Customer experience is nowadays an important issue to attract and retain customers. Even before a customer is actually in the car. We talk about this with Katlijn Voordeckers, director and brand strategist of Remarkable (Branding & Communication Agency & Academy) and author of the book ‘TOPgeMERKt’.
What are your experiences with the taxi sector?
“When I once took a taxi in the morning, it was right on time. I had reserved the taxi earlier. In the lobby, the driver came to me. I really liked that. But in the evening things sometimes went wrong. I called the taxi company after the training. However, I couldn’t get through to anyone. That was not a pleasant experience.”
What does that say about the customer experience?
“Customer experience exists not just when you drive the customer around. It starts with the first contact when a customer calls or emails. The first experience must be good. When I take a taxi, I have to be able to count on being able to reach the central, that I will get someone on the line right away. And that the taxi will also be there. How can you give that customer – who wants to switch quickly – continuity in terms of accessibility and service, either online or live? The experience is important. If it is good, the customer will better see its added value and will also want to pay for it.”
And how do you deal with the customer during the journey? ?
“Try to be proactive. Embrace the customer and exude confidence. Give a welcoming feeling. When you get in, please inquire. Ask and create engagement. Ask if you can help the customer with anything? Get Approval: Is It Okay For Me To Do It? If you feel that a customer wants to be left alone, respect that. Some customers want to be able to work quietly. Other customers may want just a little more explanation. Last year we got into a taxi in Lisbon and then the taxi driver started giving a lot of tourist information that I didn’t need at the time. That can also have the opposite effect.”
If the experience is good, the customer sees the added value better and is also willing to pay for it
Do you look at the reviews?
“Yes, I like watching those. If you take an Uber, you can see the score for a driver. That does not happen in the classic taxi world. That might be interesting. It can be nice to create reassurance for the customer. Convenience, efficiency, comfort and control are important to a customer. If you can cover that well, you can take advantage of it. In addition, I also want to see the ride confirmed online. Not only the rather emotional, but also the functional customer experience must be in order.”
Taxi companies must therefore review their services from time to time?
“Yes, of course. A taxi must be there on time and must also drive. If you don’t meet those expectations, you lose a lot of customer satisfaction. Think about your “achievers.” The friendlier you help the customer, the better the experience. And then there are the ‘toppers’. Where can we go beyond the customer experience of the customer? With a proactive and involved attitude you can help the customer: Is it your first time in this city?, I can open the window if you want?, Would you like a bottle of water?”
This article previously appeared on sister magazine TaxiPro.be. Read here the full interview.
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