With the advent of technology, the modern world has become heavily dependent on the internet. Records show that there were about five billion online users as of early this year, representing 63% of the human population. Consumers now prioritize businesses that have an online presence because of the convenience they offer.
To cope with customers’ expectations, many businesses have now streamlined their operations using automation tools and apps. These tools have helped improve efficiency by simplifying and optimizing business processes.
They also go hand in hand with creating a unique and positive customer experience. Here are four other ways apps enable small businesses to provide better value to their customers:
1. They Transform Customer Service
It’s estimated that online sales reached $4.9 trillion worldwide as of 2021, and the figure is expected to grow 50% more by 2025, reaching around $7.4 trillion. This upward trend in online behavior indicates that innovation and customer service are interdependent.
With the rise in customer expectations, it’s actually a safe bet for businesses and service providers to rely on digital tools to boost service delivery. For instance, a locksmith can use locksmith software to schedule and dispatch jobs, automate workflow, and streamline operations.
Essentially, apps provide small businesses with an interface geared to offer instant and optimal customer care. As a business owner, here are some of the ways you can translate value to your clients with the use of apps:
- Your customers get the opportunity to serve themselves: Apps enable your clients to access certain services on their own. Customers can easily set up an appointment or make a booking from where they are.
- Order management: Your employees have faster access to inventory information so they can attend to clients’ requests or orders faster.
- Safer data storage: Your customers’ private information, like payment details, are safely stored in the cloud.
- A simple and immediate buying option: You can initiate and complete purchase transactions effortlessly. For instance, free tools from Jobber allow you to send customized templated quotations and invoices to clients.
- An avenue for customer feedback: Through app capabilities like automatic customer follow-up, you get to connect with your buyers and learn about their experiences with your business.
- Eliminate manual errors: Apps ensure you constantly share accurate information with your consumers. It eliminates invoicing mistakes, which can happen with manual methods.
2. They Allow Fast and Direct Communication With Customers
Effective communication is one of the things that significantly influence customer satisfaction. Fortunately, with the use of apps, the interaction between businesses and customers has indeed changed for the better.
Companies now have a direct way of getting in touch with individual customers, understanding their needs, and building long-lasting relationships.
Below are some of the ways these platforms can help you as a business owner to ensure better engagement with your customers:
- Ensure faster and more effective information sharing: You can notify your clients about new products or services, their benefits, prices, payment methods, and any other updates.
- Provide instant customer support: Apps offer an additional channel for continuous online support. For instance, through the live chat feature, Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) options, and an easy-to-use help center, you can remain in constant communication with consumers and always respond to any of their concerns.
- Integrate in-app feedback mechanisms: Through widgets, surveys, rate my app, and reviews, customers can provide context-sensitive feedback based on their experience and current needs.
With a reliable online presence, you can develop an increased connection with your buyers and provide your brand with a human touch.
3. They Provide a Direct and Personalized Marketing Channel
Apps serve as direct marketing channels for small businesses. They foster brand awareness, allowing your customers to continuously interact with your products and services even in a mobile environment.
The good thing is that, with apps, you can learn more about your audience and optimize your digital marketing strategy through a targeted campaign.
Businesses can collect user information from the entry points and user sessions. Some of the aspects to analyze include:
- Browsing habits
- Online shopping behaviors
- App usage, including customer’s favorite hours
- Engagement levels
After examining this data, you can divide your target audience into approachable groups based on shared interests and determine what type of content, product, or service works best for each. Thereafter, you can deliver specialized content and the best offers to every user category.
You may also use geo-targeted push notifications to target potential customers near your retail store. These messages are incredibly relevant and personal, and they ultimately improve efficiency.
4. They Boost Customer Loyalty Programs
Apps provide an effective channel for building and inspiring customer loyalty. It’s estimated that repeat consumers spend 67% more than new clients, which is highly attributed to loyalty programs.
As an entrepreneur, you can offer benefits to your customers to motivate repeat purchases and also appreciate their presence in your business. Below are two ways apps can help foster customer loyalty:
- Offer instant rewards to customers for placing an order: Apps have entirely transformed how reward programs work. They provide a singular platform where reward points can be collected and redeemed for discounts, freebies, or insider perks. This integration of loyalty programs with order and pay has created a more robust client experience compared to any other media.
- Encourage social sharing: Apps are integrated with other social media sites like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. With just a tap, customers can share content and products with their online communities. Sharing increases the association of customers with your brand. To acknowledge your customers, you can always reward points for social sharing or referrals.
Loyalty programs keep your customer base engaged and happy. In addition, this is one way to show your appreciation to new customers from the moment they make their first purchase.
Apps provide a myriad of benefits to small businesses that are looking to grow their customer base.
They enable business owners to deliver better value to their customers by improving service delivery, offering effective communication, providing a direct marketing channel, and transforming loyalty programs.
With a seamless purchase experience, a customer is more likely to become a returning or frequent buyer.