It’s arguable that customer experience, or CX, has been vital for customer retention ever since people were choosing which of the two village blacksmiths to use, but it’s probably never been more critical than today.
In 2021, after 18 months+ of pandemic stress, consumers have sky-high expectations and incredibly short fuses, so if you mess up on your CX, you don’t have much wiggle room to fix the relationship. Globally, one out of every three consumers say they’ll abandon a brand they love after just one bad experience, but on the flip side, brands that deliver excellent CX see loyalty increase and up to a 16% price premium on their products and services.
Although enterprises may think they’re hitting their targets, their customers mostly disagree. Well over half of US consumers report that CX from most companies leaves much to be desired.
The good news is that top CX doesn’t require an army of highly trained customer support agents. Although customers value human interaction, what they really want is to access information to make an informed purchase choice, a friction-free purchase journey, and fast responses when something goes wrong. They care less about whether they achieve that through human or automated assistance.
COVID-19 helped push digital CX by widely changing the general perception of digital interactions. Now they are far more widely accepted — as long as you get it right. Put a foot wrong, and people will blame your tech. As a result, enterprises are taking a new look at ways to use data and analytics to drive excellent CX experiences.
As noted by analysts Dun & Bradstreet, ““After the pandemic, there is no going back; the world as we know it has been turned upside down. Customer needs have changed overnight and marketing departments have needed to adapt. [..] The best marketers are already looking at how they can use data and analytics to re-tune their tactics, support their customers and play a critical role in the survival of their business.”
Here are 4 ways that enterprise CX is changing for the better, thanks to data and analytics.
1. Maximize customer value
Automating customer support processes shouldn’t be seen as an opportunity to cut down your customer success teams. Instead, automation frees up your workforce to focus on qualitative customer insights that can be derived from the data and guide your customer-facing processes.
Mining customer data more deeply allows you to glean valuable insights into tone and customer voice, as well as overall positive or negative sentiment, so you can put customer value front and center.
It may be necessary to upgrade your data and analytics systems to cloud data storage like a data warehouse, data lake, or new data lakehouses. While there’s a lot of debate around Snowflake vs Databricks, the main thing is to invest in a cloud data system that supports real time data updates and offers an intuitive interface so employees can run their own queries.
2. Deliver a seamless customer journey
Friction-free interactions are at the top of customer demands, and the only way to deliver those is through better use of data and automation. Unfortunately, fewer than half of today’s executives say they clearly understand how robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) can improve their CX.
Customers don’t want to have to repeat their details every time they are handed over from one person to the next, and they don’t want to have to start their complaint or query all over again if they transition from AI chatbot to human support agent.
Cloud data warehousing ensures that all workers can access the same customer data, no matter where they are located, while low-code systems allow every employee to access customer information without waiting for help from data science or tech support. Finally, integrated data and analytics help feed information to the customer service agent, whether human or a bot, so they can deliver support that feels like a single conversation.
3. Enable personalized customer experiences
It’s 2021 and it’s all about personalization. Customers want personalized marketing messaging, sales processes, and products and services that relate directly to their individual needs and preferences. It’s not just a consumer-facing issue; B2B buyers are also looking for content that is relevant to their business’ pain points.
Integrated data and analytics with advanced visualizations help the entire organization to understand your audience more deeply, so you can offer the products and messaging they are looking for. Product, marketing, sales, and customer support departments all depend on a thorough understanding of customer behavior and interests.
4. Switch to self-serve customer content
We’re also seeing an increasing demand for self-serve customer experiences, whether that’s B2B buyers who want information about your solution, retail customers who want a self-led returns process, or banking users who want to check their balance on a digital portal.
In turn, that requires far more powerful analytics and automation. Marketers need ways to push the right content to the right visitor at the right time; financial institutions need to provide friction-free portals without exposing themselves to risk of fraud; and retailers need to verify returns processes, all without human interaction.
It may be complex, but once you integrate your data and analytics for this purpose, you’ll be able to scale customer experience without losing personalization.
Advanced data analytics is raising the standard for enterprise CX
With the right data tools, enterprises can ramp up the CX they deliver without adding stress to their existing workforce. Integrated data and analytics and cloud data storage can enable every company to provide friction-free, personalized, self-serve customer experiences while tapping into the deep customer insights they need to remain ahead of the competition.