If you have ever checked into a high-end hotel, you’ll have noticed that the customer experience is what really sets them apart from your run-of-the-mill hotel. Next time, pay close attention to all aspects of your check-in experience, from the second you drive up to the moment you leave.

From the minute you pull up in your car you have people attending to your every need: bags, valet, friendly banter, you name it. The check-in process immediately provides a fast lane for VIPs versus first-time patrons, but either way, you are treated with white gloves from the moment you arrive. Throughout the entirety of your stay, attendants are there to assist you around the clock. Need a late night snack? Call. Need a reservation to a fancy restaurant? Talk to the concierge. If hotels set the bar for customer experience how does your brand stack up and how does it translate to the digital experience?

Here’s a quick audit list for your face to face experience:

  1. What is your parking situation? Do you have a wine club/members area?
  2. What sort of signs do you have on the walk from the parking lot?
  3. Do people know where to go, and what to do when they arrive at your winery?
  4. Do you have a members only area at your tasting bar? Should you?
  5. How do you greet customers, what questions do you ask?
  6. What does your cellar door offer that separates you from your neighbours?

One of the key elements of this audit list is identifying returning customers/wine club members. By providing a different/augmented experience to these customers, you are seeding the benefits of becoming a wine club member to those that don’t know about or haven’t joined your club yet. Being able to introduce the idea of your wine club without having anyone sell it is incredibly powerful. If you can fine tune your customer experience to have your visitors ask you about your wine club you are going to have a far easier time selling to them.
These are not questions that you should be asking at the point of sale, they need to be communicated earlier in the sales process.

Now let’s do the same for your digital experience:

  1. How do I get to your website? Search, social media, email? How do people find your brand online?
  2. How hard is it to find basic information (location, hours of operations, phone number)?
  3. When I open a bottle of your wine at home can I find information easily and quickly to help me with food pairings or drinking windows? Think about wines that you no longer sell but that your best customers may have put away to age.
  4. How complicated is it for your customers to update their information such as credit cards, or addresses with you? If you are getting a lot of people calling you to do this, that’s a key indicator that you might be able to fine tune things.
  5. What are the top hit pages on your website, what are people doing on your website and are they finding the answers they need?
  6. Can I talk to you online (via chat) and how are you managing that experience? What happens after-hours?

Take a close look at both of the experiences you offer and see how they match up and how they criss-cross between one another. Where do your customers start and where do they end? If you are trying to grow cellar door visitation, make sure to measure and keep track of your progress. The analog world (face to face) is far more laborious to track, however, if you do, you’ll be able to keep track of your performance immediately.

The digital experience is far easier to manage and track. Make sure to check your Google Analytics to see where your customers are coming from, where they engage, how long they stay and exactly what they do. And if you want to get really nerdy, try installing FullStory, where you can record and reproduce real user experiences on your website which can help you support customers, boost conversions and debug faster. We’d also suggest using a customer support tool such as Intercom or Zendesk. Ultimately there is no shortage of tools in the digital space but that only matters if you use them, measure results and continue to make incremental changes to improve month after month.

Customer experience is at the forefront of the current generation, where first class service is the new norm. In essence, this is the latest in holistic attribution, where the online experience matches the physical, ensuring that your client touch points exude your brand and are what makes you unique.