The customer is king. A principle widely adopted in the business world, which provides a breeding ground for the same old corporate strategies and affects customer loyalty in B2B.
But if we treat customers like royalty, it can create a sense of distance and formality. This is why shifting from the traditional Business-to-Business (B2B) approach to the modern Business-to-Human (B2H) paradigm is crucial.
Customers are human beings with needs and emotions and want to be treated as such. That’s why it’s essential to focus on the customer experience. Companies that invest in it can significantly reduce customer churn by 10 to 15 percent and increase the win rate of offers by up to 40 percent, according to a McKinsey study from 2017.
To create an outstanding customer experience, companies need to understand their target audience and their needs and challenges. As part of our implementation-oriented digital consulting we have developed a multi-stage approach that helps to gain a deep understanding of the target group to create optimized user experiences that inspire (human beings).
A deep understanding of the target audience is key to a good user experience (UX). Especially in the business context, not only the customer itself but also the end customer needs to be considered. Therefore, we start with a thorough analysis, which includes workshops where we familiarize ourselves with existing products and systems and take a closer look at competitors. We analyze what a new system could look like, our target audience’s specific requirements, and how we can improve the user experience.
Using a Customer Experience Board, we identify and evaluate challenges of the current and future system. Here, the needs and goals of the target group become apparent and are subsequently prioritized. This allows us to determine how we can solve pain points and improve – not just for, but with the customer.
To better understand the target audience, we conduct comprehensive user research. We analyze the needs of end users and evaluate the results with our clients. To optimize internal workflows and create a unique customer experience, we develop archetypal personas and concrete user stories specifically tailored to each user’s requirements. We also draw on (purchase) experiences from the private sphere. This is becoming increasingly important, particularly in the B2B sector, as demonstrated by the experiences during the coronavirus pandemic.
In the B2B environment, systems must be easy to use and operate efficiently. With a focus on intuitive usability, we design solutions that do not overwhelm users and allow them to quickly find what they need. Consistency is critical here: excellent user experience combines design and functionality, especially in information and navigation elements that users are familiar with, such as the “Next” button in the bottom right. We rely on wireframe models to visualize the project early in our agile development and work cost-effectively. In the course of the design process, the wireframing model is developed in different levels of detail (low and high-fidelity prototypes). All models allow us to implement ideas at any time and validate them directly.
In the final step of our UX journey, that’s precisely what happens: we evaluate the prototype. Are all requirements met? If not, we take the time for iterations again to further refine our concepts and ensure that the solution meets the needs of the end users. Only when user satisfaction is guaranteed through continuous monitoring and adjustment of the user experience based on data and feedback we move on to implementation. And even after that, it’s all about staying up-to-date and improving our systems.
junior marketing manager
senior ux designer
McKinsey & Company (2017): Finding the right digital balance in B2B customer experience.
McKinsey & Company (2022): The state of customer care in 2022.
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