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Customer Expectations: Types, Strategies, and More

Customer Expectations: Types, Strategies, and More

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Businesses strive to create a world where every customer’s expectation is not just met but anticipated, where providing support is not just about customer satisfaction, but about creating lasting moments that linger in their customers’ minds.

It is no secret that each exchange between a business and a customer serves as a springboard for creating powerful impressions with customers. However, do you know what your customers want?

With customers continuously adjusting their expectations and having access to seemingly endless options and information, businesses are now forced to understand customer service expectations better than they ever have before, modify their brands, and support their operations accordingly to establish enduring customer relationships.

This blog is a guide to decoding customer expectations. Let’s explore where anticipation meets fulfillment, understanding prevails, and the customer’s voice is crystal clear.

Customer expectation examples

What are customer expectations?

Customer expectations refer to the standards and quality that customers anticipate when interacting with a company, utilizing a product, or reaching out to a customer service team.

These expectations will vary, depending on factors such as:

  • Previous experiences
  • Marketing messages
  • Industry norms
  • Type of company
  • Customer location

It’s important to understand that customers have high expectations of your business, and failing to meet their expectations can result in them choosing a competitor.

This means that you only have a limited number of opportunities to make a positive impression. Meeting or exceeding customer expectations is crucial for building customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Types of customer expectations

Customer expectations can be categorized into various types based on different aspects of customer interactions with a product, service, or company. Here are several common types:

Explicit expectations

These expectations are the fundamental needs that customers express to you directly throughout their interactions with you. When a customer chooses to purchase from you, they have defined expectations.

These expectations may include:

  • Operational costs when using the product
  • The quality of customer service
  • Timing for delivery of updates or new products

If you sell computers, for instance, a buyer may enter your store with specific requirements, such as a certain price range or set of features they are seeking in a laptop.

Implicit expectations

Implicit customer expectations refer to the fundamental presumptions that consumers have about your company, service, or product.

Customers have these expectations even though they aren’t explicitly stated.

Before their initial engagement with you, customers’ implicit expectations are frequently shaped by:

  • Online research
  • Word-of-mouth recommendations
  • Prior interactions with related companies

Interpersonal expectations

These are assumptions or beliefs customers hold about how they will be treated by your support team when they contact customer support.

Interpersonal expectations could include:

  • Clear and respectful communication
  • Trustworthiness and transparency
  • Active listening by support agents
  • Empathy
  • Good conflict resolution skills

Digital expectations

These are expectations that customers have about their interactions with your business online, be it via social media, interactive PDF documents, interactive assessments, mobile apps, or websites.

It is crucial that these channels be simple to use and offer insightful information about your company, its goods, and its services.

For example, if you are a restaurant owner, customers would expect the following:

  • A website that is simple to navigate
  • A clear view of your online menu with prices
  • Quick and reliable channels to inquire about your services
customer expectation examples
Use Multiple Channels to Offer Insightful Information

Dynamic performance expectations

This relates to how customers anticipate your product or service to develop over time to meet their changing requirements.

Companies should revise their customer expectations in response to market changes and remain proactive by:

  • Considering competitor advancements
  • Realigning their business goals
  • Evaluating new products in the market

What are common examples of customer expectations?

Fully comprehending your customers’ needs and expectations is vital to the success of your business.

The following are some of customer  expectation examples that can help you gain insight into your customers’ expectations:

High-quality goods or services

Customers expect the products they purchase will meet their needs and perform as advertised. They expect products to be well-designed, visually pleasing, and free from defects or issues.

This expectation encompasses factors such as:

  • Durability
  • Reliability
  • Functionality

Exceptional self-service options

Customers expect self-service options that are user-friendly and built into the customer experience.
This enables customers to resolve their queries independently and find answers without the need to contact support.

According to a Higher Logic study, 77% of respondents indicate that they have a more favorable opinion of businesses that provide self-service options for customers in need of assistance.

Self-service options should meet and exceed customer expectations to enhance the overall customer experience.

Common self-service resources include:

  • Knowledge base
  • How-to videos
  • Customer portals
  • Manuals and documentation
  • Community forums

Trustworthiness and consistency

Customers expect businesses to be dependable and trustworthy. They want to be able to rely on the company to consistently deliver on its promises. This includes:

  • Delivering products and services on time
  • Maintaining established levels of support
  • Fulfilling commitments made during the sales process

Transparency and honesty in all activities

Customers want businesses to be forthright and transparent about their products, services, pricing, and policies.

They expect clear and accurate information to be provided up front, without hidden fees or misleading marketing tactics.

Customers appreciate businesses that are honest about any limitations or potential issues associated with their offerings.

Personalization and customization of customer experiences

Customers want experiences tailored to their preferences, needs, and interests. They expect businesses to understand their unique requirements and provide personalized recommendations, suggestions, or solutions.

This expectation extends to personalized communication, such as emails or targeted advertisements.

Outstanding experience with customer service teams

Customers expect and deserve to be treated with respect, courtesy, and professionalism at each touchpoint throughout their interactions with a business.

Furthermore, they anticipate support agents to be easily accessible, attentive, and responsive, providing timely and helpful solutions when they have questions, concerns, or issues.

managing customer expectations
Offer Quality Service to Your Customers

Availability of various communication channels

Customers expect ease of access and convenience when reaching out to businesses for support inquiries or requests.

This means they expect to be able to contact companies via the channels they are most comfortable with.

Omnichannel support allows customers to seek assistance through multiple channels, making it easier for them to connect and interact with support agents for faster issue resolution.

Some of the communication options that customers expect businesses to use include:

  • Social media
  • Website
  • Emails
  • Web forms

Strategies for managing customer expectations

Controlling client expectations is essential to preserving trust and satisfaction. Here are some helpful tips:

Gain insight and familiarity with your customer base

To meet the expectations of your clients, it is important to have a thorough understanding of their needs and interests. Basic demographic data such as age, gender, and location are not sufficient.

Therefore, conducting market research by communicating with both new and returning customers can be extremely helpful in understanding what they desire from your business.

By paying attention to their responses, you can gain a deeper understanding of what your audience wants and make sure that you are delivering it.

Offer omnichannel options based on customer preferences

Providing customers with multiple ways to get in touch with customer service teams can assist in delivering a seamless experience.

By merging different communication methods into a single unified workspace, customer service teams can handle all interactions seamlessly and respond to customer inquiries promptly and efficiently.

Set clear goals that align with meeting customer expectations

Your support teams, who interact with clients daily, have a big say in whether your business lives up to its customers’ expectations.

Establishing defined targets centered around meeting customer expectations is the best way to guarantee that your agents give your clients the level of service they need.

Additionally, make a list of the most frequently asked questions and searched topics on the company website and use that to implement an FAQ section or as the foundation of a knowledge base to enable self-service support.

Be proactive in your customer service approach

The greatest companies go the extra mile to find out deeper customer expectations when responding to complaints and take proactive customer service measures, such as:

  • Collaborating with the client to plan their customer success journey
  • Assessing past accomplishments and failed expectations
  • Handling any potential customer issues that may lead to failure in meeting expectations

Adopt a customer-centric culture

To ensure business success, it is crucial to adopt a customer-centric approach.

This means that the needs and expectations of the customers should be kept at the forefront of all business operations, from the first interaction with the customer to the follow-up after a purchase has been made.

By prioritizing the customers and catering to their needs, businesses can build strong and long-lasting relationships with their customers, leading to increased customer loyalty and business growth.

Seek your customers’ feedback regularly

Collecting feedback from your customers is a sure way to determine how well your business is satisfying their needs.

You should regularly send surveys that ask customers about their:

  • Level of satisfaction
  • Ease of access to information
  • Purchasing process
  • Product suitability

By analyzing this data, you can identify areas for improvement and keep track of your customer satisfaction score to ensure that your customers’ expectations are being met.

Find out how your competitors are exceeding customer expectations

Customers compare experiences between brands. This shapes their expectations when they begin considering your business and its products or services.

Focus on enhancing the area where your competitors are outperforming your business.

Whatever they’re doing the best, their customers will be very vocal about it in testimonials, case studies, and reviews. Use this information to improve your brand and gain an edge over the competition.

Why exceeding customer expectations is important

Higher customer satisfaction: Going above and beyond customer expectations leads to higher levels of customer satisfaction. Satisfied customers are more likely to return and recommend your business to others.

Repeat business: When customers are confident that your company will meet their requirements and expectations, they are more likely to return for future purchases.

Increases customer loyalty: Providing excellent service and exceeding customer expectations results in loyalty, positive recommendations, and sustainable business growth.

Yotpo research found that 59.3% of brand-loyal customers are likely to recommend their favorite brand to friends and family, which results in new networks of prospective customers.

Consistency in the quality of customer service significantly influences a customer’s willingness to pay, advocate for, and remain loyal to the brand.

Boosts brand reputation: When you exceed your customers’ expectations, they are more likely to share their positive experiences with others, which can have a significant positive impact on your brand image. You can establish a stronger reputation for your brand that will help you stand out in a crowded market.

customer service expectations
Use Positive Word of Mouth to Increase Brand Awareness

Gives your business a competitive advantage: When customers receive a level of service or product quality that surpasses their expectations, they tend to remember your business and prefer it over others in the future.

Reduces churn: Companies frequently deal with customer turnover or client churn. Meeting customer expectations stabilizes the customer relationship, lowers the risk of losing business to rivals, and promotes sustainable revenue growth.

Meet all your customers’ expectations

The foundation of any successful business is its ability to meet its customers’ expectations.

Get to know your target market and establish clear goals and standards that align with these expectations to ensure you completely satisfy them.

By exceeding expectations and actively listening to customer feedback, you can build a reputation for quality and become a leader in your industry.

Remember, satisfied customers are more than just a revenue source, they are advocates and influencers that can propel your brand to new heights.

Book a live demo to see how BoldDesk helps you understand and meet your customers’ expectations better. Start a free trial to explore its many features. If you have any questions about the product and its capabilities, contact the BoldDesk support team.

Do you have any additional ideas for how to exceed customer expectations that you think we should add to this article? Kindly share your opinions and suggestions in the comments below.

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