When customers make purchases personally or as part of their job remit, what they really want in exchange for their money beyond clear value is a big spoonful of TRUST.

We live in a relationship economy, it is no longer about meeting expectations, it is the above and beyond, the experience of the journey from education to decision – transaction and the after. 

Now more than ever trust is not only the most valuable asset a company can have but it is also the most easily broken.  No matter how innovative or cutting edge your offering might be, at the very minimum you must meet the expectations you have set for your customer. If you want to be a profitable company then delivering to expectations is merely not enough – you must create a memorable, talked about experience.

Engaging customers is a trust-based journey of consistency. If you are not paying attention to the next evolution of customer centricity you will lose out and find yourself in a position of cutting back to squeak by and not delivering to move ahead. For many it is a challenge, most notably the solution/service-based organisations. Trust is both rational and emotional and when it is considered in the context of a customer experience approach it allows for multi-channel touch points, giving the customer the ability to navigate and chose their journey.

Don’t under estimate the need for the balance of cost versus when considering customer experience however never ever under estimate the bottom line value of trust, but always remember that past experiences are the drivers behind rational trust and when that experience is negative it takes at least 3 to 4 positive experiences to move past it.

The digital age has brought the advantage of having options available at the customer’s fingertips. Customers hold all the power now with web and mobile devices affording them the opportunity to change brands without a second thought and voicing their opinions about it through social media. So how does a company gain and keep the trust of the customer in an age when change is so easy? By respecting the fact that the customer does have a choice.  It does not matter if it is B2C or B2B customers are people, and it is their personal experiences with your product or service that is the key.

The leader in trust is Amazon, they have gone to great effort to ensure their experience is as seamless as possible, leading to millions of shoppers and billions in revenue.  By creating a market leading experience Amazon compels shoppers to be loyal customers, make repeat purchases and tell all their friends about it.   Price isn’t the sole reason millions of people shop at Amazon. They do it because Amazon offers the best eCommerce customer experience.  It is no secret that Amazon has gone to great lengths to examine and create an experience that has led to millions of loyal shoppers.

Price isn’t the sole reason millions of people shop at Amazon. They do it because Amazon offers the best eCommerce customer experience.  It is no secret that Amazon has gone to great lengths to examine and create an experience that has led to millions of loyal shoppers.

Make social/digital medias part of your customer experience journey – BUT NOT the entire journey.  Use it as an advantage to reach customers quickly, create that personal interaction.  Then get back to basics, pick up the phone!!! When companies are willing to make the investment, they see that the trust equation does minimises risk and uncertainty.

It is not difficult to overlook the link between customer experience and trust.  Many companies limit their view to marketing and sales and miss the connection. Taking customers on a journey rather than a sprint (for the quick sale) creates long-lasting trust.  The long-term relationships that this represents leads to references (word of mouth) and a greater share of wallet.  At the end of the day it’s about priorities, if the company only cares only about the bottom line this will be visible in the customer experience. 

To improve the customer experience every company must start with the employee experience (EX).  If you can’t talk the talk – you will repeatedly stumble when trying to walk the walk! Yet amazingly most companies don’t understand how intertwined CX and EX really are.  Every organisation needs to recognize that their customer experience should never exceed their employee experience. Creating a customer-first culture starts with creating an employee-first culture. The loyalty of the employees to deliver the company’s approach to customer experience is paramount to success.

Companies have one chance to make a great first impression. Creating a customer-first culture makes all the difference in how a brand is perceived by its customers.

There are a lot of moving pieces to the earning the trust of your customer through their experiences with your organisation.   Making improvements to any one of them can be a major adjustment for the company. To ensure that the experience is designed to order organisations need to understand themselves, understand their customers and what the ideal experience should look like. 

Ask your customers, find out what you do best, why and how then replicate it. But more importantly find out what you do wrong and fix it.  After all, the definition of trust is a firm belief in the reliability, truth, or ability of someone or something. “relations have to be built on trust”