With Technology Moving Faster Than We Can Adapt, How Can Businesses Build a Sustainable CX Strategy?
Customer experience (CX) has earned a spot on the high priority list for most businesses these days, and as a result, technology designed to help create amazing CX has proliferated. But it’s neither feasible nor smart to chase after every emergent product. Instead, savvy organizations start with a solid foundation and add new technology when it imparts significant value.
Build the Foundation
Companies with mature CX don’t shift strategy every quarter. They stay relevant in the midst of change by consistently delivering value and meeting customer needs.
Start by listening.
Customer feedback tells you what people need today and helps you prioritize projects for the future. In order to improve customers’ interactions, you have to know what they think about your company. 45% of companies with mature and well-developed CX plans rely on customer comments as their main driver for CX initiatives.
Define the Strategy
With a good understanding of customer feedback and your current CX, develop a detailed improvement plan to ensure all efforts are pulling in the same direction. The plan should explain how initiatives support business goals, such as increasing revenue, saving money or improving the brand.
And it should identify how you’ll measure success for each objective. A solid roadmap with broad buy-in will keep you on course even as tempting new tech pops up.
Make the Most of What You Have
With a plan in place, review current capabilities. You might not need to buy new software right away. What steps can you take with existing technology?
For example, tune the IVR or speech recognition interface for better performance. Improve the usability of web self-service and mobile apps. Integrate data sources for a unified view of customer experience.
Finally, look for any technology you own that’s not being used and figure out whether it can contribute. For example, you may have reporting tools that need better data feeds or agent desktop apps that people don’t know how to get the most of.
Strengthen Your Strategy with Proven Solutions
Once you have a well-defined plan and have made the most of existing capabilities, find the major customer pain points and address them using proven solutions with broad applicability.
Because you know how established products will perform and the best practices for deploying them, they let you solve big problems with less risk. And products which can serve all departments across several channels will continue to provide value in the long run.
For example, chatbots have made it easy for people to get questions answered quickly. You can deploy bots on any digital channel, and they answer questions about different topics, such as billing or order status, in one place. Online retailer Alibaba uses bots to handle 93% of all online questions, which saves millions in call center costs.
Callback solutions, like VHT Digital also offer proven results across channels and departments. A PwC survey found that 82% of Americans still want access to a person, even as technology improves.
In other words, people will sometimes want to speak with a person regardless of the cool CX apps you’ve implemented. And callback seamlessly connects them to representatives from your online or voice channels.
These products have consistently improved CX and lowered costs over millions of transactions, which makes them ideal foundational technology.
Focus on Flexible Architecture
As you build the CX tool suite, look for software that integrates well with other parts of your system. Since we don’t know what the future will require, you may have to tweak the strategy going forward and you’ll need tech that can flex with you.
Look for cloud offerings that deploy quickly and hook into your environment without major hardware investment. The best solutions will let you add features and users as needed so costs grow with usage.
Evaluate New Tech for its Value to Your Strategy
When you’re ready to consider shiny new products, keep the CX strategy front and center. Emergent solutions come with higher risk; they don’t have a long history of proven results and best practices behind them. So when exploring the cutting-edge, first ensure the value addresses your needs directly. And second, prepare your team to support it.
Artificial intelligence (AI), for example, is demonstrating incredible analytic capability, and it’s tempting to sign up. But to get results, you need people trained in the technology and teams ready to assess the data and act on it. It’s great to know how a customer’s favorite Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle character correlates with buying patterns, but how are you going to capitalize on that knowledge?
The pace of change in business products today can induce whiplash and make you second-guess your plans. But when CX strategy is fortified with solid customer feedback and clear business objectives, you’ll be able to whether the trends with a high-performing CX and your budget intact.