The payments experience is one with which we are all familiar. We do business with companies that make it easy for us to complete or schedule payments, as well as those that make it difficult. And when you really look at it, this can be a HUGE contributor to a positive or negative overall experience with a brand.
Tara Kelly, President & CEO of SPLICE Software, and Alan Cacic, Director - eCommerce Sales Canada of Global Payments took some time to explore the top strategies that can create a frictionless payments experience for your customers. You can watch the webinar here.
With all these options, let's discuss some of the easiest places to start?
Using Data Strategically for Personalized Experiences: when we get into the data conversation, things can start to snowball out of control. A good technology partner can help with with this conversation, but there are also a couple of things that you can do immediately yourself to get started:
- Profile the data you currently collect on your customers
- Think about where and when using that data might provide a better experience for them
The strategic part of this conversation is the most important thing. There are lots of technologies that can help you with moving data and incorporating data into communications. And there are lots of systems that can help you collect MORE data. And none of these things will actually impact your customers in a positive way unless you do steps 1 and 2 first.
Defining the Known & Desired Experience: on this front, the BEST thing to do is get a solid surveying strategy in place. One that defines specific operational changes, and one that measures the overall customer experience. For more information on different surveying techniques, check out this blog.
When it comes to the low hanging fruit however, there is another place to look. And that's (again) at information that you already know. One of the best sources of this information is your call center. Your agents are collecting data on customer pains and emotions day in and day out, and whether you have an official way to capture this information, it's there. A focus group of your call center agents can give you the same (if not more) feedback than actually surveying your customers.
I facilitated this once for one of our clients at SPLICE, and the insights were INSANE! We changed almost everything about the way we were communicating with the policyholders, and the operational impact was obvious almost immediately. So don't forget about your internal treasure trove of information :)
Creating a Seamless Experience: this one is more of a corporate culture thing. Your company, as a whole, must WANT to compete on the experience. If you don't, the challenges with creating a seamless experience will continue to set up back.
Unfortunately, this one isn't as easy as the first two. Culture is a difficult thing to change for any organization. But it can be heavily influenced by upper management. So, if you consider yourself in that category, take a look at how you are showing up for your team. Are you prioritizing the experience? Or are you prioritizing KPI's that are in stark relief to that goal?
Choosing Safe & Compliant Systems: this one is all about due diligence. I would love to be able to tell you that any tech solution provider out there has a safe & compliant system; the truth is, they don't. When you're looking at vendors or systems, especially ones that deal with your customer data, make sure they can prove that they are compliant. Complete a security audit. Ask for their data management practices. Make sure they don't share your data. And make sure that they are TRUSTED in the industry; which may mean they aren't the cheapest.
Using Automation Intelligently: like any other "new" technology that arises, automation has a time and a place. That doesn't mean that you should use it at ALL times in ALL places.
This one plays heavily with tip #2. You have to identify when and where in your customer journey it makes sense to automate a process; and the win has to be two-fold:
- Provides a better experience for the customer
- Provides a better, more streamlined experience internally
If your solution only does one of the two, it won't end up giving you the long-term benefits you want. And, you're going to be back at the drawing board, trying to integrate even MORE systems, giving you a higher likelihood of your experience breaking down.
Making it Easy
I hope that this breakdown has made it a little easier for you to find a place to start in your customer experience improvements. In my experience, this will be the match that was needed for a few of you.
If you still feel lost, Technology Partners like SPLICE and Global Payments can help you get started. All it takes is a simple phone call - so book one if you're ready to make customer experience your next priority.