The Customer Experience Imperative

One-click buying is the new norm in today's consumer economy.

3 misconceptions about customer experience that hold organizations back from driving organic growth

One-click buying, one-day delivery, instant-gratification in a personalized interface: B2C entities have reset expectations in today’s experience economy. Driven to provide a customized, optimized interaction with expert customer service, online retail behemoth Amazon engenders loyalty through a superior customer experience, attracting customers without relying on price.

Simultaneously, product differentiation is becoming harder. The ability to reverse engineer product innovations is closing the window on which brands known for their innovative products can remain ahead of the competition.

CX: Recipe for Success?
How can customer expectations reset by B2C help alleviate the increased difficulties in product differentiation? Customer experience can provide an opportunity for organizations to differentiate themselves from the competition and become a driver of organic growth. Yet many B2B organizations, especially those that have historically relied on and been known for product innovation, are reluctant to take the plunge.

“A differentiated customer experience is the most important growth lever for B2B organizations today.”

Are you skeptical of the benefits customer experience can offer your business, or of the processes necessary to innovate in this area? We’ll examine three common misconceptions that create roadblocks preventing B2B companies from benefiting from the customer experience revolution.

#1 It’s different in B2B: My customers are driven exclusively by price and availability
Some B2B organizations contend that unlike consumers, their customers are only concerned with product availability and price. Our research says otherwise. Through our work with B2B organizations we’ve seen how a differentiated customer experience is the most important growth lever for B2B organizations today.

Why? B2B buyers are people, too. And as consumers they are enjoying stellar experiences in the B2C world and comparing these with your customer journey. Whether you like it or not, the best of the B2C customer experience is serving as a benchmark across all industries.

#2 Moving Target: Customer experience is too subjective to effectively regulate
“What one customer might view as a differentiated experience, another customer may not,” points out Kurt Schroeder, Baker Tilly Growth Strategies principal. But these varying impressions are far from immeasurable.

In B2C, the leaders are relying on data to drive their customer experience. To return to the Amazon example, the online retail giant prioritizes the customer and uses search history to further customize product offerings. To succeed, B2B companies must follow suit, using data to determine customer experience. Our approach relies on empirical evidence, allowing for continuous testing and refinement and taking the guesswork out of engineering the experience your customers are looking for.

#3: Risky Business: It’s too risky to allocate resources towards unproven measures
Some business owners worry that catering to their customers’ whims could lead them down the primrose path. What if an organization-wide initiative proves ill-conceived or ineffective? Proper testing nullifies this fear. We recommend that our clients test their new experiences before launching them, to determine which will make a real difference in the market and where to allocate resources accordingly.

A differentiated customer experience can engender the kind of customer loyalty B2B businesses may not have seen in decades. Instead of scrambling to compete on price, Baker Tilly can help you educate your entire organization on creating a customer experience culture, ensuring consistency and garnering real results. Contact us now to get started.

Looking for more customer experience insights? Download the white paper “Differentiating on Customer Experience: Are You Different Where it is Important