The experience your customers have with your business in a brick and mortar setting as well as online can dramatically affect how they perceive your company. This can also affect their loyalty to your brand, your ability to generate referral business, how effective your marketing is and more. Approximately 43 percent of small business owners surveyed believe that improving the overall customer experience and overall retention is a top strategy to bolster profitability. Understandably, you want to focus your attention on improving the overall customer experience that your company delivers, but you may be wondering how you can accomplish this. There are a few excellent techniques and strategies that you can adopt today that can have powerful results on your business and that your customers may enjoy.

Add Value

One of the best ways to improve the customer experience is to add value throughout the process. For example, ASEA is a healthy beverage company that is featured on Crunchbase, and it uses online video marketing to educate consumers about their total body health. Videos also explain how this energy drink promotes total body health. This education empowers customers to be healthier while also encouraging them to make a purchase. You can also add value through enhanced product or service features, providing usage tips and more.

Use Analytics Thoughtfully

Most small business owners have access to detailed analytics, and these analytics give you great insight regarding consumer behavior, trends and more. Some small businesses use analytical details to bombard or spam consumers, but others use the information to improve their products and services and to add convenience, value or something else to the overall experience. Avoid alienating your customers with marketing that does not add value in some way. Listen to what your consumer want and need by reviewing analytical data in order to determine how to best steer your company into the future.

Make the Opt-In Process Fast and Easy

Many small businesses use an opt-in marketing campaign. While it is beneficial to ask your customers to opt into receiving marketing messages from your business rather than to spam them with unsolicited marketing material, the opt-in process can be confusing and time-consuming. When it takes too long or is too frustrating, some interested consumers may simply walk away rather than complete the process. This equates to lost potential sales for your business. Take time to simplify this process online and at the cash register. Avoid asking customers who want to opt into your campaigns for an unnecessary amount of information. For example, simply asking for their email address may be all that is needed to start taking advantage of an opt-in feature. Ensure that this entire process can be completed within seconds for the best results.

Thank Your Customers

If you are not currently thanking your customer regularly for their business and loyalty to your company, you may be turning them off. Customers should be thanked at the time of purchase verbally, but you may also want to go a step further. For example, you can thank customers who have opted into your marketing messages by offering them special deals and promotions. Encourage their active participation in your company to further promote brand loyalty. After they make a purchase, offer them a discount on their next purchase.

The experiences that your customers have with your company are not limited to the sales process. Everything from your marketing messages to your post-purchase follow-ups should be well-planned and carefully crafted so that they deliver the best results overall. At all times, focus your attention on improving the customer experience by learning more about what they need and by refining the experience you provide to them.

Author's Bio: 

Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer and mother of two from Sacramento, CA. She enjoys kayaking and reading books by the lake.