If you want to build a better solution for your clients, you need to map out the end-to-end customer experience that touches on their entire problem. In most cases, software companies take a niche approach to their work. What is the one problem we’re trying to solve, and how can we solve it better?
While this strategy isn’t flawed, it can be a little misguided, particularly in the B2B world. When dealing with customers, it’s easier to focus your attention on a single problem. For example, individuals want an easier way to communicate with their friends and family. For businesses, however, issues rarely exist in a vacuum.
Because each problem is part of a larger whole, software developers should take a more comprehensive approach to their systems. While it’s not feasible for every company to create an all-in-one package, it’s still helpful to understand what the end-to-end customer experience should look like.
In this article, we want to share the benefits of taking a holistic look at the end-to-end customer experience and see how it can transform your business model.
Your Client’s Ideal End-to-End Customer Experience
To help us see why this tactic is so valuable, we’ll look at a specific industry – contracting. On the surface, contracting companies can be relatively small operations, but once you get into the minutiae of it, the business incorporates so many different elements. A contractor has to source materials from various places, organize staff to work on different sites, manage invoices and proposals, along with a dozen other things.
From a software standpoint, you can’t zoom in and look at one part of that equation only. If your software helps make invoicing easier, then what are the steps your clients are taking before and after sending that invoice? What should the end-to-end customer experience be?
What data needs to be entered to ensure that the invoice is accurate? What processes have to be in place to verify that the invoice was sent, money was received, and that the client was happy?
By looking at the elements surrounding the individual problem, you can understand your client’s needs much better. In the end, you can develop software that makes the transition easier from step to the next, which will make your brand more valuable.
Getting Feedback Along the Way
There is a prevalent problem in the world of software startups where the people in development aren’t reaching out to the end-user. So, they have ideas of what the user will want or need, but doesn’t validate those ideas until the product launches.
Instead, you need to get client feedback at every step of the development timeline, as well as after your product goes live. The benefit of this action is that you may start by focusing on one problem, but over time, you add more and more features that create value for your clients. After a while, you can have a much more comprehensive system that will ensure success for both your customers and your business.
Overall, the customer experience is multi-faceted, so your software needs to be as well. If you want to find out more about how this approach works in the real world, check out the SaaS CX Show here. We talk with Tom Coffin, CEO of Simply Reliable, a company that makes Smart Office. His team has created a holistic program for contractors that has changed the game in a lot of ways.