Launched six years ago, Watermark Consulting’s annual Customer Experience ROI Study illustrates why, according to the firm’s founder Jon Picoult, “every company _ public or private, large or small _ should make differentiating their customer experience a top priority”.
The study, by the firm which describes itself as a customer experience consultancy, tracks the cumulative total stock returns for two model portfolios _ comprised of the Top 10 (“Leaders”) and the Bottom 10 (“Laggards”) publically traded companies in Forrester Research’s annual Customer Experience Rankings.
According to the report’s latest edition, leaders outperform the broader market. They generated a total return that was 35 points higher than the S&P 500 Index. Laggards were far behind. Their total return was 45 points lower than the market.
Watermark states that “a great customer experience, and the internal ecosystem supporting it, can deliver tremendous strategic and economic value to a business, in a way that’s difficult for competitors to replicate”.
So why do the laggards “continue to subject their customers to complicated sales processes, cluttered websites, dizzying 800-line menus, long wait times, incompetent service, unintelligible correspondence, and products that are just plain difficult to use”?
Watermark says leaders embrace these basic tenets:
- They aim for more than customer satisfaction
- They nail the basics and then deliver pleasant surprises
- They understand that great experiences are intentional and emotional
- They shape customer impressions through cognitive science
- They recognize the link between the customer and employee experience