There's a motto that business owners like to go by: "The customer is always right." While there are exceptions to this rule, the theme serves as a code of conduct meant to convey to workers that a financial plan centered on the customer and their happiness is ultimately the key to success. After all, according to a recent survey, more than 8 in 10 buyers pay more when they have a good customer experience, Forbes reported.
Because customers' are so highly valued, business owners may be wondering if the time has come to establish a job title whose responsibility is that of optimizing customers' experience.
More formally known as the chief customer officer, it's defined as "an executive that provides the comprehensive and authoritative view of the customer and creates corporate and customer strategy at the highest levels of the company to maximize customer acquisition, retention, and profitability," according to the Chief Customer Officer Council. In a 2014 CCO Council study, nearly 1 in 4 Fortune 100 companies had a CCO and 10 percent of Fortune 500 businesses.
A chief customer officer position may seem like something that only major conglomerates have established. But there's reason to believe that small business owners may want to form something similar, especially for those companies whose success is entirely dependent on the customer.
Customers have more choices than ever before
A recent survey from management consultancy firm Accenture found that today's consumer marketplace is perhaps best described as the "nonstop customer," citing how a majority of Americans regularly use and interact with a higher number of brands today than they did a decade ago.
Perhaps because of this, few consumers confine themselves to one brand. The survey revealed that just 28 percent of consumers felt "very loyal" to a specific brand or provider, a rate that's remained the same for the past several years.
Loyalty is especially important for businesses in the retail and foodservice industry. However, in a recent poll done by customer retention firm Thanx, 7 in 10 retail and restaurant customers who patronize a company for their first time never make a return visit thereafter.
Appointing a CCO may be what businesses need to improve retention and earnings. The CCOC has more information on what the position entails.