Join me on an imaginative journey. You’re in the middle of New York City and you’re hungry. Just so you can enjoy the moment, let’s pretend we’re not still in the middle of a global pandemic. Go ahead, soak it in.
You walk down a side street and notice a small deli with a long line out the front. You join the line. You can see the sandwiches being made and your mouth starts watering. You place your order and pull out your card to pay. That’s when the cashier points to a handwritten sign:
Mortified, you fumble with your wallet and then admit you don’t have any cash. The cashier rolls his eyes, “there’s an ATM down the street. Next!” You head to the ATM, thinking who only accepts cash???, and then trot back to the restaurant to pay and enjoy your meal. For some reason it doesn’t taste quite as good as you thought it would.
If we apply what we talked about last week in walking back the customer journey
, we might point out that there’s a problem at the purchase
stage of the customer journey, namely, that you the customer didn’t know you had to have cash when it was time to pay. Perhaps the deli could have moved that information earlier in the journey, maybe by putting a sign out front or putting this information on their website. The question is, would you still have chosen to eat at this restaurant if you had received the information earlier? The company would be doing a better job setting
expectations—"we only accept cash"—but they might be failing to meet
your expectations, “I can only pay with card.”
Many CX problems have their root in a failure to appropriately set customer expectations, but sometimes it’s not enough to set expectations. Sometimes you have to consider whether you need to make a change to better meet expectations. Let’s dig in.