Reducing Customer Effort is Critical to Satisfaction

2 min read
Feb 23, 2024 2:31:55 PM

Brands with loyal and engaged customers understand that reducing effort helps raise satisfaction.

The easier it is to interact with your brand, the happier your customers are, and the more likely they are to become long-term advocates.

Understanding Customer Effort

Customer effort is the amount of time, energy, and resources customers must invest to interact with a company. More simply, it reflects how easy it is for customers to get what they need. This encompasses all touchpoints along the journey – from navigating the website and making a purchase to finding information and resolving an issue. High levels of effort, complexity, and friction can lead to frustration and, eventually, churn.

This is particularly true when customers seek help. According to J.D. Power data, effort to resolve an issue and overall satisfaction are strongly correlated across every service channel.

In fact, “strongly agree minimal effort was required to resolve my issue” is a Key Performance Indicator (KPI) for each channel. Meeting this KPI can have a huge positive influence on satisfaction.

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Reducing customer effort not only influences overall satisfaction, but it also helps mitigate the negative impact of long wait times across all channels. For example, when customers strongly agreed that minimal effort was required to resolve an issue for the phone channel, satisfaction was higher even when they had to wait more than 5 minutes for the resolution.

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Strategies to Reduce Customer Effort

Streamline Processes – Simplify the customer journey by eliminating roadblocks and unnecessary steps. Make it easy, pleasant, and convenient to find what they need by providing clearly visible contact information, easily accessible FAQs, and quick connection to support agents.

Optimize Self-Service Channels – Giving customers the tools to help themselves will reduce time, effort, and friction. By investing in effective resources, such as a searchable knowledge base, detailed video tutorials, or a comprehensive FAQ section, customers feel empowered and are not forced to rely on agent assistance.

Personalize Interactions – Leverage data to personalize the customer journey and streamline the experience. By knowing customer preferences, purchase history, and past interactions, brands can anticipate needs, tailor recommendations, and proactively address concerns.

Resolve Issues on First Contact – Nothing frustrates customers more than bouncing around to different agents. Empower your support team with the training, tools, and authority to independently resolve issues on the first contact. 

In today’s competitive landscape, reducing customer effort and optimizing service channels are strategic imperatives. Removing roadblocks, streamlining processes, and improving interactions can cultivate stronger relationships with customers, build loyalty, increase recommendations, and differentiate brands from less helpful competitors.

If you are challenged with understanding and reducing customer effort, connect with our experts today >>>

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