The internet, globalization, and other modern factors have burdened businesses with more competition than ever before. It’s much more difficult to set yourself apart than it used to be.
That makes customer experience especially important. When competitors have similar price points and product quality – which is so often the case in today’s crowded business world – it’s the company that offers the best customer experience that will succeed.
But how do you improve customer experience? What can you do to make your customers happy and keep them happy?
Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. These five tips will help:
#1 Get Your Field Reps To Their Destinations On Time
No one likes to wait. Arriving late is one of the worst things you can do for your reputation.
You don’t still plan your routes with pen and paper, do you? That’s a recipe for disaster. Route planning involves many moving parts, including traffic, weather, construction, and customer availability. It’s so complicated that the routes you come up with on your own are bound to be flawed. Your field reps will end up running into obstacles, such as traffic jams and road closures. They’ll get lost. Ultimately, they’ll fall behind schedule and take more time than necessary to visit all the stops on their routes.
You need software to plan the best routes. Route optimization software can take everything that affects your routes into account and produce efficient routes for you in just 30 seconds or less. Your field reps will have everything they need to show up on time, every time.
Showing up on time keeps your customers happy, which makes it less likely that they’ll abandon you for one of your competitors. Also, in addition to helping you retain your current customers, an improved customer experience will help you win over new customers, as happy customers will naturally recommend your business to their friends, family, and other people they know.
#2 Accommodate Customer Requests
Customers can, and often do, change their minds. For example, a customer might call you up at the last minute to tell you they want to change the time of their appointment.
That’s another reason why you shouldn’t use pen and paper to plan your routes. If you planned your route manually in that situation, you couldn’t accommodate the customer’s request. There just wouldn’t be enough time to figure out a new route.
If you had route optimization software, though, accommodating this request would be easy. It would only take you 30 seconds to change and re-optimize the route. Also, if a customer wants your employee at their address ASAP, you can use route optimization software to find the field rep that is closest to the customer at the moment and send them over immediately.
#3 Keep Your Customers In The Loop
You can’t simply tell your customers to expect your field rep to arrive anytime. Do you expect them to just sit there, twiddle their thumbs, and wait all day for you?
The best route planners have a portal that customers can use to check on the real-time location of the vehicle they’re waiting on. All the client needs to do is log into the customer portal to access the information.
Want To See For Yourself How Route4Me Can Boost Your Profits?
Whether you want to slash the time it takes you to plan routes for your drivers, increase the number of stops they can make, or keep your customers satisfied knowing that your drivers show up on time… Route4Me helps you achieve that!
The best route optimization software also comes with a customer alerting and notification feature. You can set up this feature so that a text or email message is automatically sent to the customer when your field rep is about to arrive. They’ll appreciate the notice!
#4 Get To The Bottom Of Every Dispute
Imagine this scenario: a customer claims that your driver never arrived, while your driver says that they did visit the customer. Who’s telling the truth? Do you believe your driver and alienate the customer, or do you believe the customer and alienate your driver?
Route optimization software makes it easy to solve this problem. Such software come with a GPS tracking feature that shows you where your field reps were when they were on the road. Whenever there’s a dispute, you just need to look at the tracking data to see what went down. If the records show that your employee was never in the customer’s vicinity, you’ll know you need to discipline your driver and apologize to the customer.
Using paper slips to collect confirmation signatures can lead to messy disputes, as paper slips are easy to lose. The best routing programs have an eSignature feature, which allows your field reps to collect signatures with their mobile devices. This will help you keep everything organized.
#5 Use Data To Improve Your Business
A route planner’s reporting and analytics feature can show you:
- How your employees perform in the field
- How many clients were actually visited vs. how many meetings were planned
- How much time employees spend with clients on average
You can use this data to assess and improve your business. You’ll be able to accurately identify your weaknesses and strengths. You’ll be able to see if you’re satisfying your service-level agreements. Overall, you’ll be able to make more informed business decisions.
What steps have you taken to improve customer experience? Do you have any questions about this article? Feel free to let us know in the comments section below.
Finally, answering these three short questions will ensure that you understand how route optimization software can take customer experience to the next level:
- How can late arrivals by your field employees affect your business?
- Why does keeping your customers in the loop improve customer experience?
- How can you manage customer complaints fairly?