Addressing the Business Puzzle, Small Business or Large Firm: How to Improve Customer Experience and Drive Profits
As businesses grow, the chase is usually for-profit maximization, they introduce new products or services, create new marketing plans, invest in human capital and technology, all for expansion, better returns, and to gain a competitive edge. However, with all these efforts to maximize profits, the mechanism to survey and gauge customer feedback is most often missing. This is where customer experience comes in and it falls within the non-financial business performance indicator.
Customer experience is so important and yet business operators rarely pay attention to it, therefore I am giving my opinion on it for awakening. To me, understanding customer experience is as important as major efforts businesses consider maximizing profits. Firstly, what do we mean by a non-financial business performance indicator? These are measures that cannot be expressed in monetary units, which are related to product or service quality, customer relationships, operations, and so on. A good example is customer experience which a large body of knowledge sees as a significant determinant of business profitability and income. Fundamentally, customer experience involves every aspect of business offering or operations— from the quality of customer care to patronage pattern, satisfaction, advertisement, the shopping environment, sales, ease to use or get products or services, and so on.
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That said, one of the most significant elements in helping a business get to know its customers and to have a fair idea of patronage and customer experience is data. Invariably customer data can easily be used to gain different insights and in particular help, businesses to align with customer goals. As important as customer experience measure is businesses hardly gather and process its data to improve business performance. Without doubts, if data on customer experience is well utilized it can improve the different aspects of business operations from sales performance to customer growth and even profitability.
From context observation poor customer data management practices are not just a small business issue, it involves large firms as well in Nigeria and indeed Africa. Businesses usually guess customers’ needs without asking and analyzing what their interests are, the crucial impact of customer data on businesses is rarely considered. The place of measuring customer experience with data is generally missing in most developing business environments and huge challenges exist majorly in Africa. In recent times we have seen businesses introduce new products and services, even have price changes without reaching out to customers to determine their preferences or what types of changes they would like to see, the level of product or service expectations, and if they would be willing to pay more for them. In a market or environment where substitute demands are readily available, businesses must endeavor to do more and consider evaluating customer experience from time to time.