How to Improve Customer Focus with Your Online Presence

Small and fledgling businesses tend to be engrossed with product development and marketing that they tend to put customer focus or service in the backburner. There are many reasons this could happen, but the importance of putting customers’ needs first cannot be downplayed by any business – whether large or small. 

Successful business owners instinctively know that keeping focus on customers’ needs and critical pain points are vital in growing the business. According to industry estimates, acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing customer. 

With various means to get in touch with your customers on a global scale these days, it no longer needs sky-high investments to build your clientele, which bodes well for a startup company. This can be a double-edged sword, too, as one bad review, if not handled properly, can have serious implications on your business.  

The Basics of Customer Focus 

Customer focus means putting your customers’ need as a priority. This means your business is committed to provide customer satisfaction and to build a robust relationship with them.

One of the ways to show customer focus is through customer service. Simply put, it’s any form of interaction between a potential or actual buyer and a representative of a company selling the product or service. This interaction is highly critical in attracting new clients, ensuring buyer satisfaction, and motivating repeat transactions.    

Below are some insights on how to ensure customer satisfaction:

1. Customer service starts with product development. This allows you to study your buyer’s specific personas and how your product can help. Read this guide on how product development can be a component of customer focus made easy.

2. Provide high quality product or service. As customer focus means improving customer experience in every step of the way, provide products and services that you can actually be proud of. Ensure truth in advertising, and don’t give false promises. If you say your product removes blood stains, make sure it does. Otherwise, your reputation will suffer.    

3. Act fast. It’s true what they say; Time is gold. A timely response, even if it may not be able to address specific questions or problems right away, means you care about your customers and are trying your best to resolve the problem as soon as possible.

4. Contacting you should be a breeze. It shouldn’t take several phones calls and transfers to reach one of your customer agents, only to tell your customers that she has to hold the line while you’re talking to another customer. That’s so 90s and should stay that way.

5. Offer a personalized service. Automated does not equate to robotic. Address your customer by his or her name, prepare a template for responses, but know how to adjust.

How to Use Digital Presence to Improve Customer Focus

1. Use Digital Tools to Connect

It’s almost considered a crime not to have, at least, one social media channel. Use this to your advantage, and integrate your social media channels and online store. Make it easy for your customers to contact you through various channels.

If you can streamline customer interaction across multiple channels website, social media, email, physical store, etc.— in one single platform, the better.

2. Make Your Customers Feel Important

Besides making contact easier for them and respecting their time, another surefire way to improve customer focus is to treat them like partners. Make them feel like they’re a member of a community.

Keep a record of all interactions with them. As a customer, you don’t want to fill in a customer complaint form for each time you reach out to discuss an issue.

3. Know How to Handle Customer Feedback

It may take 10 years to build your reputation, but it may only take 10 minutes to ruin it. Knowing how to handle customer feedback, especially if it is unfavorable to you, is one of the key factors in achieving a customer- focused business.

Do not be defensive or pass on the blame.  Be polite and show that you value their opinion even if it’s negative or even if you don’t agree with it. Learn from the feedback and be better.

4. Always Work on Becoming Better

To help foster strong relationships with your customers, create an online community where they can share their experiences with your product and service. This online community group may also serve as a test group if you’re developing a new product or service in the pipeline.

Also, what better way to ask feedback from your customers than sending them online surveys?  

5. Share Customer Reviews and Testimonials Generously

Positive comments and customer raves are your bragging rights. They help build your reputation and show how great, helpful, and valuable your products and services really are. So, don’t hold back, and post them on your website and across all social media channels.

This can be a powerful tool in attracting new customers, being that 64 percent of interested buyers will check on a company’s reviews before visiting the store.   

6. Tap AI Tools to Proactively Meet Customers’ Needs

A customer-focused business needs to proactively meet clients’ needs, and one way to do it may be through artificial intelligence (AI). There’s no need to spend too much on this. For instance, you can use a chat bot to welcome guests to your site and answer any questions that they may have about your product or service before deciding to try either.  

7. Creating Content as Part of Customer Service 

Once you’ve built your reputation as an authority in a certain niche, customer retention will seamlessly follow. Content can be used as a form of customer service too. By knowing what your customer wants and which topics they want to know more about, you can plan on making a content marketing strategy. 

Blog posts, e-books, webinars, and instructional videos are the most common types of content being uploaded on a daily basis. These satisfy a group of customers in a specific niche. Doing this covers two essential components: customer service and marketing, but in a whole new level. Just make sure you update your content regularly.

8. Add Self-service Options to Improve Online Customer Support

Some customers don’t want to bother calling hotlines and interacting with chat bots. In this digital age where people expect to have the answers once they type in a specific question, it’s imperative for a company’s website to have a self-service application.

You can include a self-service function in your website where instructional videos, FAQ section, online discussion fora, and other helpful tools can be found by a self-reliant customer.  

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re providing a service or selling a product, keeping your customers happy can spell progress, long-term business growth, or liquidation. It’s important to enhance customer support and promote customer satisfaction and loyalty in every step of the way, and in all channels — whether online or offline.

About Carson Derrow

My name is Carson Derrow I'm an entrepreneur, professional blogger, and marketer from Arkansas. I've been writing for startups and small businesses since 2012. I share the latest business news, tools, resources, and marketing tips to help startups and small businesses to grow their business.