Defining and delivering what customers want are the keys to your business success. As organizations look to improve upon the customer experience (CX), it’s time to go beyond isolated touchpoints and look at the entire journey. The customer journey heavily influences what an organization will ultimately transform to and is the guiding light for how a business deploys end-to-end solutions for a holistic experience.
Uber’s disruption of the taxi industry is a prime example of how one organization leveraged end-to-end technology to identify and solve industry problems. By extending the experience to include both the front and back office, focusing on employees as well as customers, Uber flipped the traditional CX business model in the taxi industry on its head – establishing seamless experiences on both sides of the user journey. Another example of a company that reinvented its space to build frictionless experiences is Amazon. Streamlining its shipping process and providing IoT technologies – like Dash for quick reorders and Alexa to assist in ordering and status – Amazon facilitated a whole new digital buying experience.
Looking at both Uber and Amazon – how each redefined CX in their respective industries, leveraged real-time data and created seamless access and payment processes – this is clear: brands need to evolve from merely offering products and facilitating transactions. To redefine CX for your own business model, you’ll need to look at various reference points to inform your approach – here we explore three ways you can get started with building your own frictionless customer experiences.
Consider The Wants and Needs of the User from the Beginning
The key here is to start with the journey itself – engaging with real people from the beginning to understand their wants, needs and what motivates them in their decisions to create more seamless journeys based specifically around this. This means accessing data online and offline and deploying end-to-end solutions – both to leverage the right mix of technology to connect the whole of the customer journey and show you what pieces of your data are actionable.
Essentially, you should be doing two things – speaking directly with your customers, not through a third party, and using your qualitative data to provide deeper insights into what they are looking for in an experience. Also turn your focus towards making the same connections internally with your employees. Take a page from Uber and identify the pain points you need to solve from both sides. This approach will help you better understand what needs to change in your current model and how you address and resolve problems for the long run.
Deploy technology to analyze behavior in real-time, from real users
To support the full user journey even further, use “Day in the Life” techniques to analyze real bahaviors and interactions with the tools and platforms your customers are engaging with. This will help to achieve the journey they want. Analyzing your data from actual customers in real-time will give you the basis of what you need to create a new and unique customer journey. You also get the opportunity to understand how your customers interact with the journey you’ve set up for them and identify new pain points. To build on the importance of your quantitative data, looking at your qualitative data, as noted above, will provide even deeper insights into the specific patterns that will ultimately help support you in resolving the pain points uncovered and disrupting the CX model.
Cross platform integration (or system integration) and the use of cognitive technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), can also significantly eliminate friction and pain points in this regard. For example, in e-commerce, cross platform integration and AI work in tandem to better refine results of customer searches bringing them more targeted offerings and clearer paths to purchase, rather than making them navigate through long lists or across several web pages to find these products. Cognitive technologies provide you with guidance and insight to let customers seamlessly accomplish their goals with higher confidence and less anxiety.
Bring in a customer experience expert
Armed with the right analysis and insight, you can revisit current business processes to see what may be causing friction in implementing a new model for your user journey and remove non-value time that doesn’t support your goals. Working with industry experts in CX also helps you make more sense of the data you are analyzing, as they can get into the finer details from your data, gathering user psychology that paints a full picture of the customer want, need and intent. From here, the actionable insights collected can provide you with the best ways to change what you’re doing into a better business process that supports you in truly rethinking CX in your industry.
Today’s customer journeys are no longer linear paths to purchase, and B2B journeys are particularly complex with multiple touchpoints. Customers look to technology and insights to eliminate friction and guide them through their buying journey. Remember – each touchpoint on a customer’s journey is connected and gives you a unique opportunity to solve challenges and reinforce a great experience. Don’t miss those by not having the right insights, technology and people in place to disrupt an industry. By implementing a frictionless approach through end-to-end solutions, you can improve all touchpoints on the user journey, ensure customer experience is at the forefront of your business strategies and create new revenue streams.