Although the term ‘Customer is King’ was coined many years ago, it is still true although the medium of interaction and sales has largely evolved since. Now, businesses are actively seeking the help of information technology companies to meet customer expectations based on the unintentional trends they are setting online. With the help of big data and artificial intelligence, organizations are making decisions that are much more informed and closer to current consumer behavior trends. The more accurate the data collection, sifting, and analysis, the more precise will be the strategies, annual plans, and campaign KPIs. In short, a clearer picture of the future is possible with the help of careful data handling with the help of new IT systems in the market.

Introduction – The Global Tech Market

The challenge for businesses lies in understanding how to bridge the gap between organizational goals and customer prospects. Providing a top-notch customer experience can be as simple as it can be complex, as long as you know the direction to steer your car in. For instance, your customers might be looking for something completely different from what you have in mind in terms of a new product launch. What do you do in such a case? Abandon your new product line idea? Or ignore the needs of the customer? In the former case, you might lose an opportunity to create a differentiating edge among competition while the latter will noticeably cause you a loss in sales and maybe even market share.

Managers are trying to prioritize customer experience (CX) as a key metric to gauge the success of their businesses. There is no second-guessing that the best way to attract and attain customers is to sell a quality product. However, the process does not end there. The customer journey must be flawless – or low in faults – from the beginning to the end of the shopping experience. Because the main growth in sales for businesses is coming out of a customer’s wallet, it is important to make them willingly do so.

A satisfied customer is likely to spend more with your brand. In fact, a study shows that happy customers will pay anywhere from 13% to an 18% premium in exchange for a great customer experience. Another study found that a good customer experience, where a business delivers on customer expectations will surpass price and product quality as key brand differentiators.

Also Read: How Dynamic Pricing Can Help Brands Capture New Markets

Brands must go the extra mile to get to know their customers if they want to get ahead of the competition. Companies are planning on greater budgets for CX and investing in other strategies to maintain long-term relationships with their audience. This new concept is called relationship management where you are expected to manage customer experience, ensuring they get their money’s worth if you want them to keep coming back. The customer journey is key to master for repeat customers to have their expectations met every time. Collecting customer data – also called Voice of Customer Data – to gain valuable insights from raw data quickly and precisely.

The good news for organizations is that it does not matter the industry you are in. As long as you work to gain consumer insights, you are bound to increase retention, sales, and year-on-year revenue for the businesses. Over the coming year, brands are expected to take lessons from their failures and apply them with the help of technology-driven results to build deeper customer relationships. Customer expectations being met is a goal all brands and big organizations are working toward, and it is high time this be one of the main KPIs to measure growth as well.

Tech Sales: Global Customer Expectations in 2022

An always-online world meshed with artificial intelligence and the internet of things (IoT) have been adopted by marketing managers, applying the latest techniques to new product development, customer service, and even re-branding. These techniques have enabled businesses to improve services and meet customer expectations, increasing brand loyalty and hence, retaining consumers.

Need Help Meeting Customer Expectations?

As a business, your core clientele should be your customers, whether it be a B2B or B2C business model. One bad customer experience can seem not too big but soon enough, this might have a snowball effect. Just as when good customer experiences are advocates for the brand, so are bad customer experiences. A study found that over 91% of customers leave a brand they are unhappy with without any complaints. This really leaves managers and marketeers with no chance to gauge their true potential. 

Often, such brands are washed over when a slightly better business comes into the picture, washing them out, at least temporarily. There are a few reasons that result in bad customer experiences. These instances are most certainly workable and experts advise managers to ensure that any unnecessary bottlenecks are cleared the first instance they come about. Some difficulties in the excellent customer experience process include:

  • Negative experiences with customer support cause customers to have a bad perception of the brand. While this may or may not be accurate, the last bite of your food can be distasteful enough to ruin the entire experience. Hence, it is important to keep in mind the customer journey when designing the customer support service bit. The people you hire and the level of training you give them will reflect in the way they handle your customers.
  • When the purchasing process is difficult at any step of the way, it is likely that the customer will ricochet from the entire process. For instance, if your website loads slow, or the customer has difficulty adding a product to the cart, they are likely to abandon their shopping experience due to inconvenience, costing you an opportunity to make money.
  • As a business, your priority must be the security and safety of your customer’s personal data. When you do not invest enough in security systems to protect your customer base, you are eventually bound to burnout as a business because you are compromising on the needs of the people who are fuelling your business in the first place.
  • A bad customer experience can still be salvaged if your support team is efficient enough to pacify the customer when they provide feedback. More often than not, when a customer spends money with you, they will wait for as long as their patience allows for you to make adjustments for them. However, if their patience is tested for too long, they will simply give up and this can have damaging effects on the business. For instance, a bad review on an online closed group can cause thousands of people to boycott the product or service provided by your company. In an era where technology is evolving every day, it is important to keep abreast with changing customer expectations and provide them with stellar services.

Improving Customer Experience

Although it sounds straightforward when a manager says, “To provide excellent customer service, we need to meet customer expectations of the brand,” there is a vast amount of work that goes into making the brand a go-to option for its customer base. It is not easy to get inside the consumer black box to comprehend what they are looking for, but with the help of artificial intelligence and various other information technology systems, managers and marketers are now making forecasts and projections quite accurately.

Getting yourself up and digital is not as easy as it sounds if you are starting fresh. You have plenty of work to put in behind the scenes to make every effort successful and effective. Slowly, brands need to realize that as they take more and more control of the customer’s buying and spending decisions, they will be able to employ better ‘pull strategies’ of marketing where the consumer becomes utterly loyal. 

Once the trustworthiness is locked, your brand will have the top-of-the-mind recall and a personal brand advocate for your business. According to expert advice, investing in the right resources at the right time can make or break business deals for you. Below are a few tips for businesses looking to grow in terms of their sales and customer bases.

  • Artificial intelligence is crucial for sales

No matter how good your business was doing a few years, keeping up with technology and innovation is what is going to get you forward. Today, artificial intelligence has evolved from being used by huge companies in the entertainment industry to being an integral part of IT, marketing, and even finance firms, to name a few examples. It is nearly impossible to think where we would be without the collection of real-time data, processing it into understandable chunks, and having business managers make valuable decisions for their customers. For instance, your local modern trade store would not know the stock of coffee to restock if they did not have basic, yet integral smart systems to inform them what sells well and is in demand.

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Another great brainchild of AI specialists and technologists is chatbots that are present across nearly every social media platform, website, and even mobile application. They work in two ways; instant customer query settlement and cost reduction for companies. Chatbots have been highly successful as they are known to process and solve many queries at one time. Siri, voice-enabled note-taking, and automatic appointment settings are all great examples of how artificial intelligence in action.

  • An increase in multi-channel servicing

Companies are everywhere because their customers are everywhere. The Facebook network, the Google network, and many other various apps all run ads for brands where their customers most likely visit, ensuring a repeated sense of interaction with the brand. The fact that brands even know what websites their audience is visiting is artificial intelligence in play. Experts suggest businesses invest in many different channels, so they can make the most out of their sales and campaigns. Although customers are open to different service levels through different online channels, they expect the quality of communication and customer support to stay the same.

A good example to consider is the standard of Ikea across the world. No matter what country or part of the world you go to, if you see an Ikea, you know what you will see there. The point is much more than coming across perfect furniture items that instantly look different when you take them home. It is about how the brand understands what its audience wants, and the edge they have over competitors is understanding customer expectations. 

Although lifestyle and standard of living differ everywhere in the world, the standard Ikea has set is such that everyone takes away with some sort of inspiration by the time they have made their way to the end of the store. In a nutshell, when your customer identifies with you, you gain the privilege to tell them what they need. Similarly, experts are advising companies to brace themselves for 2022 and focus on providing an omnichannel experience so customers do not miss a second of their favorite brand.

  • Go Mobile!

In a study carried out to understand the need to perfect mobile websites and interfaces, over 50% of the audience agreed that they would be disappointed by the company for providing poor channel interaction even if they like the brand. 57% reportedly said that they would not recommend such a brand to their friends, considering a poorly designed mobile interface. When managers cheap out to save up on a few dollars, they are really costing themselves a couple thousand in the future for when customers do not come back to digitally interact with the brand. 

On average, over half the website traffic for most companies comes through mobile devices, especially since desktop usage is declining. Currently, most global industries still have to fully exploit this aspect of marketing, and hence, experts encourage managers to focus on developing and implementing a stellar system through which customers can connect with the brand that they love so much!

There is still a huge gap in the market that needs to be considered seriously and instantly. When customers find it difficult to navigate between web pages, you can be sure that they will abandon the website and you will lose potential sales and clients, maybe even for long periods. Once again, the customer is still king, and keeping them happy is up to the company interacting with them.

  • Focus on strength in numbers

When customers are upset, they will make more noise than they will when they are satisfied. This is not really shocking, because we all do the same, do we not? A study showed that out of the total number of satisfied customers, only 72% of them will spread the word and only to about six close people they know. However, a bad experience is more likely to be reported to about 15 people 13% of the time. The same study also highlights that the problem is not only a bad experience but also the fact that only 1 in 26 unhappy customers will come forward to address the issue they are facing.

Customer expectations and experience enhancement are at an all-time high, making it crucial to cater to customers. Even though sometimes bad experiences are inevitable, companies can salvage their reputation and stand in the market by employing damage control because each bad experience with a brand will lead to 1 in 3 people quitting the brand. Certainly not a favorable outcome, a brand must keep their eyes on the prize and work their strategies backward sometimes.

Final Thoughts

No matter the era we live in, it is crucial to stay abreast of what is going on around you to succeed in a highly competitive, shark tank market. Nearly all businesses out there are competing on attracting and retaining consumers by meeting customer expectations in a world that is full of ads, content, and purchase requests. The ‘push marketing’ strategy is one that never works, at least in the long term, and that is probably why brands are unable to focus on long-term strategies. Experts suggest that knowing your customer’s wants, needs, background, likes and dislikes, socioeconomic class, age group, and even geographical location, can sometimes help brands highlight and design strategies that will hit the nail right in the coffin in terms of identifying the wavering customer black box.

Focusing on excellent customer experience, putting the client’s needs first, ensuring their queries are answered, and acknowledging their individuality as people is extremely important for brands to thrive in an increasingly saturated market. Ensuring a positive, smooth interaction with customers, positively delivering 100/% satisfaction at each customer touchpoint, and creating consumer profiles are all important ways in which companies can understand what way to head in for marketing strategy and future prospects of the brand to function fully.

The power that the customers hold today is much more than that was explored many years ago. The typical consumer is well-informed, put together, and even conscious about the choices they want to make. A clear understanding of the brand, smooth interaction through multiple social media outlets, and a pleasant experience with the brand are all ways in which you can have loyal customers that will stick with you through the long haul!