I think it is fair to say that many B2C companies have figured out that customer experience matters. Look at Amazon’s one-click ordering or a jewelry store offering a glass of champagne as you shop their store. Many consumers are choosing where to shop based on what the experience is like when they shop. As with many trends, the B2B world is slow to adopt the tactics used in the B2C world but they are starting to realize the importance of the customer experience.
As a sales professional there are three areas where you can improve the B2B customer experience.
- Speed: Time is of the essence, customers can’t afford to have issues in their business not getting met. Not only do you need to respond to their request as soon as possible but you need to be proactive and anticipate their needs.
- Personalization: Amazon offers you suggested products based on your search history and based on your order history. Netflix recommends things to watch. What ways can you personalize your offering for your clients? You need to look for commonalities between your customers. Can we segment your clients out to how their businesses are similar and then compare the products of yours and your competitors that each use. Is there a way to go a client and say: “Based on your business and what you currently use with us, you may be interested in this product because (other businesses like yours, your competitors, etc) are also using said product.
- Ease: Jeffery Gitomer says that, “All things being equal, people buy from people they like. All things not quite being equal, people buy from people they like.” One of the ways for people to like you is to be easy to work with. People place a high premium on simplicity.
None of these steps are easy and most likely will need some sort of direction from senior leadership. But most senior leaders are going to want some proof that an idea works. So pick one of the three things: speed, personalization, or ease. Find a way that you can offer it to your clients. From there prove the value that your customers are getting from you and present it up the food chain.