Guest article courtesy of BirdEye.
Businesses in the financial services space are no exception to this rule. Financial services businesses that don’t invest in client experience might find themselves losing prospects to the competition. Here’s why client experience matters and what your business can do to start improving.
What Is Client Experience and Why It Matters
Client experience is the sum of all the different touchpoints that a client has with your business. It starts from the moment of first discovery. Everything from stumbling onto your site to working with you falls under the umbrella of client experience.
Nowadays, client experience is on display more prominently for businesses in all verticals. Just look at sites where clients can post reviews such as Google and Facebook. If a business is known for consistently giving bad experiences, they’ll be hit by 1-star reviews. And this is easily visible for interested prospects.
On the other hand, businesses that provide excellent client experiences and receive great reviews see a real impact on their bottom line. In one example, a famous study by the Harvard Business School found that a 1-star increase in overall star rating led to a 5-9% increase in revenue.
When it comes to something as important as personal finances, clients want to make sure that they’re working with businesses that are known for providing great experiences. Therefore, to surpass competition you need to show your clients that you value them. Creating strong client experiences will increase your customer loyalty, boost repeat business, and attract new clientele. This is mission-critical.
Improving Your Client Experience
Here are three steps that you can take to improve your client experience.
Map the client journey
The first step that we recommend for businesses is taking time to map the client journey. Meet with your team and try to illustrate how a prospect first becomes aware of your business. Then, map out the steps they take to become paying clients.
Perhaps they often become aware of you through ads on Facebook? Schedule a call with one of your representatives before becoming a client. Whatever your process is, taking time to walk through it will help you get a better understanding of how you can make this journey easier for the average prospect.
Businesses that map the client journey often find that there are obstacles at different touchpoints. These prevent the journey from reaching completion. For example, a client might have trouble scheduling a time to meet with a representative. So he/she gets frustrated and just goes to a competitor instead. Mapping the client journey allows you to discover these obstacles and make improvements.
It can be helpful to collect feedback from clients in this stage as well. This will help you can get a better understanding of how they became aware of your business. Get on a call with a client in your target audience and ask them how they discovered your business. Try your best to uncover any obstacles that could have prevented them from actually ever becoming a client. Understand why they decided to go with you over a competitor.
Collect Data On Client Satisfaction
Even the best financial services businesses in the industry aren’t perfect. There are always areas of the operation that can be improved. To enhance your client experience, it’s important to collect data about what your clients are happy with and what they think needs improvement.
To start off, we recommend that you send net promoter score surveys to your clients. Net promoter score surveys ask customers to tell you how likely they would be to recommend your business on a scale from 0-10. This can be very helpful feedback to see how your clients feel about your brand overall.
We also recommend that you send more touchpoint-specific surveys, also known as transactional surveys. After a client has a call with one of your representatives, you can send them a survey asking them how they felt about that particular experience. This can help you identify more specific areas of improvement.
Some businesses have different teams managing different client touchpoints. There might be one team that responds to phone calls and one team that responds to online channels like Facebook Messenger. The end result of this is a fragmented experience, where a client can get a very different experience based on how they contact your business.
We recommend that businesses offer an omnichannel experience, where all of your communications can be found in one central place. That means that customers who contact you via phone, email, text messaging, or Facebook Messenger can expect the same experience regardless of the channel that they use to contact you.
Of course, this is easier said than done. But there is a solution: automation. We recommend trying a software solution that can help you centralize your client communications. While it is a bit of an investment, doing this will help ensure no message is slipping through the cracks.
Your client experience matters, but improving it can take some dedicated time and effort from your team. Businesses that take the effort to listen to their clients and act on their feedback find that their reward is great client satisfaction and more revenue.
BirdEye is a comprehensive customer experience platform. More than 50,000 businesses of all sizes use BirdEye every day to be found online through reviews, be chosen by customers with text messaging interactions, and be the best business with survey and insights tools.