Nine ways customer experience impacts consumer behaviour

9-ways-awa-heroThe workplace may be different from a consumer environment such as a shopping centre, but there are obvious links between the two when it comes to how people experience the environments around them.

Our research has identified nine ways customer experience impacts consumer behaviour. From these workplace professionals can learn a number of key lessons when designing their own environments.

The science of the customer experience – nine ways it impacts consumer behaviour

1. Emotions – Products and services that have been successful in the consumer world are those that bring to mind strong emotional responses from customers. Workplace professionals should always consider the emotions and feelings that a space will bring out.

2. Love – Customers who feel that a brand understands, cares for and even loves them have time and again demonstrated loyalty to that brand. The workplace is a reflection of a brand and the experience of it must show that the company cares for their teams.

3. Sensory inputs – There is a connection between sensory stimuli and customer behaviour – customers are believed to react better to certain colours, like blue, while certain smells, such as freshly baked bread, can increase sales by as much as 300 per cent. In a workplace all senses should be considered.

4. Retention – Studies have shown direct links between customer’s experience and their future purchasing aims. In the workplace this might be engagement and higher levels of employee retention. A positive emotional experience that creates loyalty is a key consideration when designing environments.

5. Expectation – The quality of a customer’s experience will be influenced by their set expectations. In a workplace organisations need to be aware of what their team’s expectations of their workplace will be as this will affect their experience.

6. Evolution – Customer expectations change depending on the industry sector, location, product and service, and they also change over time. The workplace experience, like the customer experience, must constantly develop if it is to continue to meet changing expectations.

7. Memory – Memories of an experience fade quickly and unevenly. In the consumer world advertising is used to reinforce aspects of an experience to influence customers’ future responses. The same approach needs to be adopted in the workplace; communicating messages to users about key positive aspects of the workplace experience and evolving them over time.

8. Consistency – Both positive and negative experiences affect how we frame current experiences but negative experiences have the biggest impact on customer satisfaction. Workplaces and workplace services need to not only meet the needs and expectations of their users, but to do so consistently and reliably.

9. Economy – Customer experience has a bigger influence on purchasing behaviours during times of economic growth than in lean years. Workplace professionals should try to maintain a high-quality workplace experience at all times but they should be aware that user expectations will be higher during periods of economic prosperity.

Find out more…

You can read more on this in a full version of the AWA report here.
The research has been carried out on behalf of Interserve by leading workplace change experts Advanced Workplace Associates (AWA) and the Centre for Evidenced-Based Management (CEBMa). It analyses over 100 reports and studies, drawing out key insights that relate to commercial environments and how these environments influence those using them.

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Jeff Flanagan

Jeff Flanagan is a managing director - commercial, at Interserve.