Many businesses spend a lot of time and resources finding things to add to enhance their customer experience. Of course, a good customer experience boosts sales and business success. But, sometimes, what you cut out matters as much as what you add.
One of the most significant hurdles you should eliminate in your business is customer friction. So stick around to understand customer friction and how to identify and stop it.
Customer Friction Explained
Customer friction is anything that stops clients from purchasing a product. It can also make them hesitate to buy your goods or services.
Usually, companies use sales and marketing funnels to encourage clients to buy things. But, some points in these funnels may discourage clients from choosing to buy from you. These points that impede a client’s buying decision constitute customer friction.
Customer friction can happen online, over a call, or physically at a brick-and-mortar business. Whatever the circumstance, conflict makes customers feel angry and frustrated. Thus, it leads to a poor customer experience.
Clients may experience customer friction in different ways during their buying journey. Discovery friction may occur because of stock shortages and a site that loads slowly. It makes customers distrust your company.
Purchase friction happens because of long wait times and limited payment methods. Purchase friction is standard both online and offline.
Clients can encounter challenges when using your product or trying to return it. Such difficulties are a form of post-purchase friction.
How Do You Identify Customer Friction?
You must first identify customer friction in your business before you try to reduce it. Some signs of customer friction in your business include:
- Negative online reviews and many customer complaints
- Low or no customer engagement
- Low perception of your business by the public
There are many ways to identify customer friction in your business. One way is to put yourself in your customer’s shoes as they go through your conversion funnel. One of the technologies you can use for that is session replay.
Companies can use session replay to identify pain points that lead to friction. Session replay is a technology that lets you watch precisely how an end user interacts with your website or app. The technology allows you to pause, rewind, and forward the replay.
With session replay, you experience a customer’s session precisely as they experienced it. Thus, it is easy to identify the causes of customer friction in your business. For example, it can help you see that an unresponsive button was the cause of the conflict.
You can also understand your customers’ experiences through stakeholder interviews. Other methods include customer surveys and evaluating your website metrics.
How Can You Reduce Customer Friction?
After identifying customer friction, the next thing you must do is find ways to resolve it. Unfortunately, there’s no one universal method to determine customer friction. But there are several measures you can put in place to reduce friction. Some of them include:
Keep Employees Happy
Human interaction is one of the best ways to get the attention of your clients and market your business. That’s partly why almost all websites prompt customers to contact them. Your employees are at the frontline when it comes to dealing with customers.
Make sure you motivate your employees. Motivated employees are happy employees. Happy employees make for satisfied customers.
Motivated employees will serve your customers better, resulting in a smooth interaction. Thus, customers will be more satisfied, and there will be a reduction in customer friction.
Also, train your employees to interact appropriately with customers. Well-trained employees will have the right tools to represent your business.
Improve Your Website
A website allows for e-commerce and increased sales. So, you don’t want to skimp on it. But, if you do, you may have a site that loads slowly and is difficult to navigate. Such a site will lead to customer friction and thus a poor customer experience.
Customers who experience website performance problems have a lower chance of purchasing from the site a second time. Make sure you have a mobile-friendly website that loads quickly. Also, ensure that the site is accessible for visitors to navigate.
To make your site easy to navigate, arrange it nicely and eliminate all the clutter. Generally, ensure the interface is attractive to encourage customers to show more interest in your brand. Also, keep up with the latest tech trends to keep your site relevant.
Keep Your Design Consistent
A website design that’s all over the place will confuse customers. Confusion bars clients from spending time and money in your business. You can eliminate such friction by keeping your design clear, clean, and consistent.
Also, follow industry standards in modeling your website. By following industry standards, your site will have the correct layout. A good design will make it easy for consumers to learn about your business and move on to making a purchase.
Make Value-addition a Priority
You may have a fantastic design and good sales and marketing funnels, but your business doesn’t add much value. A lack of value addition will bar customers from purchasing from you. Thus, it will create customer friction.
In this case, an excellent way to eliminate friction is to focus on value-addition. Adding value to your products or business will show customers you wish to help them. Thus, it creates customer loyalty and helps improve customer conversion.
There are two significant ways to add value to your products. You can either include a new feature or get rid of problems.
Make Your Process Simple
Ideally, the internet helps to reduce global boundaries. It’s advisable to make your process simple enough such that a large part of your audience will understand it. Doing so will help you reach more people without contributing to customer friction.
Simplifying your process also means having an efficient checkout process. A lengthy checkout procedure will discourage customers from completing their orders. In addition, many customers will likely go to another brand if the buying process is too challenging.
Make your checkout process clear, simple, and short to reduce customer friction. You can also automate or cut out some fields on your payment forms to simplify the process.
Customer friction keeps clients from going through your conversion funnel successfully. Reduce friction by implementing strategies that enhance customer experience.