8 Essential Customer Engagement Software Features

Customer engagement software must-have features include automation, customer segmentation, loyalty program, and communication options.

Out of sight, out of mind. In today’s competitive landscapes, it’s never been truer. Your clients in a variety of verticals are looking for ways to keep their customers engaged and their brands top of mind. Customer engagement software can provide merchants with tools that keep them in communication with their customers, target customers with relevant offers, and build traffic with rewards and promotions.

Customer engagement software with these features can help your clients make progress toward the goals they’ve set for customer retention and business growth:

Customer Segments

There’s a lot of noise in consumer’s inboxes, on their smartphones, and in their list of text messages. Personalized, relevant offers, however, can get attention. The most valuable customer engagement software solutions will give your clients the ability to segment their lists. Segmentation allows a merchant to target marketing messages and promotions to customers most likely to respond to them. It increases customer satisfaction with a brand — and helps the merchant get the best marketing ROI.

Multiple Communication Options

Customer engagement software should give the merchant the ability to communicate with customers in the manner they prefer, including email, text, in-app, or via social media. 

Automation

Managing a customer engagement strategy without automation would be very time-consuming — if not impossible. Customer engagement applications enable merchants to set up rules so when certain criteria are met, an offer or message automatically dispatches. For example, customers who haven’t made purchases in six months could receive a percent-off coupon if they purchase within the next week. Or, customers who have purchased a certain line of sports equipment could receive an invitation to take advantage of a pre-season promotion. The merchant established the rules — the software does the rest.

Loyalty

No two merchants’ businesses or customer bases are the same — so no two loyalty rewards programs should be either. Customer engagement software should give merchants the ability to tailor their loyalty programs so they’ll resonate with their customers. Look for loyalty program features that give your clients options such as rewards points or cashback, rewards based on tiers, gamification, cross-promotion and integration with social media.

Mobile app

Some customer engagement software suites give the merchant the ability to create a mobile app. Others may have third-party app integrations. Make sure the solution you choose meets your clients’ business objectives, and, if the merchant chooses, enables customers to make secure payments through the app.

Reporting

Evaluate any customer engagement software solution you’re considering for the quality of reporting and insights it provides. Make sure your clients can segment or filter clients based on specific detail and monitor marketing effectiveness to each segment. Also, make sure your clients will have the ability to identify trends that could inspire new marketing or customer engagement initiatives.

Centralized management

Also, evaluate the software’s dashboard when you demo the solution. Make sure your clients will be able to easily manage their marketing messaging, customer segments, loyalty program and other elements of their customer engagement strategy from one screen. Additionally, data insights should also be easy to access and for all stakeholders to understand.

Integrations

Customer engagement software shouldn’t be a standalone solution. Make sure it can integrate with the merchant’s point of sale (POS) system and e-commerce system as well as other technologies such as locationing solutions using beacons.

A High-Value Solution

Since the rise of e-commerce, stores expanding into non-traditional product lines, and opportunities to shop on social media, at pop-up shops, and with a single touch on a smartphone, consumers have more options than ever before. An effective customer engagement solution can provide ROI that your clients can measure in higher rates of traffic and sales, customer retention, share of wallet, and app or website use. Customer engagement also helps build a firm foundation for a business. Loyal customers convert more often, spend more, and act as brand ambassadors, recommending merchants to their family and friends.

Trusted business advisors will help their clients implement customer engagement software with the right features to have these advantages.