Think about it. If you want to buy a household appliance like a washing machine, for example, or book a service online, how likely is it that you’ll head straight to the nearest appliance store, or book the very first service you come across while online?
Chances are you’ll start with a search and compare reviews and prices across multiple sites. You might even check customer reviews to see what other people have to say about a service or product, before deciding whether or not it’s worth paying for.
In between becoming aware of a service or a product and deciding to pay for it, a customer can go on several searches, make mistakes, abandon the process before picking it up again, and switch channels. It’s still a journey, but more of a complicated path with twists, turns and detours.
The importance of a customer’s end-to-end journey is well-established in a number of industries, particularly those in the services space. These businesses know that, once they’ve landed a customer, they have to work hard to attract and retain them.
In a world where online is taking an increasingly large slice of the retail pie (data shows that e-commerce spending in Nigeria is growing so rapidly that it’s expected to outperform the global average), companies that understand that the customer journey starts long before they decide to buy something and ends a long time after they’ve paid for the product or service, will be rewarded.
“The key is to constantly look at how to offer real customer value, with a special focus on being there if and when a customer needs you,” says Awazi Angbalaga, Country Manager for SweepSouth, an online home services company through which customers are able to book domestic workers to clean their homes.
“Being able to quickly find a reliable and efficient domestic worker has long been a problem for many people. SweepSouth offers a quick and convenient way to book a trustworthy, thoroughly vetted and excellent cleaner for a time and day that best suits you.” says Angbalaga.
“Clients love the fact that not only do we provide good service, we provide them accountability that was otherwise lacking in other working arrangements they have had in the past to solve for their home cleaning needs. Customers can give SweepStars (the workers on the SweepSouth platform) ratings for other clients to see. We also have a support team on standby if a problem occurs.
Angbalaga adds that the company is well aware that customers are also more likely to recommend brands that have given them a good customer experience to friends and family, making it a crucial way of growing the customer base and revenue.”
The rewards for ensuring that customers have the best possible experience at every point in their journey are significant. Research shows that not only are customers willing to pay more for a great customer experience but that they’ll remain loyal too. That’s crucial, given that up to 65% of a company’s business can come from existing customers.
Companies can reap those rewards if they put in the effort to ensure that the customer has the best possible experience throughout their journey and beyond. And in a world where customers have an array of choices available to them, providing those kinds of experiences isn’t just a nice-to-have, it’s an imperative.