Creating a stellar customer experience marks you out from your competitors. Learn about the latest innovations and how they can help drive revenue.

In mid-2022, customer satisfaction in the U.S. sank to its lowest point in 17 years. Having stagnated for a decade, it dropped off a cliff in 2019. Though the last quarter of 2022 showed a slight upturn, companies still have a lot of ground to gain.

Implementing a solid customer experience strategy may seem like a no-brainer. But first, you need to understand the difference between customer service and customer experience.

Customer service relates to a specific interaction: for example when a person requests assistance from your customer agents, sales reps or tech support. Customer experience describes the whole journey with your business, from the initial contact to the post-purchase experience. This might include interactions with products, services, marketing materials, your website or social media.

A seamless journey through each step of the buying process helps build customer satisfaction and loyalty. So what are the latest innovations to ensure your organization’s customer experience outshines your rivals?

1. hyper-personalization

This means more than simply addressing your customers by name. Hyper-personalization involves using advanced artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms and real-time data to deliver highly customized — and satisfying — experiences. Based on how an individual customer interacts, they’ll receive personal, targeted recommendations.

By incorporating omnichannel software, you can also make sure that experience is consistently positive whether your customer engages via the website, by phone, by chat, on social media or in person. The benefit? You’ll know what the customer is looking for at a particular point in time and you’ll boost brand loyalty.

2. augmented reality

Another novel way to elevate your customer experience is through augmented reality or AR. This adds an immersive element and can increase sales by showing users how a product might work for them. For example, a customer could virtually try on clothing or makeup, or picture how furniture will look in their home using 3D images.

3. chatbots

Though not new to the scene, chatbots are becoming increasingly sophisticated. They’re a handy way to provide accurate answers to quick questions, freeing up customer agent time for more complex issues. The latest chatbots use AI technology, allowing them to understand natural language and engage in more human-like conversations.

4. communicate your values

Values like inclusivity, equity and a strong sense of social responsibility can make all the difference when a customer is choosing between you and a competitor. Communicating your values can help your business by:

  • improving brand awareness
  • increasing customer retention and loyalty
  • attracting your target audience more effectively

5. forging emotional connections

If a customer feels an emotional attachment to your company, they’re more likely to choose you over a competitor next time. A pattern of positive encounters, from stress-free interactions with customer support to frictionless purchasing experiences, will bring that customer back again and again.

And while technology plays a vital role in your customer experience, don’t lose sight of the value of the human touch in creating emotional connections.

6. train, train, train

Adding new tech to enhance your customer experience can reap rewards, but only if you devote time and resources to adequately train your employees. According to a 2022 Randstad survey, 75 percent of employee respondents said reskilling and upskilling opportunities offered by their employer were very important to them.

Prioritizing training not only improves customer satisfaction, but also helps motivate and retain staff. If you feel you’re chasing your tail trying to keep on top of in-house training, take advantage of the numerous online training platforms available. And if you need assistance sourcing top-notch talent, so your customer experience exceeds expectations, get in touch with Randstad today.