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Customer Pain Points: What Are They, How to Identify & Their Solutions

Wouldn’t it be magical if there was a product to ease major customer pain points within minutes? 

Sadly, we don’t live in a perfect world. 

Modern customers want to engage with a business that listens to them and works hard to resolve their pain points. But only if it were that easy to know what your customers feel and think. 

It can be, though, with the right approach and tools.

After reading this blog, you’ll understand the types of customer pain points and explore actionable tips that will help you turn unhappy customers into loyal brand advocates.

What Are Customer Pain Points?

Customer pain points are the problems and issues prospects and customers face at various touch points through their customer journey while interacting with a brand.

These pain points play a crucial role for businesses in determining what they need to prioritize in their customer experience strategy and how they can offer an experience customers won’t forget.

Types of Customer Pain Points

If you want to identify customer journey pain points successfully, you should know what to look for. Customer pain points tend to fall into these four categories.

Process Pain Points

The issues arise during the interaction between the brand and the customers in the internal process. For example, connecting to the right department.

Financial Pain Points

These are the issues customers and prospects have with the prices of your products and services. If they perceive the cost to be too high, they will see the recurring purchase as a pain point. For example, subscriptions, membership fees, etc. 

Support Pain Points

Support pain points occur when customers aren’t getting quality support and assistance at critical stages of their journey.

For instance, customers may be facing issues such as excessive wait time or delayed response from support. Such pain points will tell you what you need to improve in the support service – a better ticketing system with more personnel.

Productivity Pain Points

Productivity pain points refer to the issues prospects and customers face due to a lack of productivity on the company’s end or things that make their experience unproductive. 

For example, you have missed deadlines, customers have to take redundant steps to perform an action, inconvenience while using the product, etc.

What Are the Ways to Identify Customer Pain Points?

Best practices or tips can’t come in handy if you don’t know what to resolve. So, here’s how you can identify your customers’ pain points and work towards offering a seamless customer experience.

1. Perform Qualitative User Research

Many of the customer pain points discussed above can be resolved using the right user research approach. The research entails exploring your customers’ overall experience throughout different touchpoints.

It’s a great way to zero in on customers’ obstacles and find product/feature opportunities.

You can ask prospects and customers about their experience while interacting with several aspects of your brand, such as the website, mobile app, customer service, social media profiles, etc. 

Why?

That’s how you’ll figure out where they got stuck and had a less-than-perfect experience with you. Once you know what to fix, you can ensure other customers don’t face the same issues.

User research includes:

  • Constantly updating buyer personas to create suitable customer journeys.
  • Keeping tabs on customer trends to offer features, products, and services that cater to their needs.
  • Tracking customer behavior to identify unsatisfactory interactions and improve them.

You can check out our detailed guide on user research and what goes into it to give an unparalleled customer experience.

CASE STUDY: KINGSPOINT

KingsPoint is an agency that helps its clients increase website conversions using bespoke techniques. The company analyzes clients’ unique problems using Qualaroo NudgesTM on their websites. 

The surveys collect valuable customer insights on different elements, such as products, the website, processes, etc., to find the causes behind low conversions and eradicate them.

Customers’ feedback helps KingsPoint improve the less-perfect areas of their clients’ websites and solve problems that could cost them approximately $60,000 a year.

2. Listen to Your Customers for Contextual Insights

User research can only take you so far in identifying and resolving customer pain points.

You need precise insights such as what ticks your customers off, at which touchpoint they face what problem, and more.

Micro Surveys are a great way to listen to the voice of your customers and collect contextual feedback. For example, customers come to the pricing page, stay a few seconds, and then poof! 

With open-ended exit-intent surveys, you can discover why they never converted into a customer, i.e., made the purchase.

Some of the open-ended questions you can use in your contextual surveys are: 

  • What stopped you from purchasing today?
  • What information is missing from this pricing page?
  • What can we do to improve our website?

Wondering why we didn’t mention using email surveys? Well, they are only useful for collecting general feedback and can’t help much with in-moment and contextual feedback that lets you pinpoint customer issues accurately.

CASE STUDY: TWILIO

Twilio helps businesses create messaging apps for videos, SMS, and voice messages. With various buyer personas, Twilio needed a tool to keep track of the customers’ unique needs and remove any obstacles in the smooth customer journey.

Qualaroo surveys came in handy, and Twilio gathered some rich insights that helped them perform A/B testing and tailor the product development strategy.

As Laura Schaffer, the Product Manager for Twilio’s Experimentation Platform, says: 

“In less than 5 minutes, teams can go from having almost entirely opinion-backed ideas to having ones that are data-backed by targeted customer feedback. This empowers teams to deliver products and experiences that are data-proven to best serve our customers.” 

3. Use Live Chat to Identify Customer Pain Points

Besides on-site surveys, you can leverage chatbots to know what kind of experience customers have throughout their journey and what hiccups they face. 

Tools like ProProfs Chat allow you to conduct surveys within the tool and ask open-ended questions to put your finger on customer issues. 

Keep in touch with your customer support team since they have much information about day-to-day customer interactions and the challenges they face.

Additionally, you can create journeys with your chatbot to identify customer issues and resolve them in real-time.


💁‍♀️Pro Tip:

It’s a great idea to set up a CRM like BIGContacts that can store feedback from surveys and allow you to leave comments on each customer contact. 

This way, you can close the feedback loop as all the teams and departments can access the history of each customer’s interaction with the company and what went wrong.


4. Talk to Your Sales Reps About Their Friction Points

Your sales reps are one of the customer-facing teams that directly interact with your customers on a daily basis. So, missing out on the feedback from them would be a huge mistake. 

However, not every feedback from your sales team would have underlying customer issues. For example, if your sales reps complain about the quality of leads they are assigned, it has nothing to do with issues customers may be facing. 

On the contrary, if they say that the conversion rate is low because customers want specific features within a specific price range, you need to rethink your monetary strategy and the features you are offering.

5. Learn From Your Competitors’ Mistakes

People say that you should learn from your mistakes. Well, why make mistakes at all when you can learn from others?

Keep an eye out for your competitors’ social media and leverage third-party review sites to see what customers say about them and explore their pain points. 

Performing competitive analysis can tell you a lot about your customers, their preferences, behavior, and of course, their pain points.

If your buyer personas are similar to your competitors, you can take preventive measures and ensure your customers don’t face the same problems.

6. Apply Social Listening

Social listening can be a part of your competitor analysis, but it goes beyond that. It includes observing your target audience online and offline to see what they think about your brand, your competitors, their changing needs, behaviors, etc.

Keeping track of all activities and trends related to your customers will give you a holistic view of where you stand and what you need to work on.

8 Customer Pain Points & Their Solutions

To offer a seamless customer experience, you need to know the customers’ struggles. So here are a few customer pain point examples and their solutions to get you started.

1. Customers Don’t Get Your Product/Service at Once

Businesses often get too focused on aesthetics or the ‘Hot’ features of their products/services that they forget to highlight the basics.

But what’s the big deal?

At the awareness stage, the leads don’t know your offerings well, and to get them interested, you need to have clear messaging. If prospects don’t understand why they need your product or service, they will never turn into customers.

Solution:

A/B testing your website is a great way to analyze how easy it is for prospects to understand your offerings and what’s missing on your product page. You can pair it up with contextual surveys to ask prospects if the features are clear.

CASE STUDY: HOOTSUITE

A social media platform, Hootsuite, allows its users to access multiple social media accounts from one place.

The platform saw a huge bounce rate on the website home page but had no clue what was causing it. 

Did they leave it at that?

No, they used customer feedback survey software to know what pain points customers faced that forced them to leave the website without achieving the goals. 

They found they had explained the complex features so well that they missed out on explaining the simple functionalities of the tool and what it does.

With the feedback, HootSuite was able to overhaul the homepage and make it more prospect-friendly.

2. Your Product/Service’s Benefits Aren’t Clear

Given that you aced your awareness stage, the leads will consider your product/service. At this stage, you need to convince them your offerings are the solution to their issues. Now, that’s the hardest part. 

Marketing doesn’t always work on the prospects; they need proof and examples of how they can use your product for their business.

Solution:

Explaining the use cases of your solution is a great way to help prospects see the value of your product/service, the benefits they will get, how they can utilize it, and what business pain points they can work out.

3. Poor Quality of Products & Services

If your prospects and even repeat customers don’t believe in the quality of the products, they wouldn’t think twice before opting out.

As Sam Walton, founder of Walmart, says –

“Quality is to give the customers what they want.”

Many businesses make the mistake of assuming they know what their customers want. Remember how Google Glass’ so-called cool quotient didn’t go well with the consumers? The company had basically not taken into consideration that the battery life, security features and even the pricing would matter that much.

Solution:

Continuously collect customer feedback and analyze the needs and expectations of your prospects so you can deliver exactly what they need.

Keep your ear open to bad word-of-mouth. After all, even unsatisfied customers can give you constructive criticism to help create and improve a product that customers want.

4. Unoptimized Checkout Process

If your checkout process is not converting, all your efforts up until this point have been a waste. It’s even more frustrating for your customers since they spent so much time choosing the products/features but only found disappointing experiences.

Things like a broken customer journey, process, load speed, and payment options are some examples that add to a bad checkout UX.

Solution:

  • Ensure you offer multiple payment getaways.
  • Ensure that your website doesn’t lag when customers are browsing, i.e., optimize your website.
  • Don’t focus too much on the three-click rule.
  • Keep the checkout simple and streamlined so customers can easily browse products and make purchases.

5. Slow First Response Time

Did you know that 12% of customers think “lack of speed” is one of the biggest  causes of customer frustration? Or that 90% consider an “immediate” response to be a necessity? 

No customer wants to wait for minutes on end to get a solution for the simplest issues. The more customers wait to get help, the more they feel the brand doesn’t value their time. It can become a deal-breaker for many prospects and customers.

Solution:

  • Use chatbots to reduce your First Response Time (FTR). You can design pathways with automated responses and branching logic to help customers with simple issues.
  • Introduce self-help options such as ProProfs Knowledge Base so customers can resolve their queries independently without waiting for customer support.
  • Leverage video chat and co-browsing techniques in your customers’ support to resolve technical customer issues with minimal friction.

6. Your Customer Experience Isn’t Omni-Channel-Friendly

Let’s say this off the bat, omnichannel customer experience (CX) matters. Your customers expect a seamless and consistent experience throughout their journey, including offline interactions.

Customers interact with a brand through communication channels such as social media, email, surveys, and a trip to your brick-and-mortar store. You must ensure that their challenges are handled seamlessly and in record time. 

For example, say your customers come to you with a problem on one of your social media channels. You need to create a ticket so your support team can reach and help them.

Solution:

  • Build a tech stack with tools that help create tickets from different channels for easier management and tracking.
  • Ensure that your teams know your mission and vision that’ll guide them into delivering a customer experience that resonates with your brand.

7. Lack of Adequate Knowledge & Experience

How will your employees offer optimum support if they don’t know enough about the product/service they are working for? 

Whether the lack of knowledge is related to product features/functionalities or something more complex like the crucial metrics, it can significantly affect your business and the ability to resolve customer pain points effectively. 

Solution:

  • Constantly track your customer satisfaction and performance metrics, so you know the weak areas of your business and how to improve them quickly.
  • As for the customer-facing teams, it’s best to conduct periodic training sessions to educate them on your product, business values, and offerings. Tools like ProProfs Training come in handy for this purpose.

8. Rude Behavior of Support Representatives

What’s worse for customers than a bad user experience brought on by issues? 

An unempathetic interaction with the support personnel. 

Your customers are already upset, and the last thing they need is another interaction to add to their bad experience.

When personnel often have to tackle one angry customer after another, offering a memorable experience seems easier said than done.

Solution:

  • For the sake of both customers and employees, it’s better to train your employees on emotion management and teach them to practice empathy phrases and words when tackling angry customers. The aim is to calm the customers, resolve their issues quickly and encourage them to stick with you.

5 Best Practices to Solve Customer Pain Points

Aside from the customer pains discussed above, you can practice a few best practices while resolving the clients’ pain points. Let’s check them out.

1. Prioritize Low-Effort Issues

Customer issues range from minute to very serious. Of course, you should eventually address all the pain points of your customers but doing it all at once isn’t an option. And sadly, customers aren’t going to wait for you to fix things.

So, what can you do?

The easiest and most sorted way to go about it is to prioritize resolving the low-effort issues. For example, suppose some of your customers are facing issues with product returns, and a few have complaints regarding unsatisfactory support service.

In this case, figuring out the exact error in the return process will take time and resources, but improving individual support service experience can be quickly done.

2. Analyze Feedback Data for Actionable Insights

Performing competitive analysis or market research will only take you so far if you don’t properly analyze the feedback and procure insights to remove the obstacles from your experience.

Some of the best ways to conduct customer feedback analysis are through AI-powered sentiment analysis, advanced reporting, and using a third-party tool like Google Analytics. 

Customer experience software like Qualaroo offers sentiment analysis feature where you can analyze the emotions in the written feedback and collect valuable qualitative insights.

3. Offer Solutions Through Case Studies & Testimonials

Another way to help your customers and ensure they don’t face issues regarding lack of knowledge about features and use cases of your product/service is by giving them correct information.

Case studies and customer testimonials are rich sources of information. For example, Qualaroo also has a dedicated section on case studies helping our customers explore how the product can help them.

As for the customer testimonials, besides direct face-to-face interviews and video testimonials, you can also collect them using surveys. You can collect in-context feedback, tag it, and use it as testimonials on your website.

4. Make Your Customers Feel Heard

One of the worst experiences for customers besides hitting roadblocks is waiting to be heard. We are not talking about the first-time response; but how quickly you resolve their issues and make them feel heard.

You must be thinking about how you can do that. Here are a few tips:

  • Offer tailored solutions
  • Empathize in a simple language

5. Don’t Forget to Follow Up

To offer an incredible customer experience, you’ll have to do more than remove the roadblocks. If you truly want to show customers that you care, a follow-up is needed.

Doing so will give you insights into the quality of your customer-facing teams and close the feedback loop.

Ask These Questions to Resolve Customer Pain Points

All there’s left for you to know now is how to discover these pain points. So, here’s how you can ask your customers about the issues they face using surveys:

  • What is the biggest challenge(s) you face?
  • What are your overall priorities?
  • Can you please describe your customer journey?
  • What do you think isn’t working in the current solution to your problem?
  • What’s the most time-consuming task you would like to streamline?
  • What are the things preventing you from achieving your goals?
  • What do you think will help you optimize our product/service?
  • What are your expectations while reaching out to us for help?
  • What methods are the best form of communication for you?

Find, Remove, and Improve: Three Steps to Offer Pain-Free CX

By now, you have a good idea about the customer pain points in their journey and how you can identify the roadblocks and remove them.

Simply asking your customers directly and analyzing their behavior online goes a long way. For example, if you track customer behavior on your website using heatmaps, you can identify where customers get stuck.

To uncover why customers take certain actions or get stuck somewhere, you should also ask the right questions to get accurate and reliable feedback. 

For this, you can leverage an online feedback survey tool offering survey templates to get you started quickly with the right questions.

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