Why the customer experience matters
Existing in today’s business world requires much more than simply producing a product or service for people to buy. So much of it comes down to creating a great customer experience (CX). In fact, the vast majority of buyers are willing to pay more for a better customer experience and more than 62% of companies are recognizing the impact customer experience has in contrast to competitors.
With a large part of shopping and customer interaction happening digitally, great customer service has evolved beyond discounts or quick product fixes. Now, it is more about giving people a good feeling about your business and nurturing customer loyalty — with the end goal being that customers spread their love for your brand by word of mouth to friends, family, colleagues, which ultimately concludes with more sales and more loyal customers.
To stand out among the competition, your brand and business need to create and deliver more customer-centric experiences and campaigns as it gives your target audience a compelling reason to stay and become repeat customers.
That said, in order to deliver this customer experience, you need to combine data from your online and offline initiatives. You also must create an emotional connection between your brand and customers, putting them at the center of your marketing strategies. To give you an idea of how to accomplish this, we’ve rounded up some of the best customer experience examples.
Check out these unique customer service experience examples below.
7 of the best examples of great customer experiences
1. Microsoft: customer-centric innovation and engagement
In the early 2000s, Microsoft was experiencing a hitch in its growth until its new CEO came in and led the change from a bureaucratic corporation to an innovative collaborator who focused more on its partnerships and customers.
Microsoft began partnering with B2B companies and sharing best practices to build new products, which not only gave Microsoft the boost it needed, but it democratized access to technology and empowered businesses and teams with the type of technology they truly needed to get the job done.
They also began to invest more in their social media presence. Today, Microsoft has a strong presence on Twitter with multiple accounts dedicated to various themes, which include careers, development, events, security and customer service. Through social media, Microsoft customers can interact and engage with just about every aspect of the brand.
CX lesson: It’s easy to accomplish this type of approach by simply asking questions through polls, surveys, chats, forums or asking for feedback. Each of these can encourage engagement, which can lead to innovation or changes that keep the customer involved and coming back for more. Just remember to respond to comments on social media in a timely manner. The quicker you respond, the more satisfied customers will be and the more they will feel that your business values them and their feedback.
2. Tommee Tippee Cups: 1-to-1 marketing
Small but mighty, one of the best examples of a great customer experience comes from Tommee Tippee Cups.
Through social media, the company stumbled upon a father looking for a replacement of a limited edition Tommee Tippee sippy cup for his son, Ben, who has severe autism. The sippy cup was the only one Ben would drink from, as such, the father created a hashtag #cupsforBen. The result was a viral tweet, amassing thousands of likes, retweets and shoutouts, which of course caught the company’s attention.
The company ended up announcing they would be creating a limited run of the discontinued cup, especially for Ben.
CX lesson: By paying attention to your business’ social channels, you can turn listening to your customers’ feedback into truly memorable customer experiences.
3. AirBnB: Personalized user experience
AirBnB provides a great example of personalized customer experiences. By recognizing the two different types of customers in their industry — those looking to rent out their place and those looking for a place to stay — AirBnB has made a simple search experience for both audiences on the same platform.
Through their home page, you can either become a host or book a place to stay. Additionally, with consistent branding and design across their mobile app and web browser, they’ve made this marriage between UX and customer experience even more seamless.
CX lesson: When customers lead, you follow — and understand that your customers do not exist within a binary. There might be other important use cases your company offers. Be on the lookout for what those might look like.
4. McDonald’s: In-restaurant customer experience
When McDonald’s started suffering a decline in sales, they decided to turn things around not by changing their marketing tactics, but instead by focusing on customer experience.
They started by making an effort to listen to their customers and providing them with a more streamlined experience — like the one customers had been requesting. Based on customer feedback, McDonalds created a simpler menu, improved order accuracy and started using higher-quality ingredients.
McDonald’s also took the time to upgrade store interiors for a better look and installed digital, self-order kiosks and table service, resulting in lower wait times for customers. As these changes were implemented, BTIG projected a sales growth of 4.1%. And in turn, McDonald's is able to set themselves above competitors by elevating their overall customer service experience.
CX lesson: Listen to what your customers are asking for — and then implement changes as best you can.
5. Adidas: Digital customer experience
In recent years, Adidas has been fine-tuning its digital experience by committing itself to better customer experiences
One of its biggest initiatives came about as it recognized customers were shopping online more. Adidas ended up pouring resources into a simple and tailored-to-fit customer experience by personalizing its messaging and content based on data insights and user engagement.
The company also began listening to customer feedback. This introduced them to a desire for more sustainable goods from customers. The company began producing shoes from ocean waste and sold over 1 million pairs in just one year.
CX lesson: By investing in CX, you can change your company’s growth trajectory and even establish yourselves as a leader in your field.
6. Southwest Airlines: Empower employees
Southwest Airlines is another top example of successful customer experiences.
The company doesn’t simply invest in its customers but also its employees. It has long been ranked as one of the best places to work as they’ve taken the time and effort to build a work culture that puts their employees first.
With a team-based environment and strong core values, the company reminds its employees to enjoy their work and to take pride in what they do. This roundabout approach ends up leading to long-lasting customer service experiences. With happy employees who take pride in their jobs, you can find endless examples of when those employees have gone above and beyond for their customers.
A specific example occurred in 2011 when a man booked a last-minute flight to see his 3-year-old grandson one last time. Unfortunately, due to heavy traffic, he arrived late at the airport, getting there after the plane was scheduled to leave. However, the pilot had waited for him before taking off. Recognizing the humanity of its customers has helped Southwest Airlines become a leader in successful customer service.
CX lesson: Your business can succeed just as well as Southwest by giving your employees the pride and satisfaction to work with your brand, which can ultimately lead to happier customers. In fact, brands that use emotional connections tend to outperform their competitors by 85% in sales.
7. Casper: Omnichannel customer experience
A truly unique approach to perfecting the customer service experience can be seen through mattress company Casper.
The ship-to-your-home mattress company created a free chatbot just for insomniacs. By simply texting “Insomnobot3000” from their mobile phones, customers can talk to the chatbot about whatever is on their mind and have a real conversation.
But the Insomnobot3000 isn’t just for insomniacs to get a little peace of mind to help them fall asleep. Through the chatbot, Casper is able to collect mobile numbers and send promotional offers and discounts. And courtesy of the Insomnobot3000, Casper pulled in $100 million in sales in just the first year of the chatbot’s launch.
CX lesson: Make it easy for customers to connect with you on their channel of choice. And furthermore, you need to humanize the customer experience as you do so. Because, after all, we all sleep on mattresses, but who or what audience can you tap into and elevate the customer experience for?
Make your customer experience a memorable one
By looking at these seven great customer experience examples and the approach each company took to improving its customer experience, you can find your own solutions to help your business outpace the competition.
So much of the customer experience entails listening to and collecting feedback from your target audience and then using that feedback to incite change. Whether this change happens in your products or services — or even a design flaw in your website or app — it can result in better UX and CX experiences for your customers. And in turn, result in happier customers.
But don’t forget! Listen to your employees as their perception of your brand can also influence their own interactions with your audience, for good or bad.