Quality of Experience or QoE is a subjective measurement of how much customers value their experience in working with a particular company. The term in shorthand, means customer satisfaction. Through various means, people selling something, who wish to maintain healthy businesses, all try to define exactly what the customer wants, what they need to have in order to be satisfied, and what they feel is missing from their experience.
The process of measuring quality of experience is called subjective because each customer is different. Mrs. Smith may go to the store and rate her quality of experience lower because the store has run out of her favorite type of bread. Mrs. Jones could go to the same store on the other hand, and be immensely satisfied because the customer service was really helpful, and an employee helped her to her car and loaded up her shopping bags for her. Each person has unique needs that may affect how much they like something, and even mood on any given day can affect how much you’re likely to be pleased with customer/vendor transactions.
Through things like surveys, though, vendors and service providers can start to get a sense of predominant needs of a large percentage of customers. If the aforementioned grocery store always runs out of Mrs. Smith’s favorite bread, and it’s a popular brand, then more people might note this on a survey. Other ways of measuring quality of experience come when vendors and service providers get complaints. If a large number of complaints are similar, then quality of experience could be improved by addressing them.
Though subjective, providing excellent or good quality of experience isn’t always a guessing game. When new businesses begin, they often have to ask how they are going to address this issue. By having a good general knowledge of what most customers will want, and paying attention as your business gets off the ground to what you seem to be lacking, you can adjust and improve quality of experience.
There is another side to assessing QoE: the economic one. Though people may be more likely to shop at a store or business where quality of experience is higher, higher prices to provide more pleasant experience can actually turn some consumers’ experiences negative. Business owners often have to strike a balance between doing what they can financially to create positive reviews, and maintaining a budget that will not create negative feelings. Spending too much on aesthetics, employees, or supplies may mean having to raise prices and reduce customer satisfaction.