Customers are always on the go and always connected. With the adoption of smartphones and on-demand services, more customers are looking to find ways to interact with businesses when it’s convenient for them.
From shopping and insurance to healthcare and financial management, businesses across all industries have found benefits in building deeper relationships with their customers by providing tools that allow customers the freedom to interact with the companies when and how they want.
Here are three reasons you should consider creating a customer portal if you do not have one currently.
The Convenience of Self-Service
One of the more obvious benefits of providing a portal for your customers to use is the convenience of self-service. Should a person need to update their payment information, address, or wish to view their payment history with your business, customers can enjoy the freedom of doing this when it’s convenient for them. In addition to this, these common tasks reduce the demands on customer service, so such representatives can focus on more unique incidents should they arise.
Exclusive Marketing and Notifications
Another great benefit of having a personal area for customers is the ability to personalize the marketing they receive. E-commerce services have known this for years by examining a customer’s journey from email marketing, communication preferences, abandoned shopping carts, and customer wish lists. However, non-commerce websites tend to miss a few opportunities that could help provide more value to their customers.
Exclusive content and deals for events are a great incentive for customers to create an account. Furthermore, a communication preference center allows visitors to customize the types of content they receive and how they receive it, instead of simply opting to unsubscribe. In addition to such, your communications also become notifications within the customer’s area in the same way LinkedIn and Facebook provide messages and notifications.
Exploration for a Mobile App
Lastly, the features and utilities available within a customer portal provide an excellent starting point for building a mobile application for your customers to download. Although having a mobile-optimized web experience can be considered table stakes, providing the information in a custom application provides customers the ability to easily access the information they need, when they need it, from anywhere through their phone or tablet without having to type in any URLs or search terms. After establishing those utilities, companies can include additional features to the application that can provide even more assistance for your customers.
While many companies have customer portals that provide a number of features and conveniences to their customers, many do not. By assessing your business and your customers, the need for a customer portal can provide an enhanced customer experience through the personalized attention provided to them.
There may be technical concerns and you may find it more beneficial to build such exclusively through a mobile application instead of enhancing your website; however, at the end of the day, every business should consider providing a portal to their customers if they don’t already have such.
Do you have portals you use on a daily basis? Let us know what features get you to engage most in the comment section.