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7 Ways to Create a Great Customer Experience Strategy

Community banks that successfully implement a customer experience strategy achieve higher satisfaction rates, reduced customer churn, and increased revenues. As technology becomes more robust and customer-buying habits shift, community banks must constantly look for areas of innovation and ways to meet customer demands. Below are seven proven methods that work for community banks.

1.    Create a clear customer experience vision

Define a clear customer-focused vision and a set of statements that act as guiding principles. Your bank can use core community values and embed those values into your culture, including being humble and embracing change. Every member of your team should know these principles, and they should be embedded into all areas of training and development.

2.    Create personas of your customer segments

Identify who your customers are and understand customer needs. You might find that your community bank is acquiring new residents at a much lower cost than other demographics, or there’s been a sudden surge in small businesses in your community. Finding these segments could help you connect and empathize with the situations they face. Create personas to help your customer support team recognize who they are and understand them better.

3.    Empower your employees

Community banks and credit unions need to invest in technology that provides every employee access to accurate, up-to-date, and consistent information, immediate answers to their questions, and an easy way to search for information. Identify the training needs of each member of your customer support team, and track team development through coaching, eLearning, and group training.

4.    Stay consistent across all touchpoints

To stay competitive, community banks need to continue building out channel capabilities to provide 24/7 real-time access to banking across channels. It’s all about providing a more seamless experience to drive customer acquisition, and that can only be achieved by an appropriate commitment to setting channel priorities and investing in infrastructure.

5.    Capture customer feedback in real-time

Capture real-time feedback to ensure you are delivering a WOW customer experience. Use live chat tools to have real-time conversations and when done, send a follow-up email to every customer using post-interaction surveys and similar customer experience tools. It’s also important to tie customer feedback to a specific customer support agent, which shows every team member the difference they make to the business.

6.    Act upon regular employee feedback

Use tools that allow staff to share ideas to improve the customer experience and for managers to see how the team feels towards the business. Using project management software or social media tools, community banks can create a closed environment where customer service staff leave continuous feedback. Make sure the management reads and acts upon employee feedback.

7.    Test and then test again

No two community banks are the same. What works for one bank and one customer segment may not work for another. The only way to know what works in your bank or credit union is to test. Testing things such as frequency, messaging, the channel of communications, target markets for specific products and special offers are just some of the many areas possible for testing and honing.


With so much competition in the retail banking and credit union space, customers have choices. Customer experience is an area that needs constant nurturing and care. With a greater focus on customer experience strategy, community banks will realize a positive impact on customer loyalty, higher retention, and increased revenue growth.

Key Takeaways

  • Create a clear customer experience vision
  • Create personas of your customer segments
  • Empower your employees
  • Stay consistent across all touchpoints
  • Capture customer feedback in real-time
  • Act upon regular employee feedback
  • Test and then test again