The pandemic has forced most companies to rethink how to sell. Not even considering how to improve sales, but simply keeping the business going. With traditional channels closed by obligation, in a few months digitization has taken hold of a good part of the organizations. But it has only been the prelude to a more complex path. Users have also changed their shopping habits during the health emergency. As shown the fourth report Client connected status, produced by Salesforce, now demand more transformation and more purpose. 93% of customers said that the way an organization acts during a crisis shows whether it can be trusted.
Factors such as empathy, personalization, convenience and digital transformation are essential in relationships with users. The product itself is no longer a differential factor capable of boosting sales. For example, 80% of the study participants said that the experience is still as important as the products. And 71% added that they pay more attention right now to the corporate values of companies than a year ago. Given these data, especially at a time when uncertainty reigns, brands have the opportunity to reinforce and rebuild trust with both new and loyal customers.
As each individual faces change and uncertainty, empathy and support for customer needs, expectations and challenges are as critical as providing a satisfying and connected experience that eliminates unnecessary actions. According to the study, which collects the views of more than 15,000 consumers from 27 countries, including 650 from Spain, 54% of Spanish customers feel that the sales, customer service and marketing departments do not share information. “These crises not only affect the digital efforts of companies; they also expose the urgency to win and build trust, while serving and serving all stakeholders, ”says Simon Mulcahy, Salesforce Innovation Director.
Digital behavior is here to stay. Customers are developing new habits that will last over time. As digital engagement grows, customers expect companies to digitize their operations to facilitate high-impact, multi-channel interactions. This is largely based on the use of personal information; and users demand greater transparency and care. “As our physical world has shrunk, the digital demands that companies have faced for decades have reached a tipping point. Customers demand the convenience of digital technology and expect brands to innovate more than ever. They are not just looking for more personalized experiences, but more empathetic ones, ”Mulcahy suggests.
Social, economic and ecological challenges have come to the fore. Society asks companies to do their part of the work to correct mistakes. Lack of attention to social responsibilities threatens corporate results. According to the report, 87% of Spanish clients affirm that the role of companies in this field is changing. Companies are subjected to a more in-depth analysis, in areas that their boards of directors had not considered. Although many assume that these feelings are found only among the younger generations, they are actually present in all age groups.
“The massive shift to digital channels is not the only challenge business leaders have to deal with. They also have to listen and respond to clients’ demands for empathy and understanding of their needs; improve the offer with innovative products and services; and a fundamental rethinking of the role of companies in society ”, highlights Vala Afshar, Salesforce Digital Manager.
The growing calls for companies not to just defend their financial interests are more than words: they are a call to action. In accordance with the study, 89% of users expect companies to clearly express their values - and 90% expect them to demonstrate them. Consumers live with products, services and experiences from a variety of sectors in their daily lives, where the personal and the professional, the digital and the physical, the essential and the complementary intersect. When they do, their criteria are constantly influenced and the distinctions between sectors are often blurred in their mind. Organizations that seek to differentiate themselves must look beyond their immediate competitors and analyze whether their capabilities stand out from other sectors.