Digital Customer Experience Is Your Enterprise’s Best Investment

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“By 2020, customer experience is expected to overtake both price and product when it comes to differentiating a brand.” (Biz Report)

Years back, price and product ruled the market. In many ways, the cheapest product sold the most and because communication was more difficult brands could even get away with customer complaints related to product/service shortcomings. However, this is no longer the case today. Customers expect that each and every time they interact with your brand, they will encounter a memorable experience. Something that attracts them, something that is different and at the same time seamless and effortless. Deliver on their expectations and they won’t worry if you happen to overcharge them. Because customers pay over the top knowing that you can deliver a great customer experience and engage them completely. Yes! Nowadays, ‘the experience’ just about triumphs everything else.

Successful enterprises not only know this but also understand that the best  customer experience investments their company can make are ones that focus on a strong digital customer experience.  Companies that consistently rely on modern technology to close gaps in performance, to offer a more personal experience and to build trust, regularly see happier customers, increase in sales, and more loyalty as a result. Yet, many companies longing to achieve these results struggle to identify the best plan of action for the perfect digital customer experience. This doesn’t have to be the case; it just takes a little knowledge and understanding of how to make the most of your investment.

Prioritize Your Outline Customer Experience
When it comes to an online experience, consumers are far less patient. A recent study by Nielsen concluded that a 10-second wait for a page to load can make almost 50% of consumers give up, leave, and search for a competitor. In fact, researchers at Microsoft found that if a website takes 250 milliseconds longer to load than a competitors, consumers will move on. Bottom line: when people have a less-than-favorable experience online, they immediately fault the company. In these times, there is no excuse for a bad digital experience.

Create Brand Loyalty Through Consistency
A consumer’s impression of a company is created by a variety of individual touch points. It’s when companies do not provide consistent digital experiences that the consumer ends up with a disjointed and poor impression of the business and brand. Over time, it’s the frustrations caused by these inconsistencies that can erode brand loyalty.  To avoid major issues, do your best to identify customers’ digital interactions and devices. Understand the goals of your customers, motivations, and strive for as much detail as possible. Research your customers so that every phase of their digital experience is accounted for and is unique to their individual needs throughout their customer journey.

Improving Customer Experience Can Also Improve Your Operations
Companies that specifically work towards improving the customer experience are also improving other parts of the business such as online support, mobile customer experience and personalized digital experiences. In this way, the company meets the site visitors where they are and in turns helps themselves through smoother interactions.   An obvious example can be found at any Apple store.  Apple changed how point-of-sale works.  No one waits at a register.  Any Apple employee can ring up your purchase.  The customer wins. Apple wins.  Look for these win-win opportunities that make your customers happy and at the same time, make doing business easier and faster.

Digital Experience Platforms Shape the Technology Investment
The best software platforms to invest in are those which targeted customer experiences, marketing and commerce on smartphones, tablets and computers – really any device where a customer will be interacting. Therefore, it is crucial to optimize the use of digital tools and technologies, so your customers are getting the fastest, most accurate, next level experiences every time they visit your site.

One technology platform that can help any large-scale enterprise with the challenges of digital customer experiences is a modern CMS platform. Modern multi-channel CMS platforms help companies digital customer experiences faster, create brand loyalty and increase revenue.

Digital Customer Experience Must Be More than Meets the Eye

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Today’s distracted, preoccupied, and unpredictable customers carry their high customer experience expectations with them as they effortlessly move across their devices and touchpoints. Customers are beginning to demand a unified experience from every company with which they do business.

In the age of the customer, digital transformation is as important as ever. Web features and functionality, design, native mobile apps vs. mobile web, etc. are all features in which we naturally think of in terms of improving the digital customer experience. Yet, everyone is working to improve the front-end experience, so it’s up to you to not only keep up, but raise the bar.

Online retailers such as Zappos and Netflix are obsessed with ensuring a great customer experience in both their behaviors as well as the digital experience. Large organizations like these have a lot of resources to invest in customer experience.  But what about the lesser-known companies that have worked just as hard, if not harder, to create a great digital experience for their customers? Consider New Belgium Brewing a company out of Fort Collins, Colorado. The company is owned entirely by its employees and their non-traditional business approach goes to their customer service as well.  This small beverage company is driving substantial company growth through their digital success. Because they invested in the front and back end and created a new website, as well as launched a new mobile site so their biggest fans could order directly from their phones,  they have seen tremendous revenue and profit growth. Since the employees own the company they are as invested as ever in ensuring it succeeds, keeping customer service on point, is a big part of that.

As an organization you may be thinking, that’s great for those companies, but how should my company invest in the future? One easy yet important place to start is to focus on two dimensions of your marketing: the digital customer experience and digital operational excellence.  You must figure out what you need to improve by leveraging data, assessing existing touch points from the perspective of your customers, and by giving your customers a more personal experience and reaching out to them.

Additionally, consider redesigning the experience you currently offer by adopting a proven user-centered design process.  You should be consistently assessing opportunities and restraints of devices and touch points, while continuing to enhance, test and understand your customers.

With your brand in mind, ensure the digital experience you offer your customers supports your objectives and supports the overall experience and ecosystem of the company. It should create metrics based on your business goals while unifying the overall customer experience in a seamless approach.

While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, due to the importance digital has in driving customer experience, as well as the major impact it has on company growth, your company should do whatever it takes for digital mastery. Each business should focus on their own set of customer needs, competition, and capabilities that lie internally.

It’s important to keep in mind that businesses should pursue both digital customer experience and digital operational excellence simultaneously. One is not more important than the other and both are critical to improving the customer experience.  By implementing these practical ideas you can make big impacts on both your business and your customers.

Crafter Software Recognizes Top Community Contributors

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Crafter Software has had an incredible year of producing innovative technology and enabling digital business transformation for organizations globally. This year, we are thrilled to acknowledge the excellent performance and notable achievements of our top community members

The strength of open source software is the community of people who collaborate and contribute. This year we recognize the top community contributors for outstanding contributions of enhancements, fixes and community participation.

Top community contributors for the Crafter CMS open source platform are:

Want more information about Crafter CMS, the most modern open source Java-based platform for crafting personalized digital experiences at blazing speed? Visit craftercms.org for more info and free downloads!

Top 5 Reasons Visitors Prematurely Leave Your Site, and How Personalization Can Fix This

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It only takes minutes, or even seconds for potential customers to be unsatisfied with their experience on your website and click on to a new one. Instead of accepting a high bounce rate and hoping that a new prospect will come along, it’s time to make your website work for you. Nothing is more effective in solving this issue than by personalizing the user experience with content relevant to the user. Luckily, the tools to make your site more likeable so prospects don’t leave, are available. All you need is a little content personalization to make your site a hit. The following are the top 5 reasons why people aren’t sticking around once they get to your site and how content personalization can help.

#1 Too Many Generic Ads
Sure, advertising is important to help with revenue, yet, when done poorly ads can also do damage and create a negative user experience. For starters, you need to be as proactive as you can with your advertising messages. Personalize your offers to every individual that comes to your site. Although this may sound like a lot of work, it actually is fairly easy with the right content personalization tools. Modern CMS solutions like Crafter CMS help authors design rules and content that enable you to personalize ads automatically based on the user’s past site history and profile information. By using relevant content you can grab the attention of the right person and match the ad and its offerings with the user that needs them.

#2 Too Much Irrelevant Content
When engaging your website visitors you speaks directly to them and their needs so they stick around. Google’s search interface and algorithm took over the internet because it was simple, on point and provided effective relevant information to users quickly.  Your content and the user experiences that it powers needs to provide that exact same value.  With the right approach and technology, your personalized content will stand out and attract users.

#3 Outdated Content
If too much irrelevant content is bad, outdated or wrong content is worse. Sites should be updated regularly to demonstrate your commitment to quality and customer service. It is extremely important to keep your content as current as possible because it causes confidence and loyalty in your visitors.

#4 Your Lead Generation Tactics are too Overt
As you know, your content is extremely valuable. The trick is to making your audience see this value. A contact or “lead form” can be intimidating and off-putting to a user. Not every visitor that heads to your site wants to give their personal information. Yet, when you have the best set of fully-automated tools, your site can have the ability to have a timely call to action without being too aggressive. By doing so, leads are not lost and instead, are gained more rapidly.

#5 Not Being Memorable
By having an “exit intent offer”, you engage your prospects with a valuable piece of relevant content that they will find worthy enough to channel them back onto the page. By being strategic with your relevant content just before they exit your site, they are more likely to take another look and re-engage. This is a simple but highly effective strategy that can make a huge difference in the overall conversion of leads.