In a world that is becoming ever more digital, customer demand for easily accessible information with simple, smooth and quick customer journeys is becoming the norm, further accelerated by the pandemic.
Better customer experience
Over the years, we have met this demand by becoming a digital company, providing customer portals, electronic signature capability for our credit agreements and communicating wherever possible through digital channels.
Email has become an optimal channel for customers to receive updates to their credit agreement with us, as quickly as possible. Where customers email addresses have been provided, we’ve been able to improve the customer experience by giving customers the ability to view correspondence immediately and on any device wherever they are; enhance the look and feel of our documentation and provide quick link access to our customer self-service portals.
The importance of email in supporting digital customer journeys can be seen in the response rate to the number of customers who sign their credit agreements online. In a review of our customers, the rate of digital signatures goes up from c.27% to c.82% when customer have provided an email address at the beginning of their journey. The uptake in customers using the digital journey option demonstrates that when customers are provided an online option most will use it compared to post. This behaviour is becoming increasingly standard as consumers become increasingly comfortable with secure digital journeys that allows items to be actioned easily and quickly.
In addition to keeping pace with customer expectations, providing customer emails at the beginning of the journey helps to reduce the volume of customer queries to partners and to us, as messages are delivered to the customer immediately. Supporting digital journeys with online communications also improve customer retention. Those who have a positive real-time customer journeys are more likely to renew with their existing provider.
Like many organisations, we recognise the importance of a strong Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) agenda, and our drive to email capture directly supports our goals to improve our long-term environmental impact by reducing the amount of paper used and waste produced.
Previously when a customer did not sign online we issued a paper credit agreement to them. A review of our signing statistics showed that once a customer received a paper agreement, they then went online to sign, making the paper credit agreement redundant.
We, therefore, removed the paper credit agreement for online customers in favour of a further email follow-up, and this has seen us reduce our paper consumption by almost 1m page each year without impacting our sign rate.
This is why we want to work with you to increase our customer email capture at point of submission and asking that you share email addresses for existing business, so that we can continue to drive these three benefits.