Digital Agency

How to Deliver an Excellent Customer Experience Whilst Balancing Commercial Pressures

Sam Hannah

July 31, 2023

In today’s competitive business landscape, delivering an excellent customer experience has become more important than ever, with customers having higher expectations and demanding personalised, seamless interactions across all touchpoints. However, achieving this while balancing commercial pressures can be a challenging task for businesses. The key lies in finding the right balance between profitability and customer satisfaction, as you cannot have one without the other.

Customer experience encompasses every interaction a customer has with a brand, from the first point of contact to post-purchase support. It involves understanding and meeting customer needs, providing exceptional and accessible service, and creating positive emotions and lasting impressions. A great customer experience not only builds loyalty and advocacy but also drives revenue growth and long-term success.

On the other hand, commercial pressures refer to the financial constraints and demands businesses face in order to remain competitive and profitable, including tight budgets, sales targets, cost-cutting measures, and the need to streamline operations. While these commercial factors are essential for sustaining a business and keeping the shareholders happy, they can sometimes conflict with the goal of delivering a more user-focused experience.

So, how can businesses navigate this delicate balance? Here are some strategies to consider:

Customer-Centric Culture: Foster a customer-centric culture within your organisation. This starts from the top, with leaders championing the importance of customer experience and instilling it as a core value. When employees understand the significance of providing exceptional service and how it contributes to the company’s success, they are more likely to prioritise it, even amidst commercial pressures, wherever they may come from.

Data-Driven Insights: Leverage customer data and analytics to gain valuable insights into customer preferences, behaviours, and pain points. By understanding your customers better, you can tailor your offerings and experiences to meet their specific needs while optimising resources, allowing you to strike a balance between personalisation and profitability.

Agile & Efficient Operations: Streamline your operations to enhance efficiency without compromising customer experience. Look for ways to automate repetitive tasks, improve response times, and eliminate bottlenecks in your processes in particular, as by optimising your operations, you can allocate resources more effectively, freeing up time and energy to focus on delivering that customer experience the user deserves, whilst balancing those commercial pressures.

Empowered Employees: Invest in training and empowering your employees to handle customer interactions effectively, by providing them with the tools, knowledge, and authority to make decisions that benefit the customer. When employees feel empowered and confident, they can resolve customer issues efficiently, opening the door to all the potential benefits of an enhanced customer experience.

Continuous Improvement: Embrace a culture of continuous improvement, regularly seeking feedback from customers and adapting your strategies accordingly. Actively listen to customer complaints, suggestions, and reviews to identify areas for enhancement. This iterative approach allows you to refine your customer experience over time, aligning it with commercial goals and delivering greater value to your customers.

Innovation and Differentiation: Look for innovative ways to differentiate your brand and stand out from the competition. By offering unique and memorable experiences, you can create a lasting impression on your customers. This, in turn, can drive customer loyalty and advocacy, even in the face of commercial pressures.

Collaboration and Partnerships: Seek collaborative opportunities and partnerships with like-minded organisations that share your commitment to customer experience. Particularly with agencies, the breadth and depth of knowledge and experience that an outside organisation can bring will save time in getting to the right solution, and relieve some of the pressure on your own team. As long as the agency utilises the right discovery process, their involvement will only be a boon to the solution and your team. In terms of costs, the time saved versus the amount of work completed by the agency will far outweigh that which could be completed by an in-house team.

It’s important to remember that delivering an excellent customer experience should not be viewed as a trade-off against commercial pressures. Instead, it should be seen as a strategic imperative that, when properly executed, can lead to long-term profitability and sustained growth. By finding the right balance between customer-centricity and commercial goals, businesses can thrive in today’s competitive marketplace while delighting their customers at every step of the journey.