Whether your business is big or small there are things that you can do to provide a consistent experience. Consistency will sets small businesses apart allowing you to offer the individuality and personalization that is expected from a small business and the comfort, predictability, and trust typically found with large organizations.

Consistency starts with the first interaction that a prospective client has with your organization. This first interaction is typically the Website. Here you set the tone for how all future interactions are going to be. Once you have set the stage you need to make sure that this tone carry’s forward into all future interactions.

What can you do?

One of the keys to this experience is to make them as simple for the customer as possible. You need to ensure simplicity in your websites menu choices and call to actions. Try limiting your call to actions to one per page so visitors are not overwhelmed and know exactly what is expected of them at each stage of the process.

Now that you have set the stage, future interactions need to continue in the same manner. Keep the same tone regardless of what form that interaction takes, whether it’s your emails, newsletters, or printed marketing materials.  Limit your call to actions to one per piece and make it clear as to what action that you want the reader to take. When a customer contacts you directly, by phone or email, they need to be experiencing the same tone.  Provide the same level of value that they have come to expect from the website, newsletter, email campaigns and print material. Social media needs to follow the same structure as well. Together this reinforces the organizations brand and builds trust.

Personal interaction needs to be consistent as well.  This is a bit harder to control, as we all know each person has their own personality, as well as good and bad days, that can affect an interaction.  Because of this, it is important that you provide scripting for how to answer the phone so that each customer is treated the same way… consistency builds trust.  Provide training on how to handle common client interactions.  This helps to ensure that no matter who the client is or who is working with them, they will have the same level of consistent customer service.

Why is this so important?

Customers have changed. They no longer are looking for just a “good” product.  It has now become the experience that they are looking for. Whether that is the feeling they have when they use the product, the feeling of being part of an exclusive “club” or “tribe”, or the way you make them feel through each stage of the buying/user/ownership process.  These feelings are now what is leveraged when customers discuss the reputation or trust with a company. Positive feelings and trust are developed through consistency.  Consistency brings loyalty.  Loyalty brings revenue.

Additional Resources:

How to Create a Consistent Customer Experience (and Why You Should)  https://100mba.net/how-to-create-a-consistent-customer-experience-and-why-you-should/

7 Steps to Delivering a Consistent Customer Experience   http://journeys.getsynap.com/7-steps-to-delivering-a-consistent-customer-experience

Why Consistency Matters in Customer Experience   http://customerthink.com/why-consistency-matters-in-customer-experience/