Building trust between your brand and your customers is vital in today’s world. Now more than ever before, it’s crucial to constantly strive to improve your business’ reputation and provide a service that your customers value.
Think about it…
- We trust Amazon to deliver our parcels the next day, guaranteed;
- We trust Domino’s to deliver a steaming hot pizza for the time slot you’ve chosen;
- We trust Spotify to notify us when our favourite artists release new music;
- And we trust Netflix to recommend shows most relevant to our choices.
We pay these companies repeatedly to provide us with a service we know and trust.
But in a world of digital and social upheaval, how can companies within regulated industries build trust with their customers?
Ensure your site is secure
What’s one quick way to lose your customers trust in your brand? One of your customers receiving spam emails from your company, or realising you have sold their information to a third party without their consent, or even worse, not having a secure website and having that data stolen from you?
Roughly 30,000 to 50,000 websites get hacked every day. And those numbers are continuously growing.
If you want your customers to trust in your brand, then the security of your customers’ data should be your top priority.
It almost goes without saying, but when customers invest their trust in you to appropriately store, manage and use their data, it’s crucial to have a “failure is not an option” mindset. This will increase budgets and reduce time to market for certain products, but what’s the alternative, a €20m or 4% turnover fine from the ICO and long-lasting reputational damage?
Cloud hosting services like Microsoft Azure enable companies to protect their data, apps and infrastructure quickly, with built-in security services that include unparalleled security intelligence to help identify rapidly evolving threats early – so you can respond quickly. Microsoft Azure provides confidentiality, integrity, and availability of customer data, whilst also enabling transparent accountability.
Provide experiences that scale to meet customer demand
How many times have you struggled to get onto a website during the release of concert tickets, to book an online grocery delivery slot, or to purchase the latest games console, you’ve got to the page, and it has crashed due to a colossal influx of customers all eager to enter their card details for the same product… It’s frustrating right? It damages the way in which you once looked at the brand… (no bitterness over narrowly missing out on a Playstation 5 with John Lewis earlier this week… Promise!)
Now imagine you are at home; you are about to cook your evening meal and your electricity goes off. You try to call your supplier but there’s a long queue to speak to a customer advisor, you go on to your supplier’s website and it’s gone down due to the influx of customer traffic, and when you finally are able to access the site, there’s no information about the power-cut, no explanation, no messages about when your service will resume, you’re none-the-wiser about when you’ll be able to eat, or turn on your heating.
By using a digital experience platform like the Episerver DXC or the Sitecore DXP, you ensure that your customers have an “always-on” digital experience awaiting their needs, with the elasticity to surge to meet significant spikes in customer demand.
Our customer, Electricity North West’s Episerver DXC solution enables the website to meet such spikes and scale appropriately. During storms like 2018’s Storm Emma, Electricity North West’s website experienced a significant increase in customer traffic due to power outages where site users increased by 263%. The Episerver solution scaled to demand and efficiently coped with the increased level of web activity, negating any interruption for their customers, and providing them with the information they needed within seconds.
Make accessing vital information simple
Your customers want to be in the know when it comes to the services that they pay you for. They don’t want to be sat in long queues to speak to customer advisors regarding why their power has gone off, why their water supply has stopped, or when someone’s coming to fix the burst water pipe in their street. They want you to proactively provide information around these issues, saving them time, and keeping them up to date with how you’re going to resolve those problems for them.
Web applications such as the online “report a problem” tool we have built for Wessex Water are a great way to update your customers on issues within their area, providing them with information they can trust.
Accessed from the ‘report a problem’ section of Wessex Water’s website, users have the option to ‘check for known issues in my area’ or ‘report a problem’ – for example, a water leak, problem with water supply or problem with taste or appearance. The tool then steps them through a logical action tree showing options dependent on previous answers given. This enables the relevant information to be displayed, reducing information fatigue, increasing confusion, and increasing first-time resolution. The customer can locate the problem with a postcode or account number and upload photos, before the system returns a reference number.
The tool integrates with Wessex Water’s customer website, interactive map and Microsoft Dynamics CRM, and proactive customer ‘job tracker’ tool. This uses the data collected by the Report a Problem tool to keep customers updated regarding the status of their issue.
The tool has logical dynamic hand off options, taking into consideration the time of day. This ensures, for example, that journeys are routed to a warm voice during those stressful unplanned issues that might happen late at night. The tool will also route to live chat or continue to be a self-serve live integrated interaction depending on the urgency/nature of the issue.
To find out more about Wessex Water’s ‘report a problem’ tool, watch episode 5 of our #WhatIf webinar where with discuss “#WhatIf… you could improve your CSAT scores just by doing things differently?” with Customer Experience Transformation Expert, Alex Russell-Rutherford.
Offering a choice of communication channels
Little more than a decade ago, consumers had three options if they wanted to contact a company – over the telephone, a postal letter or via a fax machine… And they were not available around the clock to any customer who required help.
Thankfully, those days are gone.
According to research from Statista, the average Briton has access to more than nine connected devices.
Now customers have a wide range of choice when it comes to communicating with the brands they love. Communication channels include SMS, chatbots, live chat, social media, Google Home and Amazon Alexa to name just a few – the list is almost endless.
Utilising a select group of digital channels can also help you to attract new customers, and to improve leads and conversions. When you’re able to connect with your existing and target audiences in ways that fit their unique requirements and preferences, they are more like to sign up for more information, purchase your products and trust your band.
But choosing which channels to utilise requires careful consideration. If you require assistance in selecting the right channels to meet your customers’ expectations, we can help.
Baking accessibility into your service
Providing your customers with accessible digital solutions is more important now than ever before. As digital becomes part of almost everyone’s daily lives, most of the population are relying on digital channels to manage their finances, purchase their products, pay their bills and buy their groceries. It’s never been more crucial to ensure that all of your customers, including those living with disabilities, are able to use your digital channels.
Digital accessibility is about designing and creating content which can be used by everyone, regardless of their cognitive or motor skills. It’s about catering to the diverse needs that your customers have, and enabling them to easily navigate, interact and communicate with your brand.
Not providing accessible digital solutions can open your brand up to a series of complications, including fines. From the 23rd September 2019, new accessibility regulations have come into force. This means that public sector websites now must meet certain accessibility standards and publish a statement saying that they have been met.
Similarly, commercial entities are also being encouraged to comply to WCAG 2.1 level AA and the RNIB (The Royal National Institute for the Blind) have brought legal action upon several UK companies who have not complied with this.
Beyond this, providing all your customers with accessible experiences that cater to every need is just the right thing to do and assures your customers that they can trust you to provide them with the services they require – regardless of their ability.
If you’re looking to build trust with your customers, but you’re at a loss when it comes to what channels, hosting services, accessibility services or web applications are the best to implement in order to provide your customers with a straightforward service that they know and trust, we can help.