower clients, not restrain them
Top-notch website design needs to have a perfect balance of customization, expertise, exhortation, and convenience to fulfill the customer’s needs and expectations. In the age of rough competition and globalization, it will take only few mouse clicks to strike a deal with your more agile and client-centric competitor.
To avoid this you need to search for missing details, which need to be added to your online business. By taking into consideration specialties of the business area and characteristics of your target audience you can improve your site significantly. For instance, it could be such invariably useful features as:
Price comparisonSites, which have this feature, are getting almost 20% extra traffic. If you are open and competitive with your prices, don’t be afraid to let people make sure of it by themselves. Herewith, by doing this you significantly increase chances of selling your product even if the price isn’t the smallest. Of course, if you will manage to properly explain why it’s worth the cost.
Product CustomizationThis is just a “Win – Win” situation both for you and your client, when he/she have an opportunity to customize the product due to own needs. It often happens that customer doesn’t fully satisfied with the product and want to make minor changes, as color or shape. He may also need some more than the standard product can offer and don’t want to bother himself buying it be piecemeal. Customization will resolve these issues, leaving you richer and the customer satisfied and a little bit more loyal.
Product FilteringAs statistics shows every 3rd website has a poor filtering system, which discourages clients of buying, and what could be worse for an online shop? I am sure that each of us knows that feeling when you try to set the filters up and after a couple minutes leaving frustrated or pissed off with complicated and confusing site filter system.
3. Make your cart surprisingly enjoyable, not unexpectedly annoying
Not sure if you know, but average cart abandon rate in 2017 is almost 70%. By saying it is huge, I wouldn’t give a tenth of the idea how big the percentage is. Of course, nearly 60% of abandoners state that the main reason is that they are just searching and don’t ready to buy now, but if we make a math it comes that 3 of 10 of your customers leave the 1st step before the purchase because of the poor and frustrating cart.
3 most important reasons to abandon, not counting unwillingness to buy are:
- Extras are too high – 61%
- The necessity to create an account – 35%
- Too long and complicated process – 27%
Even more, 22% of shoppers would abandon the cart wasting too much time trying to match desires of other family members or friends.
So, based on this information we can make some conclusions:
- It’s vital to be clear and transparent with pricing policy because unexpected extras are the biggest problem for the customers.
- It’s good to make 2 options for buyers, one for new customers who don’t want to create an account and just want to make a single purchase and for existing clients who can login or create an account.
- Also, it’s important to make the process as easy and fast as possible. For example, One Step Checkout for Magento or any similar extensions will simply solve this problem.
- Make a shareable cart with the opportunity to create permalinks to simplify the process for your family, because it’s always better to show than to tell.
That’s only a few pieces of advice which will help to set the better level of customer satisfaction and loyalty. If you want to improve your business and receive a comprehensive audit and support just contact our specialists.