Digital customer experience (the result of all customer interactions with your brand online) is the driver behind any purchasing process. That’s because customers’ impressions of your online presence shape their buying decisions and level of engagement.
So, it comes as no surprise that customer experience beats pricing and product as the number one priority for companies.
And that’s where tech comes in: the right tools can do wonders for digital experience, helping create a smoother customer journey, from the moment they land on your site, all the way through to purchase, and beyond.
Curious to see how? Let’s take a look at the best technologies and methods to help improve digital experience for your customers.
When your customers need help with purchases, or even just navigating your site, who are they going to ask? After all, it’s not as if there’s a sales associate ready and waiting to help them like you get in physical stores.
Well, live chat is the closest you can come to that immediacy of service people get in store. Visitors can send a message to your team, as soon as an issue arises, and receive the support they need – from product recommendations, to clarifications, to solutions.
In fact, live chat has been very popular among customers as a way of communicating with businesses, and research suggests that more than 41 percent of customers now expect to see live chat on your website.
So, the question isn’t whether you should have this channel available, but rather how you’re going to do it right. Two key considerations in particular are: choosing a platform that’s integrated with other channels – so you can easily move customers to the channel of their choice and have a unified view of a customer’s history and details – and making sure your employees have the right skills to offer great service over live chat.
Cobrowsing is one of those technologies that aren’t very well-known, but are very likely to cause an “aha” moment for anyone who learns about them. This means they’re undeniably helpful for improving digital customer experience, and they do it in a way that no other technology can quite match.
What do we mean by that? To explain, think about how we communicate over online calls. At a time when remote work is becoming more and more commonplace (accentuated by the pandemic), most of us find ourselves sharing our screens with customers and colleagues to help us illustrate what we’re talking about. Now, imagine you could actually interact with your customer’s screen and show them how to do things they’re having trouble with, or even do those things for them (like set up an account). Well you can, and securely, with cobrowsing.
Because cobrowsing improves communication, it also has direct benefits for business. Customers get their issues resolved faster without wasting time explaining what they see on their screen, thus reducing the costs of customer support. Faster and smoother service makes people happier, too.
Ah, these chatbots. They’re the talk of the town, and with good reason – they’re there 24/7 to support your customers when your team is out, they can be fun, informative, and even instantly capture leads for you.
In fact, there’s a whole array of chatbot use cases across different industries and functions that help you offer better service to your customers. For example, they can:
And plenty more besides. So, having a chatbot is an opportunity to be always ‘on’ and cater to your customers’ needs in a far more cost-efficient manner than asking your agents to do night shifts or having to hire in different time zones without having the resources to manage remote teams. The most important considerations are around creating the right chatbot scripts and designing your chatbot to converse with different types of users across a variety of situations.
Tools like Google Analytics, HubSpot, Hotjar, Hootsuite, and other similar platforms give you insight on who your customers are and how they behave, as well as gauging their opinions of the digital experience you offer them. (e.g. via NPS surveys).
This knowledge gives you the information you need to improve that digital experience. You can, for instance, remove bottlenecks in the customer journey that your customers talk about. Or, you can personalize your interactions with them, by placing the right type of call to actions in the right places or recommending relevant products.
This works on both an individual level and on a larger scale.
Let’s say, for example, you see that a particular customer often looks at your sports gear products. Based on this, you can set up your chatbot to recommend relevant products or take this insight into account when you’re launching email campaigns and advertisements. An example that marketing expert Neil Patel mentions in his blog is how ice cream company Ben & Jerry’s A/B used analytics technology to test an advertisement for a new product launch.
On the population level, you may find that customers from Australia like more visuals, while customers from Europe like more data presented to them. This can help you make decisions on how to present information to each region.
Every company needs to ensure its website is aesthetically pleasing and easy to navigate. And that’s because your prospective customers will most likely check out your site before they buy from you, and if they don’t like it, they’ll probably think less of you. (Also, did you know visitors will form an opinion on your website in 0.05 seconds?).
So, make sure your design team follows best practices for website design. This includes using data from tools like Google Analytics, Ahrefs, SpyFu, Optimizely, and more to plan ahead and make sure the look and feel of the site matches the preferences of your customer personas. Then, make sure your design team is equipped with well-made technology to do the actual design and development, such as Figma, Invision, Balsamiq, and Zeplin.
The truth about the digital customer experience is that it’s complicated – it involves every single interaction or channel your customers go through, after all. This means that you need a lot of planning to understand what your audience wants and how to deliver it (for example, mapping the customer journey).
But, using the five technologies we mentioned above is a sure-fire way to keep your customers’ interest and offer them better experience whatever stage of their journey they’re in.
Nikoletta is a Content Specialist at Acquire. She's a writer and editor with an avid interest in data, tech, communication, and the customer journey.