Why Managing Customer Pain Points is Essential for Driving Sales

8 min read

To drive sales, you need to make sure that the product or service you’re offering was not made for the sake of it: it addresses a real need. It solves a problem.

How do you do this? By getting to know your potential customers and learning about their problems. Or, to put it another way, you need to manage customer pain points to drive sales. 

This article explores what customer pain points are, and how you can learn about them and use them to your company’s advantage.

What is a customer pain point?

A pain point is a persistent or recurring problem which customers face in their daily lives, especially when interacting with a business, product, or service. They are essentially frustrating hurdles, creating gaps between where the customer is and where they want to be. 

Businesses need to be aware of customer pain points. Firstly, understanding existing pain points allows you to tailor your company’s solutions to the customers’ needs. If your product or service solves a real problem which has been inconveniencing a client for some time, then you’re providing real value to your customers – thus boosting satisfaction and driving sales. 

Secondly, it is important to be aware of the pain points customers experience when interacting with your business. What obstacles are in the way of them purchasing or being fully satisfied with your services? These are the areas you need to be looking at. 

Recognizing and readdressing pain points will set you apart from competitors by demonstrating your dedication to meeting customers’ needs. 

Pain points can stem from a variety of sources – maybe a specific product is needed to do a task more efficiently, or stress around a particular unresolved issue is causing emotional problems in the team. In general, pain points can be grouped into four main categories: financial, process, support, and productivity pain points.

Types of customer pain points

types of customer pain points

Financial pain points

Financial pain points – pain points concerning money – occur when clients feel that they’re paying too much and not receiving enough in return. These are perhaps the most critical types of pain points. 

Customers will always be on the lookout for the most cost-effective solutions. That’s why it’s important for businesses to meet customer expectations, strategizing for budget-friendly options and customer-friendly subscription plans. 

When you understand customers’ financial pain points, you can work to offer an optimally priced solution which caters to customers’ needs.

Process pain points

Process pain points often result from overly complex and disorganized internal processes. They come down to operational inefficiencies like time-consuming tasks, complicated methodologies, and unclear sales lead processes. 

It’s good to have a thorough understanding of your clients’ workflows if they are looking to simplify processes. You may be able to suggest features of your product which would help you do certain tasks more efficiently. 

For example, if your company specializes in contact center solutions, you might recommend Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) to a client complaining about difficulty with manual call routing. 

Operational inefficiencies don’t only affect employees, they also worsen the customer experience. It’s crucial to be aware of process pain points when customers interact with your business. 

Ideally, interacting with your business across channels should be a seamless experience, solving process pain points for the customer rather than adding to them.

Support pain points

Support pain points arise from customer interactions with your sales and support teams. These could be shortcomings in the team’s performance, such as a lack of customer service skills, rudeness, insufficient product knowledge, or poor success rate when it comes to resolving issues. 

Equally, support pain points could be the result of larger failings. Customers may be frustrated by unclear manuals, undertrained help agents, or limited channels for support. 

There are plenty of reasons why a customer may feel that they did not receive the attention and support they needed. Your job is to understand these pain points and adjust your customer service approach to better meet the needs of your clients.

Productivity pain points

Productivity pain points often stem from inefficient workflows or out-of-date tools which slow down or disrupt daily activities and workflows. Businesses need the right balance of automation and easily integrated tools to operate at maximum productivity. Your business could offer solutions which solve productivity pain points and allow clients to work at their full potential. 

However, your company may also experience productivity pain points, or even pass them on to customers. Do your support agents struggle with rerouting queries to the right team? Do they have trouble understanding and solving customers’ issues with the product?

Customers expect an experience as seamless as the product they’re paying for. Once they raise a query it should be dealt with swiftly. But internal efficiencies affecting the productivity of your own staff may hinder the customer experience here. 

What is the difference between process and productivity pain points? Although they seem similar, there is a key difference. Productivity pain points affect employees’ performance because there is too much on their plate – and they could be assisted by AI or self-service options. 

Process pain points, on the other hand, affect agent performance due to inefficiencies in collaboration and communication. Addressing these requires strategic and systematic change.

How to identify customer pain points

1. Use customer feedback

It’s worth asking customers directly about their pain points. You can do this via surveys – there are a range of customer satisfaction survey tools at your disposal – focus groups, customer emails, or social media channels. Hearing directly from your customers is the best way to get to the root of the issue and find out what pain points are causing friction.

2. Ask the right questions

If you’re already sending out surveys but not receiving the answers or the insights you’re seeking, it might have to do with how you structure your questions. 

In general, you should go for open-ended questions and allow customers space to elaborate. With closed or multiple-choice questions, keep it simple by asking one question at a time.
Double-barreled questions like “What problem were you trying to solve when you originally came across our product, and what are the top three benefits you received” are overwhelming, and customers may only answer half of the question.

3. Consult your employees

Customers aren’t the only ones with insights to share – your team probably has lots to say about pain points, too!

Ask your employees, especially those who regularly interact with customers, for feedback on any observations and insights into customer pain points. Don’t just ask for success stories either, missed opportunities are equally useful learning opportunities (if not more useful). 

Ask sales reps to write down observations following every sales pitch which didn’t lead to a deal. You want to know why the prospect turned down the product, what they disliked about it, and what might have led to a different outcome. 
You might also use call center call monitoring to track the success of your sales team and identify common pain points which prevent prospective customers from closing the deal.

4. Monitor online reviews

Customers will not only share their thoughts with you directly; they’re also likely to compare opinions among themselves, such as on peer-to-peer review sites or community forums. Browsing customer reviews is a great way to find out what your customers are saying, and what common grievances are being raised about your products or services.

It’s best to gather reviews from a variety of sources – keeping in mind that non-verified reviews are a growing issue – and see what the common themes are. You may find multiple people bonding over a shared pain point, or even suggesting fixes or features that they wish were available.

5. Research competitors

Investigate what your competitors are offering and which pain points they are claiming to address. You want to set yourself up with a good understanding of current industry trends, what is available, and which areas are not being adequately addressed. 

You may be able to alter your messaging to explain how your solution also addresses the competitor’s pain point. By looking at their website, you can also identify differences in price and performance. Perhaps they enable more integrations for a more seamless customer experience, and making your own product more compatible would eliminate pain points.
This will also help you identify areas where your business can stand out. For example, you may find in your market research that overseas customers do not feel seen by companies currently on the market offering specific solutions. With a domain name from OnlyDomains, you can fill this gap in the market and appeal directly to these customers.

6. Analyze customer data

Delve deep into customer data. The better you know your customers, the better. 

Tools like 360 customer view make this easier by providing a comprehensive and accessible view of every available data point for each individual customer, equipping businesses with a holistic understanding of customer behaviors, preferences, and needs. 

You need to go beyond surface-level interactions and dig deep into analytics and data patterns to best manage customer pain points. 

Insights gained from analyzing customer data can inform your strategy for addressing pain points. For example, you may decide to redesign a problematic feature or simplify a difficult process which is causing too many customers to drop off.

How managing customer pain points drives sales

Staying on top of customer pain points has many advantages – for your business, your employees, and for your clients – and these benefits have the knock-on effect of increasing sales. 

Here are 5 benefits of managing customer pain points:

1. You differentiate your business from competitors

When you understand customers’ pain points, you can identify areas where their needs are not being fully met by competitors in the industry. This is an opportunity to take initiative, addressing these unmet needs with unique products and solutions to fill the gaps in the market. 

By catering to previously overlooked pain points, you provide your customers with real value. This is a sure way to set your business apart from the competition. Additionally, a reputation for developing uniquely tailored solutions will help to build a loyal customer base which is more likely to make repeat purchases.

2. You can tailor your messaging

Using your understanding of customers’ needs, behaviors, and pain points, you can change up your messaging to make sure it resonates with its audience. There’s no point in developing and fine-tuning a product which addresses a pain point if you don’t also communicate this clearly to potential customers. 

The copy on your websites and marketing efforts should explicitly mention pain points which customers might be experiencing, the products or features you’re offering as a solution, and exactly how they will solve the problem.

3. You increase customer loyalty

Paying attention to customer pain points boosts brand loyalty in multiple ways. 

Addressing customer pain points naturally leads to a better customer experience and higher customer satisfaction, since customers feel that they are heard and their needs are being met. More satisfied customers mean more people who will choose your company again and again, even perhaps spreading the good word to their friends and business connections. 

Then, there’s the emotional connection built. When customers can feel that you genuinely understand their specific pain points and want to help make their lives easier, they are likely to feel a stronger personal connection with your business.

4. You improve operational efficiency

Addressing customer pain points is not only good for your customers, it may also benefit your business and employees by improving business operations. For example, if you find that customers are frustrated by long wait times when interacting with your brand, you may find ways to streamline internal processes. 

While the goal is to delight your customers with shorter wait times, to achieve this, you will have to focus on making your employees’ workflows more streamlined – thereby improving their job satisfaction at the same time.

5. You stay on top of the changing market

By regularly revisiting and analyzing customer pain points, you can constantly identify new opportunities for growth and innovation. This is important since industries are always changing and evolving, meaning customers’ needs will shift, and the solutions offered by competitors may look different.
For example, as the demand for efficient and personalized customer support continues to rise, you may notice more and more companies turning to AI-powered outbound call center solutions which change the way customers interact with the brand. You want to stay on top of trends and changes in your industry, addressing customer pain points and offering support via whichever channel they prefer.

Final thoughts

You can discover customer pain points by keeping a close eye on customer feedback, be it through surveys, online reviews, or asking employees – as well as observing your competition and collecting customer data. Then, you’re in a great position to adapt to customers’ needs, creating solutions which address unresolved pain points. 

By developing tailor-made products to address real problems, you drive innovation while ensuring customer satisfaction – resulting in customer loyalty, and an increase in sales from customers new and old.

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