Level up your CX

There’s no such thing as a perfect business, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t invest 100% into building the best customer experience.

Hannah Header

Let’s go on an adventure with Alex. The challenge for you, player one, is navigating each customer experience scenario to earn maximum customer satisfaction points. If you think you’re an expert, beware—the details matter. Good luck.

LEVEL 1

Matcha first

Illustration of coffee

Alex needs her daily dose of caffeine to get going. On her way to work, she places a mobile order for a matcha green tea latte at her favorite coffee shop. Behind the scenes, the app has been finicky. The shop has gotten some complaints, but a lot of customers are happy, too, so…

Alex was charged, but the order didn’t go through.

Illustration of coffee

What should the coffee shop do?

Select a choice arrow

Focus on the customers in line

Negative result

To say it’s a madhouse in the coffee shop is an understatement. Alex disappears in a sea of other needs because there is no playbook for managing issues or prioritizing orders. The app is supposed to add convenience for everyone, but it’s been more hassle than help.

Proactively break the bad news

Positive result

A shift manager is running point and takes accountability. They apologize, explain the situation, and bump Alex to the front of the line. The shop asks for customer feedback on how the app is performing, and Alex shares her experience about the finicky app in their survey.

Negative result Neutral result Neutral result
Coffee illustration
“Your team needs to know your products inside and out to provide a great customer experience…training helps your team speed up resolution times and provide personalized service.”
Read more on our blog

LEVEL 2

Rise of the winos

Illustration of wine

At lunchtime, Alex hunts for the perfect birthday gift for her best friend. She clicks on a great photo of a wine picnic on Instagram and skims the site. She learns she can customize a wine set through a well-known wholesaler. Score.

The wholesaler has tons of customer queries coming in on all channels.

Illustration of wine

How do they handle this?

Select a choice arrow

Deploy chatbots and self-service—this is their time to shine

Negative result

A chatbot pops up first, offering articles from the help center for research. Alex doesn’t want to spend that much time on this. On top of that, the chatbot is picky. It’s not returning any results because Alex spelled Bordeaux wrong, and it won’t autocorrect. Oh, wait—she remembers that her friend likes candles, so she decides to order those instead. *Alex leaves the chat conversation.

Provide an option for 1:1 service with an agent

Positive result

Alex isn’t into wine and is prone to tuning out any wine talk of “noses” or “mouthfeel.” No problem: A proactive chat pops up, asking Alex if she needs assistance. When she says with intentional all-caps, “YES I NEED HELP,” she’s connected to a live specialist. After a short chat, Alex takes their recommendation, and the specialist offers her a 25% discount since it’s her first purchase.

Negative result Neutral result Neutral result
Grapes illustration
“Your omnichannel strategy doesn’t, or shouldn’t, require you to offer all channels at once—especially if you’re not fully resourced for that.”
Read more in our Guide

LEVEL 3

No thanks, my dog is allergic

Illustration of dog food

On the bus ride home, Alex is trying to modify her monthly pet food subscription for her pup, Tina the Terrier. Alex needs to order her regular monthly haul and remove the doggie treats that gave Tina an allergic reaction. Never again, Tina.

The dog treats are yesterday’s news, but Tina’s usual is out of stock, too.

Illustration of dog food

How should the company manage the experience?

Select a choice arrow

Don’t hassle ”Tina” with the details

Negative result

Instead of saying they were out of Tina’s usual, the persistent push to buy other products left a bad taste in Alex’s mouth. And probably Tina’s.

Red flag the order and route Alex to in-stock items

Positive result

The red flag on Alex’s account caught her eye on that packed bus. She appreciates the attention to detail, especially since she told the company about the allergy and stated how carefully she’ll be filtering for ingredients in the future. She logs in and takes them up on the allergy-conscious suggestions for her upcoming order.

Negative result Neutral result Neutral result
Dog illustration
Customers ranked “the company proactively reaches out to provide support” among the most important aspects of a good customer service experience. Not being upfront or transparent rubs customers the wrong way.
Read more in our CX Trends Report

LEVEL 4

Feed me

Illustration of dog food

Once home, Alex is exhausted and unmotivated to cook dinner, so she decides to order takeout. She opens her favorite delivery app to see what’s on the menu tonight. She wants something that can be delivered in less than 30 minutes because hangry doesn’t look good on her.

Picking what to eat for dinner can be the biggest challenge of the day.

Illustration of dog food

Which of these situations deserves five stars?

Select a choice arrow

The app displays everything Alex filtered for, plus some helpful bonus options in the area

Negative result

The bonus options failed. You almost had her—Alex clicked on one because it looked new and exciting, but it missed both filters entirely when she looked closer. Mistakes happen and luckily Alex was paying attention. Rule number one, don’t trick your hangry customers.

The app displays what Alex filters for—a short delivery window and vegetarian options—and that’s it.

Positive result

Spicy Eggplant Thai is hers in 27 minutes and counting. Although only a handful of options showed up on the app, each met Alex’s filters. Also, you haven’t seen hangry until you’ve met Alex, so don’t complicate things with “helpful” bonus options.

Negative result Neutral result Neutral result
Dog illustration
“We’re taking new tools and making the same mistakes—just making them digitally and making them faster.”
Read more on our Relate magazine

Got ’em all!

Nothing personal, but it’s just not about you as a business.

Hannah Conclusion

It’s about your customers and their experience with you across all touchpoints. Workshop your ideas and assume more work must always be done to fill gaps in the experience. Put yourself in your customers’ shoes and then try your best to break your own stuff on their behalf.

You don’t need a magic wand to turn frowns upside down. A surefire way to win the game of CX is by centering their needs (not yours) all the way through.

Learn more about the kinds of experiences customers crave in the Zendesk Customer Experience Trends Report 2020.

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