Take the time to BE your customer

Every now and then you’re reminded of something so critical to your customers’ experience that you can’t believe you ever forgot about it.

In my case, I was doing some work for my carsharing client, Flexicar. I was checking out some new potential parks in a parking garage and reviewing the signage of a competitor. So, never having been to this car park, I had to use the tools our customers have available to them – in this case, our website & the map of parks…and I discovered that the publicly available information was NOT ENOUGH to find the park. The floor and bay number were NOT available. We did send more detailed information in a booking confirmation email, but what if they didn’t have that with them…customers rarely doing exactly what you ask!

So by putting myself in the customer’s shoes I inadvertently identified a pretty big issue – by updating the information on the site, it will ensure a smoother experience for new customers visiting that site, will cut customer service phone calls and will generally create a more positive experience for the customer. And it’s the ultimate zero budget marketing fix – it will cost NOTHING to do and take only a few minutes of my time.

I have been preaching “put yourself in your customers shoes” forever – but this proves it something you need to do in ALL facets of your business, over and over again. I find that with many online businesses I visit, it’s IMMEDIATELY apparent there are obvious – and quick – improvements that could be made to improve a customer experience, and improve sales.

So if it’s been a while since you took a step back and tried to BE your customer, then I can only recommend giving it a go today. OR even better, sit behind someone who hasn’t used your site and watch their experience with your online business (or physical space). I guarantee you’ll identify several things you didn’t even think were issues.