Ever woke up to a notification saying “Yay!, Your product is on its way!” It’s just a simple feature, but regardless, it brings a smile on your face. This is how seriously e-commerce giants take their customer’s experience. So, it wouldn’t come as a surprise when we say 2.14 billion people prefer shopping online each day. It is not just one notification, but collectively the entire user experience that makes you loyal to these e-commerce sites. Every time you shop at Amazon or eBay, from order placement until delivery to feedback, they make sure the customer is at the center of the entire process.
B2C has always considered customer-centricity as an important factor for business growth. So, what is customer-centricity? It is a way of doing business that not only encourages a positive customer experience but ensures loyalty and customer satisfaction. Though customer-centricity is much more developed in the B2C organizations, B2B businesses have been catching up as well. B2B organizations are developing O2C strategies around the consumers by Implementing a customer-oriented approach in their A/R process.
Today, there is a cut-throat competition among the industries when it comes to providing similar products and services. So what could make your organization stand out? The customer service you provide.
The key to success is ensuring that your customers are catered throughout order-to-cash, and a strong customer relationship is maintained. For example, during order management, understanding customer requirements is key. Moreover, to have a customer-focused process, it is essential to have :
All of these steps are essential in building a strong client relationship while focusing on two crucial things- to keep the process running smoothly and to encourage future business.
If the organization’s goal is to become customer-centric, there’s one sure way to make the value spread like wildfire through your organization: Make it a core value. This ensures that the employee’s implement it on a regular basis.
Let’s look at some customer-centric strategies that could help in improving the A/R processes while ensuring customer loyalty.
It is necessary to understand that the primary concern is to keep the customers loyal to the company. This is only possible when you walk through your customer’s paths and anticipate their needs.
“Understanding that certain variables are out of the customer’s control and having an emotional intelligence towards them can really go a long way.”
– Stephanee Brantley | Director of A/R, EBSCO
Training your employees to be more customer-friendly is also vital for the business. In collections, where successfully getting the payments is necessary, what is more important, is to build a long term customer relationship. When asked about how to train order-to-cash professionals to be more customer-oriented, Stephanee said-
“ Once I stayed on the call with a customer, and all he talked about was his cats because he needed someone to talk to. So, this extra effort from our side let him open up about the real issue and enhanced our client relation”
So, don’t just put yourself in their shoes but look beyond. Always try to be sensitive to the customer’s issues but at the same time never refrain from asking the question “when can you pay?”.
How proactive are you when solving customer queries? Your responsiveness not only impacts client relations but also affects brand loyalty. Instead of taking hours or days, if the issues are resolved on-spot, it inculcates a positive experience. For example, Staples Inc., an American office retail company, had implemented a Collections Management Software to store the customer’s payment history. Doing so not only allowed them to resolve issues in a single click but also helped them predict if something could go wrong in the future.
Thus, saying that “Customer-Centricity could be your organization’s ticket to success” might not be an overstatement. The shift towards becoming a customer-centric organization might be a bit difficult and a long term process, but on the bright side, it is the holy grail towards maximizing customer value.
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