Do you know some of the greatest challenges your prospective and current clients face? If you aren’t aware of them, this is something both your marketing and sales team experts must dive into to drive your business forward.
75% of organizations state enhancing client experience as their top priority. Impeccable brand service is the key to unlocking customer happiness. You need to unravel your clients’ pain points to position your product or service as the best solution and guarantee their long-term satisfaction.
Pain points, however, are as diverse and varied as your prospects. So, your business growth is dependent upon your capability to recognize and foresee the multitude of twists and turns of your customer journey and leverage all means available to ensure effective and timely support whenever and wherever needed.
Let’s dive right into the specific types of customer pain points, the methods of their identification, and a variety of strategies and approaches you can apply to address them and make your company indispensable for your prospects.
What are the pain points?
Pain points are specific and persistent problems experienced by your customers or prospects in the marketplace. Basically, pain points meaning any issues or obstacles your clients face along their journey vary from individual to individual.
Getting to the roots of your customers’ pain points may take thorough consideration, research, and putting yourself in their shoes. All the efforts and time invested, however, definitely pay off.
Why is knowing customer pain points important?
There are a number of benefits of understanding the problems your clients face. You will modify the way you communicate with them and shift your focus from the solution itself to using it for bringing relief and advantage to your prospects.
Some of the effects that naturally follow are greater consumer satisfaction, increased referrals, enhanced retention rate, and revenue boost. A study conducted by Harvard Business School indicates the direct correlation between customer loyalty and profitability, stating that an increase in retention rates by just 5% results in a profit rise of 25% to 95%. Moreover, Deloitte research clearly indicates up to 60% higher profitability of customer-centric companies over product-centric ones.
In fact, about 76% of consumers believe that businesses should understand their needs and pain points. Taking into account customer reviews and identifying their pain points translates into improved consumer experience and satisfaction, which is considered as an essential factor for their buying decisions by 73% of prospects.
Therefore, the genuine and profound awareness of customer pain points allows you to connect with them, establish relationships of trust, and build an impeccable brand image, which helps you propel your business forward.
Identifying the real pain points, however, is not always an easy and straightforward task to do. You need to know the four basic categories of pain points to be able to categorize those that are specific for your niche and your prospects.
4 main types of customer pain points
Business pain points are usually detected as individual problems but they’re more conveniently analyzed as belonging to several broader classes.
Let’s explore these basic types of customer pain points.
1. Productivity pain points
This is where the clients expect a smooth experience when trying to reach out to your business. They look to maximize efficiency and avoid wasting time on the process. Cumbersome manual processes, redundancy in the purchasing process, and inconvenience in product usage are all examples of productivity pain points.
2. Process pain points
Your customers are facing problems with their current processes and structures and want to have them streamlined. Examples of process pain points include complications related to submission of applications and connecting to the right department or ineffective communication between teams.
3. Financial pain points
They entail the issue of spending excessively on a current service, which causes financial strain and necessitates spend reduction. The financial pain points of clients can involve a high cost of cumulative purchases and membership fees or subscription plans.
4. Support pain points
Clients aren’t provided with the support they need at a critical stage of their journey or sales process. Customer support is one of the most vital functions of a business and when entrepreneurs fail to deliver the proper solution for customer pain, it affects client loyalty and retention. Some support pain points include delayed response, unavailability on preferred channels, and lack of product knowledge.
While this categorization method is a good way to start, it’s not as simple as it seems because customer needs are complex and layered. So, you need to view your clients’ pain points holistically and offer your brand as the ultimate solution to not only one specific pain point but as a reliable partner that can fix multiple problems.
Identifying customer pain points has never been easier
Now that we’re on board with what pain points are, the next step is to point them out. There’s no single and omnipotent approach, though. Your best strategy is to apply a combination of the following procedures so that you can maximize the efficiency and precision of customer pain point identification.
Conduct qualitative customer research
It is crucial to know exactly what your customers’ expectations and needs are. Carrying out qualitative market research includes jotting down client experiences and assessing information regarding their pain points.
For instance, when assessing customer service metrics, you can’t quantify their emotions or responses while interacting with your brand but you can evaluate how fast your team works to address queries or how satisfied your clients are with the offered solution. Thus, you’ll be able to make data-driven effective decisions that will help you improve your customer service, address their pain points more efficiently, and achieve your business goals easily.
You may schedule the good old-fashioned grab lunch or a drink method to get insights into some of your clients’ experiences with your product or service. Another way to do it is to organize informal meetings to hear how your clients are doing. If they don’t feel the pressure of a formal setup, they might be more open to sharing their problems with you.
Conduct qualitative sales research
Your sales reps are at the forefront dealing with the battle of the hearts and minds of your prospective clients every day, so they offer precious feedback on your prospects’ pain points.
Take note so as not to misinterpret operational challenges for pain points. For example, when your sales reps fail to reach targets they might be tempted to express their concern about the quality of leads or lack of qualified leads given to them. While this is a genuine complaint, it doesn’t relate to customers’ pain, so the trick is to channel out the noise to get to the real issue.
One way to obtain sincere feedback about your clients’ or prospects’ pain points is to record conversations between them and your sales reps. This gives you valuable open-ended feedback.
You could also get your sales team to put down their observations after every sales pitch that was unsuccessful. The evaluation could consist of questions such as:
- Why did the prospect turn down the product or service?
- Did the prospect compare our commodity with an adversary’s? If so, in what context did they compare?
- What were the issues put forward by the prospect?
- What would have prevented the prospect from turning our brand down?
Use live chat to find customer pain points
Customers love to chat, so using live chat is an awesome way to identify their needs and the problems they are experiencing. The main benefit of adding live chat to pinpoint your clients’ pain points is that your team can derive every issue and offer timely fixes. You can easily set up a live chat option on your company website and use it to benefit both your clients and your business.
Here are a few tips to make the most of your live chat process:
- Always take initiative and be proactive rather than reactive.
- Avoid keeping clients waiting.
- Always keep chat etiquette in mind such as using positive language.
- Handle one client at a time and avoid hasty responses.
- Keep track of customer service metrics.
- Use emojis and gifs to keep conversations humorous and fun.
- Ask clients to rate their chat experience.
- Ask for customer feedback.
- Teach your team how to use live chat- don’t assume they know.
- Don’t end a chat prematurely- follow-up chats do make an impact, too.
- Get into your customers’ shoes and go through the customer journey
What better way to identify your clients’ needs than take their place! When you practice empathy, your service interactions can be smoother and clients are always happy to pay more for a customer experience that is on an epic level.
How to fix customer pain points?
Once you’ve located your clients’ pain points, it’s time to devise strategies on how to fix them. The plan will vary depending on the pain point and what solution your organization can offer.
1. Start with the common pain points that require little effort and expenses
There are several pain points that you can solve with very little investment such as rude customer service reps. This is a no-brainer. You can research what clients perceive as rude and train your representatives on how to handle frustrating clients.
Other pain points that need little effort include putting clients on hold or having them repeat themselves because they are not being listened to. Zappos, known for its high-quality customer service, has addressed such pain points by answering 80% of its calls within 20 seconds. Focusing on customer experience and viewing each interaction as an opportunity to increase consumer satisfaction have established their impeccable brand image and a billion-dollar empire.
2. Give your customers a self-service option
You can let users perform their tasks by themselves without any assistance from your organization. Thus, they will be able to take control and discover solutions to their own problems. This is a way to reduce the cost of customer interactions in terms of money and time alike. Moreover, your team will be freed to do the jobs that obligatorily require their attendance and devote more time and care to clients that are truly stuck with their issues.
To enable your self-service software to fulfill its purpose effectively without causing additional ado, you need to take all possible advantage of knowledge management systems. You have to build a solid knowledge base to let your customers benefit from the self-service option. The majority of companies successfully apply this solution by offering informative and helpful sections on their websites so that users get valuable tips and guidance on utilizing the product or service. TextMagic, a business text messaging service, provides one of the great examples in this respect by building a help section, where users can find all the information they may require presented as ‘How To’ articles, Video guides, FAQ, etc.
3. Educate your customers on how to deal with their pain points
It’s important to ensure your clients understand how you solve their pain points. The resources to be used for marketing can consist of data about your organization’s feedback availability and the range of solutions you provide. In addition, you can set up a useful and helpful SEO-optimized blog section designed to provide more detailed information on your products and services.
The more information you have, the more customers are engaged in finding the answers. They spend time looking for information on your website and other portals, boosting your site traffic and brand’s visibility.
4. Provide your customers with multiple and flexible communication channels
Delivering consistent customer service across a multitude of channels, such as phone, in-app, website, social media, etc. empowers your team to eliminate a wide range of pain points, which is a sure way to increase satisfaction. The British universal bank Barclays, for example, provides consistent omnichannel service to its clients enabling interactions through all popular communications platforms.
You may choose to use an omnichannel platform with a flexible and well-rounded approach for customer communications. By this, you may offer a range of client communication options that suit different occasions including emails, chatbots, calls, contact orms, live chat, WhatsApp, or even using software to host monthly webinars to communicate new company developments that’ll positively impact them.
For example, chatbots ensure you are available 24/7 to help your clients with any pressing issue they have at the moment. You could also take advantage of selecting and utilizing some of the communications platforms that offer a variety of free tools to businesses and highly customizable options, integrating different communications services, such as SMS, calls, and email.
Offering consumers, a one-stop solution for all assistance needs, queries, requests, and complaints streamlines the operation of your customer support team. They can deal fast and effectively with all requests and complaints from one place avoiding switching platforms and channels.
Eliminating pain points and providing top-notch customer support builds satisfaction and healthy relations. Moreover, an improved brand image and the strong position of your business in the competitive market will ensure your resources for maintaining the same high quality of your customer services in the future.
5. Improve your support team motivation and performance
You should also organize support team training sessions to ensure that they are up to speed with some notable skills every customer service rep needs to have.
Politeness, empathy, and patience payback are the greatest emphasis. Your customer service or sales representatives have to deal with all kinds of clients and some of them can be really annoying or confused. Patience and empathy are your team’s most valuable assets and virtue in such cases.
With the market landscape being so competitive, you can’t afford to put your feet up and overlook the real experiences of your clients and prospects. Customers appreciate getting over-the-top services that are frictionless and exceed their expectations.
To provide such services you must first learn their pain points, map out solutions, and put the solutions into play. Because customer satisfaction and happiness turn into loyalty, and your customers’ loyalty is the key to your prosperity.
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