Study: Customer service bests low prices
Many companies believe that when it comes down to it, price is the be-all end-all of commerce. In this sense, giving customers the best deals can become the single-minded quest of a business, sometimes at the expense of other – often equally important – objectives. Not only that, but recent research suggests that price is only one component of the complicated equation that drives customer loyalty and market share. In fact, recent studies show that customer experience is often more important than competitive pricing in terms of attracting and retaining customers.
The value of perception
When people talk about brand image, they are referring to a fairly complicated collection of impressions and opinions on behalf of customers. Price, of course, affects this, but a recent study from Forrester suggests that a positive brand impression is built more on customer service, according to CMS Wire. The study polled more than 7,500 Americans about their experiences dealing with banks, retailers and other businesses and found that at the end of the day, a positive customer experience typically outshines competitive pricing. Conversely, a negative experience is likely to turn away shoppers, regardless of how low the prices are.
There is no denying that price is at the forefront of most consumers’ minds, so how can one explain the dominance of strong customer service? According to the source, the answer lies in what customers really want: convenience, engagement and tailored service.
For example, online retailers that don’t necessarily always have the lowest prices – like Amazon – can make up for this particular shortcoming by offering other services that customers crave like one-click shopping, special promotions and excellent customer service. Even though a consumer might be able to find a specific item at a lower price elsewhere on the web, he or she may be more inclined to buy it through Amazon if it means less hassle, better customer service and more reliable delivery.
Upping your customer service game
What does Forrester’s study mean for your business? First and foremost, it means that investing time and money into improving customer experience is likely a safer bet than constantly trying to lower your prices. Using techniques like personalized mailers, customer-specific promotions and individualized transaction documents can help your company provide value in ways other than simply bargain-basement pricing. To help in this quest, many businesses turn to variable data printing software, which helps them engage customers and create exemplary customer experiences.
Do you want to separate yourself from your competitors by improving your customer experiences? Call Objectif Lune today to learn about how we can help!