CEOs and Customers

Customers are in charge now.

July 30 2010 by Bob Donnelly


CEOs seem to forget that they are customers too!

CEOs will abandon a poorly designed web site just as fast as their customers. They will also lose patience with errors in billing or ordering processes.

You would think that every CEO would like to have a site, like Amazon, that is efficient, streamlined and personalized.

Your web site is now the first touch point for many new customers, not the store nor the sales person. The primary sales tool now and for the future is a compelling and easy-to-use graphically sophisticated site.

The sales dynamic has shifted from the company dictating what they offer to the customer, to the customer now dictating to the company what they want. The web and email have empowered customers with greater latitude over how they interact and on what terms the process takes place.

The good thing about this is that customers can now share their Internet shopping experiences with others like themselves through their social networks. This wealth of information can improve the online experience for both sides of the transaction.

As a matter of fact if you think about it, today’s online consumers have it pretty good in that they have a seemingly infinite number of choices and helpful user reviews that not only rate the products but also the ease of the transaction. On the other hand, sellers have an abundance of real time customer feedback that can help them refine their products and services. If sellers do a careful analysis of all these customer reviews it can help them adjust their pricing, bundle promotions and increase revenue.

Today, time is of the essence. Look at how fast you can find out about anything using Google. Like Google and other search engines, the more self-service options your site offers along with easy to understand product demonstrations, the more likely you are to generate e- sales.

How many times have you found yourself just “clicking” to order something because it was so simple after the online promotion? Wouldn’t you like customers to do the same for your company’s products?

The shopping dynamic hasn’t changed. Customers are still searching for the most convenient and easy to use solutions for their problems or requirements. The experience has just transitioned from the store and/or salesman to the Internet.

As we embrace more mobile and wireless technologies, electronic shopping will become more of a natural part of our lives. For many, like those using Peapod to order their groceries, Amazon their books, e-books and much more, and a variety of other e-commerce sites, it already has arrived.

To keep up with the consumers’ rapidly evolving use of cell phones, iPads and other devices to shop for their needs, CEOs must be able to serve up their companies’ offerings in a format that is device and customer friendly.

Companies that can develop easy to use content-rich sites in real time and communicate across customer channels will be the winners of the battle for the customer’s mind. The easier it is for customers to access your product information 24/7 from anywhere will allow you to own a share of their minds, e-wallets or pocketbooks, like Amazon.

After all, customers must find all of their interactions with your brand to be user friendly, intuitive and, most of all, efficient.

The question is, have you developed a personalized, compelling and easy to use content-rich site? Have you visited your site and tried to use it lately?

If your e-sales aren’t increasing as fast as you would like, let’s start a dialogue on how to make it happen.

Email: rmdonnelly@chiefexecutive.net