Very often, we hear about how customer is the most important person and that businesses exist to serve the customer.
But in reality, the customer is the most ignored person in the entire conversation.
Most websites, products and mobile apps are designed, developed and launched with utter disregard to the customers. Testing is done not as a customer but as someone totally unconnected with the transaction.
This Dilbert strip conveys the essence!
Allow me to share my experience on two different instances
Some time back, I logged into a travel portal (that has since gone out of business and was quite popular after its closure thanks to the legal hardships faced by its Founder) to check for some accommodation for my forthcoming visit. When I found a suitable place, I had a few queries on the facilities. When I clicked on the ‘Chat with us‘, pronto, a form appeared asking for my Name, Email id and mobile number. I wanted to yell “hey! I’ve logged in. You have all my details including my previous bookings. Why are you asking for the information when you already have it?” but it would have fallen on deaf ears. Hence I proceeded to fill up the details and got on to a chat.
If the chat application on the site doesn’t connect to the login details of the same site, then we have clearly lost the plot.
Another time, I was attempting to do a fund transfer using the mobile app of my bank and when I logged in, there was this screen “Please upgrade to the latest version”. There was neither an option to ‘Do it later’ nor a button ‘Ugrade Now’. And there was no explanation as to why I needed to upgrade the app. Just a command. And this Bank has won laurels and awards for the ease of doing business!!
The tragedy continued: When I managed to speak to an executive of the bank, all he said is that the upgrade wasn’t optional but mandatory, as if I couldn’t figure it out. And when I asked him why they couldn’t have made it easier by giving options, he countered “You could have visited the play store to update the app”.
So much so for customer-centricity!!
I have intentionally masked the names of these 2 service providers because they are not the exceptions but the norm. When we go on our digital journeys we would come across more of these broken links.
Unless organizations have real empathy for their customers, we will continue to have hyped-up apps and websites that cause more pain than comfort
Is your business in the same boat or are you different?