How do you know if your Customer Experience, Technology Product or Service is too Complex?


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Pictures are a courtesy of by Katerina Kamprani
Pictures are a courtesy of by Katerina Kamprani

We all want to design products, services, and experiences that are relatively simple and intuitive to use. That makes sense: an easier-to-use and onboard product, services is going to have a much stronger user base. A stronger user base translates to revenue. Some have even said the “race for simplicity” in experience design is valued at $86B. You want a piece of that pie. This itself is a complex subject and we discussed it in detail also in this original article here.

But how do you know if your product-services and Customer Experience are too complex?

A few things to consider:

Can you quickly summarize what the product or service is supposed to do? Someone considering a cloud option wants to know: Will it be secure? What will be my cost savings if we migrate to the solution or to your cloud? How will we operate on the cloud with our data-driven services? Will we need your managed services or we can lead by ourselves? If you can simply answer those initial questions, good. If those questions add more complexity in their answers, that might be inside the limits of too complex as a product. Bear this in mind, though: technology will always be associated with a certain degree of complexity in the eyes/minds of any customer. If you can guide them through that complexity in a simple way, you’ll win business and referral. That is also a challenge there for the sales and solutions teams not just for the R&D and design team.
Does the marketing require lots of complicated resources? People don’t like to read marketing materials. It’s not fun for most of us. If it’s going to require lots and lots of marketing to explain this product/service, that’s going to be a harder, longer sales cycle process on the market — longer than most of the tech sector.
While designing this new product/service/solution, are you focusing in creating a user experience that is intuitive and easy to learn? If you are testing it, what are the responses of your co-creation, testing and community feedback in the initial phases? Is your team happy with the initial outcomes or not yet there? If your team is unhappy or tired and rethinking more than normal period of your solutions, it’s likely too complicated.
Do you need excessive onboarding materials or do you have the right boarding material to make easier? Or is the product/service largely intuitive enough that onboarding can be minimized to an extent? Are you using Userlane , to make easy and intuitive the experience for your user even if complex software or hardware?
What does the data say? Do you have information on users and how they interact with your product or service? Do you have data-driven products (such as hardware/sensors/etc.) that allow for preventative and proactive changes where necessary? This can help you to see patterns of both customer behavior and friction points. Ask beta users and your community of users. Salesforce typically does this in their 1.3 million member active community, and 2 million overall community of users. Also check in your Voice of Customer feedback, and all channels your organization have to interact and receive feedback online or face to face for customers feedback in the early stages of your development. The cornerstone of design thinking is always listening to feedback and iterating from that feedback, and that is how organizations create better products and services as organizations. That’s what you need to be doing. Especially in cloud, where you can constantly be updating and developing better products as the customer keeps working without any issue.

Some people get confused around complexity vs. simplicity at a B2B-B2C level.

For years, the idea has been that design for B2B must be more complex – more feature, functionalities and many options for solve one process or problem for users, etc. — and the design for B2C can be simpler because it can be more emotional and high-touch and consumers don’t necessarily need to manage 100 features for solve issues or to enables better results for customers’ accounts, or several features and functionality parameters for anything. Why not adapt and personalize it exactly for your end user, then you can deliver a better easy much better designed solution? SAP is doing that, Salesforce is constantly improving and Amazon did that level of individual personalization in their sector.

But now the major differences among B2B and B2C are blurring in user and customer experience, and you’re seeing more B2B companies doing emotionally-driven, human design, in both digital and customer-facing experience design work instead of trying to overly-complicate their products. Look at what SAP is doing in Berlin, that we mentioned before. SAP is a company that understands, like Google or Salesforce or anyone, it does them no good if their products are complex. If the product is complex and not enough people can use them, can they generate more revenue? No. So the goal is simplicity.

In my source article the discussion focused in The first step in designing great products services and customer experiences and in how understanding the complexity of your product and services is crucial and how will impact negatively your bottom line.

Pay attention there and read also with actionable ideas, how simplicity will positively impact your Customer Experience and Bottom Line. ALWAYS AVOID COMPLEXITY… Simplicity is Easier, engaging, profitable and better!

Pictures are a courtesy of by Katerina Kamprani
Pictures are a courtesy of by Katerina Kamprani
Ricardo Saltz Gulko
Ricardo Saltz Gulko is the founder of Eglobalis and the European Customer Experience Organization. He is a global strategist specializing in B2B enterprises, with a focus on Customer Experience, Professional Services, Design and Innovation, as well as data-driven services. Ricardo empowers major global enterprises to generate new revenue and enhance market competitiveness through the delivery of exceptional global CX, and he employs design to drive adoption and growth. The end results of his work include high growth, increased retention, loyalty, innovation ignition, adoption and growth.


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