Why Customer Empathy Should Be a Top Priority When Building Your Business Strategy

Why Customer Empathy Should Be a Top Priority When Building Your Business Strategy

Empathy is defined as “the ability to understand and share the feelings of another”. When it comes to business, “another” is your customer. You need to understand the feelings of your customers if you want to improve their experience. You should be invested in improving customer experience because it is a major factor in the success of your business. Consumers want to give their money to businesses that understand their needs and expectations and meet them. The truly excellent businesses don’t just meet customer expectations, they exceed them. Providing excellent customer experience drives up customer engagement, retention, and sales, so it’s in your best interest to make it a top priority. The key to unlocking customer experience success is empathy.

5 Reasons Why Customer Empathy Should Be a Top Priority for Your Business

To Help You Create Actionable Goals

All the information you get from your customers is valuable information. We’d all love to have happy customers all the time, but this just isn’t realistic. By talking to your customers and engaging with them empathetically, you encourage them to open up about their experience with your company. You should be capturing all of the interactions you get with customers and turning this data into actionable goals. Actionable goals are how you move your business forward.

To Understand Where Friction Lies in Your Customer Journey and How to Fix It

No customer journey is completely frictionless, but this should be the goal you are working towards. If your customers are complaining about how difficult it was to reach your customer service team, how confusing your checkout system is, and how your website doesn’t work properly on their phone, these aren’t things you should ignore with the intent of solving another time. Just because you can’t fix something right now doesn’t mean you can’t show empathy to your customers and ask them for details on how they found the experience with your company. You may just find there are additional details that you failed to consider simply because you are too close to the business to see where the friction is.

To Understand What Problem Your Business Fixes

Whether you’re selling a product or a service, your business is solving a problem for customers. However, sometimes our intentions for the product and how they are actually used and perceived by customers are different. If you approach interactions with your customers with empathy, you can have an open dialogue about how exactly your product or service is being used. Is it helping solve their problem? Is there something customers wish they could have? Is your product being used for something you didn’t intend? These are all questions you can ask customers when they think you’re a company that listens and cares about what they have to say.

To Improve Your Customer Service Interactions

How your agents talk to your customers is critical to the customer experience. Businesses are now moving away from the practice of having a predefined script that all agents must follow and moving to a more flexible and dynamic approach to customer service. All communication starts with empathy, whether that’s in a customer service setting, or just when you’re going about your daily life. You need to approach customers with a level of open-minded understanding if you want them to feel positive about the interaction.

To Improve the Customer Experience

The customer experience you provide is your unique selling point. If you want to improve the customer experience you provide, then you need to understand firstly what sets you apart from the competition, and secondly, how you can do it better. Customer experience is the reason your customers keep coming back to you when there are other options available. However, if you fail to meet the customer’s expectations, they will look elsewhere. This is why you need to build a customer-centric business, and customer-centricity starts with empathy. You can’t build a business focused on customers if you don’t understand your customers.

How to Build Empathy Into Your Business Strategy

How to Build Empathy Into Your Business Strategy

Talk to Your Customers Frequently

If you run a customer service operation, then you are talking to your customers every day. But simply responding to customer problems isn’t enough. You need to be proactive about talking to your customers and discussing their wants and needs, as well as any issues they are facing with your company. You don’t have to wait for them to come to you, you can go to them. There are a couple of ways to do this.

Firstly, you should keep the surveys short so that they don’t take up too much of your customer’s time. You should include free-text boxes as well as multiple choice answers, but don’t force customers to fill out the free-text boxes. These free-text boxes five customers the opportunity to expand on an issue if they want to, which can be extremely valuable for your business. Sometimes when we are designing a questionnaire, we could be missing something obvious to consumers but not obvious to workers. However, a customer may decide not to survey all if they feel forced to spend more time on it than they would like. Communicate with your customers that it will be a short survey. You could also offer an incentive for completing the survey, such as loyalty points or a discount on their next purchase.

Create Empathy Statements

Empathy statements are short phrases you can create that help you establish a connection with a customer. This isn’t about creating a script, but rather knowing some key phrases that can help foster empathy and build a rapport. These phrases should be used only where it is appropriate so that it comes across as organic.

Examples of Empathy Statements and Some Tips

The statements convey the same message, but the first statement sounds better to customers. It shows an element of responsibility for the situation and sounds more immediate. The passive version sounds less immediate and makes customers feel less sure of who is handling the problem. In the second statement it isn’t clear who is asking the sales team to look at the problem, it just says it will be looked at, but if you don’t know who’s asking, then how can you be sure it will be done? This is the subtle but important difference between the two statements.

If you’re still unsure whether you’re using the passive voice or active voice, there’s a trick you can use. If you can add the phrase “by robots” to the end of the sentence, then you’re using the passive voice. This might sound a bit silly, but it’s a simple way to keep the passive voice in check and it’s something you won’t forget. For example:

Your customers want to talk to humans, not robots. They even want their robots to sound human, so that is how you should communicate.

Other Ways to Incorporate Empathy Into Your Business

Other Ways to Incorporate Empathy Into Your Business

Make Your Ethics Clear

We live in an increasingly ethics focused world where the consumer base is more informed on social, ethical, and political issues than ever before. You don’t have to broadcast all of your beliefs, but there are some simple ways you can let your customers know you are an ethical company. Let’s take a look.

The cost of being perceived as an unethical company can be severe. According to one report, 35% of consumers will stop buying from a brand they perceive as unethical, even if there is no alternative.

Empathy Isn’t Just For Customers

Displaying empathy towards your customers will go a long way to improving your success, but empathy should extend to your whole organization. This means creating ethical policies for employees so they feel appreciated and supported in their roles. Happier employees are more likely to stay with your business and work to improve it.

Learn why customers choose CommBox for their customer communications.

Request a Demo

Sign up for our newsletter


    Surprise!
    We have rebranded

    Thank you BumpYard. Hello CommBox

    Say hello to CommBox.io, the intelligent customer communication center for live and automated interactions.

    We’re extremely excited to announce that we have changed our company name to CommBox. It’s still the same company with the same awesome people! just a new name, a fresh look, and a brighter future.

    Read full story