Despite the cost-of-living crisis spurred on by rising energy prices, research suggests that only 23 per cent of consumers are likely to change their energy suppliers within the next year. This is in stark contrast to almost half (48%) of consumers who regularly changed suppliers prior to 2021 to seek the best deals. The reason for this is because wholesale energy prices are likely to remain high for now meaning that suppliers have little room to compete on price. Despite this general reluctance to switch, the majority of consumers would still consider changing their suppliers due to poor customer experiences. Good customer experiences leave a positive impression on the consumers’ mind and can also be a significant factor that compels them to stay with their existing suppliers.
3 ways in which suppliers can greatly enhance the experiences of their customers
- Build frictionless journeys: Suppliers need to ensure that they understand customer journeys in their entirety. Focussing on specific customer touchpoints will not provide a representative view of the customers’ end-to-end experiences with their suppliers. By having a holistic view of the customer journey, suppliers can pinpoint where the critical pain points lie and ensure that these are fixed before they result in disappointed customers. Research shows that billing and payments, communications regarding managing usage and outage and complaints handling journeys are significant contributors to customer satisfaction. These are journeys that suppliers must ensure are fully optimised for the needs of their customers.
- Personalise the experience: Suppliers can leverage the data collected through customer interaction to nurture their relationships with their customers. This will allow them to offer personalised recommendations to specific customers and their individualised needs. For example, by better understanding customers’ energy consumption habits, suppliers can advise their customers on how to save money on their next energy bill by becoming more energy efficient. This is particularly important at a time where the cost-of-living crisis is taking hold of the nation.
- Empower through self-serve: By allowing customers to take the initiative and choose their own terms of interaction with suppliers, it empowers them to be more engaged with suppliers which can positively impact their overall experiences. Self-service portals where, for example, customers can view their latest energy usage/bills, make payments and log complaints, is a great way to enhance experiences by giving them the convenience of accessing services 24/7 from the comfort of their own living room.
Our Six Pillars of Customer Experience Excellence have been borne out of over a decade of customer experience research spanning all major sectors. It provides a framework through which we can assess an organisation’s current customer experience capabilities and help them design future experiences for their customers underpinned by leading industry best practices. Get in touch with us if you want to learn more.