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How to Create Customer-Centric Products: Best Practices and Strategies


8 min read

We’ve already talked about customer-centric approach and how you can leverage it to gain a sharper competitive edge and attract loyal customers. So, now in this article I will be shedding some light on how to ensure customer-centricity in software products.

First, we’ll speak of customer centricity practices and how to ensure accessibility and inclusivity of your software for all customers. Then, through the tips and tricks we will get to the real practical examples of customer centricity.

Best practices for customer centricity

In today’s fintech landscape, companies are recognizing the importance of customer centricity. As we’ve discovered in the previous article of this series, firms can improve user satisfaction, loyalty, and profitability.

To achieve customer centricity, firms need to adopt certain practices that help them understand their customers, provide personalized experiences, listen to feedback, and continuously improve their processes.

Customer segmentation

Customer segmentation is dividing a customer base into smaller groups, based on similar characteristics, needs, or behaviors. This allows companies to tailor their marketing efforts to each specific segment, rather than using a one-size-fits-all approach.

Customer segmentation can be done using a variety of criteria such as:

  1. Demographic data (age, gender, income, education),
  2. Psychographic data (lifestyle, values, personality),
  3. Geographic data (location, climate),
  4. Behavioral data (purchase history, brand loyalty, engagement).

Once the segments are identified, firms can develop targeted marketing campaigns aimed at the unique needs and preferences of each segment. This leads to increased customer satisfaction, loyalty, and sales.

Customer segmentation is also important to identify which segments are most profitable and where you as a business owner should focus your resources. It recognizes gaps in the product or service offerings, and makes improvements to better meet the needs of specific segments.

Feedback collection

Feedback collection is the process of gathering information from customers about their experiences with a product or service. It can be collected through a variety of channels, including surveys, customer reviews, social media, and customer support interactions.

The purpose of feedback collection is to gain insights into how customers feel about a product or service, what they like or dislike, and where improvements can be made. This information can be used to make data-driven decisions, improve customer satisfaction, and drive business growth.

To collect feedback effectively, you should consider the following best practices:

  1. Define clear objectives: Define the purpose of the feedback collection and what you hope to achieve from it. This will help guide the process and ensure that the feedback collected is actionable.
  2. Choose the right channels: Choose channels that are convenient and accessible for customers, such as email, online surveys, or social media. Make it easy for customers to provide feedback by providing clear instructions and minimizing the number of steps required.
  3. Use structured questions: Use structured questions in surveys or feedback forms to ensure consistency and make it easier to analyze the data. Avoid leading questions or biases that may influence the responses.
  4. Act on feedback: Feedback must be used to make improvements to products or services. Communicate with customers about how their reviews are being used to show that their opinions are valued.
  5. Follow up with customers: Follow up with customers who provide feedback to show that their opinions are important and to ensure that any issues have been resolved.

You should also know that there are three main ways to collect feedback; direct, indirect and inferred. In the illustration below you can see the examples of each.

types of feedback collection

Tips for customer centric software development and design

Developing software that truly resonates with customers can be a challenging task. In today’s highly competitive marketplace, it’s easy to get lost in multiple innovations and create cumbersome solutions. However, most experts conclude that minimalism is the one solution for customer centricity. Around 90% of customers complain about incorrect display or difficulties in software navigation.

So, you should start developing software that is tailored to the unique needs and requirements of customers. Here are some tips for customer-centric software development and design:

  1. Adjust development to resolve customers’ needs and pains: To develop software that is truly customer-centric, it is important to focus on customer needs and pains. This requires a deep understanding of your target customers, their pain points, and their needs. Conduct user research, analyze customer feedback, and identify areas where your software can address customer pain points.
  2. Avoid the parity trap: The parity trap refers to the tendency of software developers to copy the features of their competitors. This is a mistake as it can lead to a product that lacks differentiation and does not meet the unique needs of customers. Instead of copying features, focus on developing features that meet the specific needs of your customers.
  3. Setup easy feedback gathering system: To develop software that meets the needs of your customers, you need to gather feedback from them regularly. This feedback can help you understand the areas where your software needs improvement. Set up an easy feedback gathering system that makes it easy for customers to share their thoughts and ideas. This can be done through in-app surveys, feedback forms, or social media.
  4. Make sure the design is user-friendly and not overwhelming: UX is a critical aspect of customer-centric software development. Your software needs to be designed in a way that is intuitive and easy to use. This means avoiding complex user interfaces, limiting the number of options presented to users, and providing clear and concise instructions. As I’ve indicated in the beginning of this paragraph, minimalism is the key.

How to measure the impact and effectiveness of your customer-centric product development efforts

It is essential to measure the impact and effectiveness of customer centricity practices to ensure that they are making a positive impact on the bottom line. Let’s explore four of the most effectual metrics that can help you measure the impact of your customer-centric product development efforts.

Customer Satisfaction Surveys

Customer satisfaction surveys are a great way to measure how happy your customers are with your products or services. These surveys typically concern the users’ overall satisfaction with your company, the quality of your products or services, and customer experience with your customer service team.

You can also ask customers to provide feedback on specific aspects of your products or services, such as ease of use, reliability, or pricing.

To make the most of customer satisfaction surveys, it is essential to use a standardized approach to collecting and analyzing data. Use the same questions and survey format consistently to ensure that you can compare results over time. You can also use data visualization tools to help you identify trends and patterns in your data.

Net Promoter Score (NPS)

Net Promoter Score is a widely used metric that measures customer loyalty and satisfaction. It asks customers to rate, on a scale of 0-10, how likely they are to recommend your product or service to others. Customers who give a score of 9 or 10 are considered promoters, while those who give a score of 6 or below are considered detractors. The NPS is calculated by subtracting the percentage of detractors from the percentage of promoters.

Customer Effort Score (CES)

Customer Effort Score measures the ease with which customers can complete specific tasks related to your product or service. It asks customers to rate, on a scale of 1-5, how easy or difficult it was to complete a task, such as placing an order or resolving a problem with customer service.

A high CES indicates that your customers find it easy to complete tasks related to your product or service, which can improve customer satisfaction and loyalty. On the other hand, a low CES indicates possible frustration and dissatisfaction.

Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)

Customer Lifetime Value is a metric that measures the total value a customer brings to your company over their lifetime as a customer. It takes into account factors such as the customer’s purchase history, the frequency of purchases, and the customer’s likelihood to refer others to your product or service.

A high CLV indicates that your customers are highly loyal and valuable to your firm. It can also help you identify areas where you can improve customer retention and loyalty.

In conclusion, by using metrics such as customer satisfaction surveys, NPS, CES, and CLV, you can gain valuable insights into your customers’ experiences and identify areas for improvement. Now, let’s get to the more practical part of this article.

Examples of successful customer-centric fintech products

Famous customer-centric brands

  1. IKEA. The in-store experience for IKEA shoppers is as customer centric as it can be, as many say. However, the immersive experience doesn’t end there as companies use reality augmentation technology in order to help their customers to imagine how a piece of furniture would look in their homes. The 3D models are true-to-scale and anyone with a smartphone can try it.
  2. Wayfair. With a high variety of products Wayfair offers, it’d be hard for customers to make a choice without hyper-personalization options. So, the businesses adopted predictive analytics and AI algorithms to show the most relevant products for customers based on their buyer personas. This helps users get through incessant and irritating product lists.
  3. Hilton. The Hilton Honors mobile app is an enticing experience for their guests as it is basically all-in-one. It allows users to book the room and select the one they seem fitting, order meals, check-in and out, unlock the door, and do all this from their smartphone. This allows their front-desk to focus on face-to-face interactions and regulars to feel special and appreciated.

Customer-centric fintechs

Now, to the customer-centric fintechs as you’re probably wondering how it works in the industry. Well, your questions are being answered so read on!

  1. Acorns. This company pioneered the simple and now common round-ups tool that encourages micro-investing by automatically interesting users’ spare change. The Acorns service has accessible prices, which makes it more interesting to the customers. And, the service also works well with its target audience as it makes investing simple, cheap, and created for Millennials, who are the main customers segment of Acorns.
  2. Credit Karma. This firm allows users to access their credit reports free of charge, helps them unwrap their loans and credit card interest rates payments. This, and the main goal of the app to pursue the frictional experience. Their generosity in customer-centric methods doesn’t deprive Credit Karma of profits, however.

Final Thoughts

If you were wondering about the customer-centricity practices, strategies, tips and tricks, you’ve got this article to help you figure it out. For more information on customer centricity, read my previous one.

And, if any more questions arise, feel free to contact me or other DashDevs experts. We’ll be happy to consult you about customer centricity and how your business can achieve it. Our team follows customer centricity principles, so we’ve got a lot we can share.

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