An approach for creating exceptional customer experiences

02 November 2020 Consultancy.uk

The pandemic crisis, with its lockdowns, social distancing and customers reluctant to go back to stores, has accelerated the shift towards an all-digital shopping experience, from product searching and browsing to post-purchase services. Gianluca Bregoli, a Senior Consultant at Digital Works Group, shares how companies can create exceptional customer experiences and build brand loyalty. 

Digital transformation is happening at an unprecedented pace and organisations must adapt quickly. However, technology is only part of the equation. At the same time, customer engagement and outstanding customer experiences have never been so crucial. 

These two top priorities demand cross-function collaboration and alignment. Plus, a comprehensive understanding of the customer and a business model fit to navigate the challenges ahead. The solution is a digitalisation ecosystem that pulls together the different drivers that lead to engagement customers and exceptional experiences:

The digitalisation ecosystem

Customers

Meeting the needs and expectations of highly demanding and sophisticated shoppers, ready to switch to a competitor if the experience is not up to their standard, is a key challenge. Segmentation and targeting, customer profiling, understanding buying behaviours and preferences are imperative.

Customer journey mapping

Mapping how the customer journey is evolving – to keep delivering seamless experiences - necessitates a 360-degree overview of the customer and has to be defined from the customer’s perspective and not the organisation’s point of view. Businesses must aggregate and analyse data from multiple sources to get valuable insight. 

Channels

All-digital customer experience is synonymous for customer engagement through omnichannel experiences. Being in control of which channels consumers are using at each stage of the online buying process is a requirement for delivering tailored solutions and keeping interactions high. 

Communications

Effective customer communications require strategy development and planning, with KPIs to measure impact. On-brand messaging, a compelling and consistent narrative across channels, a benefit-based writing style and a customer-centric tone keeps consumers engaged.

Content

Customers expect their digital shopping experience to replicate the physical experience as much as possible. Hence, product-related information and descriptions, pictures or videos, as well as content at each stage of the online buying journey must be accurate, dynamic, relevant and personalised.

E-commerce

In the last few months, brands have adopted e-commerce solutions at different speeds and with mixed results. There have been winners, laggers and brands new to e-commerce. With no e-commerce strategy, adequate resources and infrastructure, brands will struggle to survive the current competitive market.

Technology

The “Low-Touch Economy” – a model in which sales and the attached services are independent of face-to-face interactions between customers and sellers – is pushing towards “digital-first”. From pre-sales to post-sales, new digital capabilities are to be built through the integration of technology and user experience to streamline internal processes and offer cutting-edge, automated but personalised experiences.

Organisation

A customer-centric and innovation-driven culture of testing, learning and acting quickly; clear vision and strategy; efficient data management; people with the right mindset and skills as well as adequate resources are the foundations for a successful digital transformation.

Conclusions

A successful journey to digitalisation is built on the effective orchestration of functions, departments and people. But also on the orchestration of data and systems to get meaningful insights. Insights that inform activities and ultimately results that are measured in terms of business value benefits; such as conversion rates, brand loyalty/advocacy, sales, efficiency and effectiveness.


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