How to build a Customer Centered Business?
By Trinity Hanson, Updated: 2023-03-13 (published on 2022-10-12)
Conventional business wisdom states, “The customer is always right.” But is that true? Sometimes customers are wrong, display improper behavior, or use deceptive tactics to get what they want. A better solution is to reposition your company to be customer-focused. But how do you do that? And when should the needs of the company come first? You can address both situations in ways that benefit your company. What are the benefits of building a customer centered business plan?
The Benefits of building a Customer Centered Business Plan
Repositioning your business plan to be customer-focused has many advantages, especially for up-and-coming companies. This is an effective way to build a favorable reputation and create positive brand recognition.
Other benefits include:
- Increased customer retention rates, saving you money on customer acquisition.
- Repeat customers are likely to spend more. They also recommend and share brands they love with friends and on social media, helping you build a fan base.
- Reduced negative reviews from dissatisfied customers.
- Improved ability to communicate with and serve your market.
Building a Customer Centered Business
Now that we know the benefits, how do you build or improve a customer-focused business? There are several components.
Improve Customer Loyalty
Your first step is to improve customer loyalty and retention. That means keeping your clients happy or satisfied, no matter what happens.
To understand their needs, create a customer persona. Dive deep into what motivates them to make a purchase and stay loyal to a brand. Create a customer journey map from the first interaction through final purchase to understand their experience.
Simplicity, consistency, and timeliness are necessary for all communications. Educate your clients on important processes and agreements. For example, clearly outline your refund policies upfront.
Personal Customer Contact
Next, we need to make sure that communications properly serve your clients. Customer contact should be personal. This includes a wide variety of ways to inform them, including:
- An engaged customer service department. Avoid making reps read from a script.
- Be sure to take steps to minimize phone wait times. For example, you can set up a call-back service. Live chat options when online.
- Email communications must address clients by name. They should be personalized based on email behavior and past purchases. Use a quality email provider to stay compliant with spam laws and email regulations.
- Be responsive to social media engagement, avoiding automated responses.
- Review feedback from customers to improve their experience.
Your website must be fast, effective, and easy to understand, especially the purchasing journey. An accessible user design is beneficial for your business and your customers and will help achieve this.
Accessibility can also protect your company from violating state, federal, or global regulations. A compliant user experience helps you to gain and retain customers. Additionally, usable sites have recognizable branding, helping your prospects to remember your company.
You must help users get the information they need quickly on your website. Search bars and FAQs are necessary. Use bite-sized data and images to help them understand it better.
Include Your Staff
Building a customer centered business is not limited to improving your customer’s touchpoints. A healthy work atmosphere creates dedicated team members loyal to the company and passionate about your mission.
To create a corporate culture built on excellence, and improve work quality and morale among your employees. Here’s how:
- Reduce organizational silos that cut off workers from each other to improve communication. Review structure and methods so that your staff is better connected.
- Appoint a team dedicated to improving employee morale and spreading the customer-first company vision.
- Onboarding buddies, conflict resolution protocols, team-building events, and solid project management tools are also helpful.
Remember that satisfied employees are more likely to champion your brand.
When The Customer Is Wrong
Unfortunately, no matter how customer-centered your business is, there is no getting around the fact that sometimes things can go badly. What do you do when the customer is wrong?
Refusing to serve a customer may seem unthinkable, but some cases require it. When you do, always stay in compliance with state and federal laws and regulations.
For example, if you have a storefront or restaurant, you can ban customers who are openly racist or those who smell like pot – or any offensive odors, unless the patron is disabled. On the other hand, refusing service based on sexual orientation or gender identity, while not illegal in all states, may not be a wise course of action for any business.
While you must do your best to ensure that all transactions leave everyone satisfied, set proper boundaries to resolve customer conflicts. You should say “no” to unreasonable requests from disgruntled customers or anything that is outside what you are willing or empowered to provide.
Consider the motivation behind their request. If it can truly benefit your company, you may want to address that in your customer-first planning. If not, you may refuse their demands. Always be respectful by acknowledging the request, offering to update them if things change, and referring them to another vendor.
If the customer responds by being combative, you should know your rights as a business owner. For example, a customer may be guilty of defamation, libel, or slander against you, your business, or your employees. In that case, you should consult with your attorney.
Building a client-first business does not mean the customer is always right, but repositioning your company to focus on the customer. Doing so will improve customer retention, build brand recognition, and boost your reputation. It may even save you money, making it an important change to enact right now.