This article was originally posted by Ameyo.com.
There has been a lot of buzz around Customer Experience (CX) emerging as the key differentiator and driver for growth and sustenance in consumer industry. But, what exactly is customer experience and what makes for a great customer experience? Gartner defines it as “the customer’s perceptions and related feelings caused by the one-off and cumulative effect of interactions with a supplier’s employees, systems, channels or products.” Forrester Research defines it as: “How customers perceive their interactions with your company.” Clearly the two basic elements of the definition are perception and interaction.
To simply put CX is how a customer perceives the brand through all the interactions across the customer life cycle. In the modern digital era, customers are well-informed and hyper connected than ever. With a growing number of communication channels, brands are increasingly turning to technology platforms as a way to improve customer experience across channels.
Customer service is a part of the whole gamut of customer experience . Customer service can be defined as the support provided by a company to customers who are facing issues while purchasing or using its products or services. On the other hand, CX is the overall perception of a brand as a result of comprehensive interactions throughout the buyer’s journey. Moving on from the basic definitions, let’s understand what is the difference between customer service and customer experience?
Customer Service is reactive – it only comes into play when a dissatisfied customer contacts the company. The business can only take action once something goes wrong, and not beforehand. CX on the other hand, is proactive – a business can take action to optimise the customer journey before the customer becomes dissatisfied.
CX is a holistic approach that goes beyond customer service department and is the responsibility of everyone in an organisation. Unlike customer service which focuses on single specific interaction at a time, customer experience takes into account the overall customer journey by building long term relationship with customers.
Brands need to understand that seamless customer service delivered consistently over a period of time will eventually impact the customer’s perception about the brand. Thus, making it easier for the customers to access customer service will ensure better customer experience and boost customer loyalty.