Elingo research has shown that, while the type of industry will greatly influence customer experience (CX), ultimately it is a matter of choice and first contact resolution.
This is one of the key takeaways from research The Genesys State of Customer Experience that was conducted and released by Genesys.
The research reveals how consumers prefer to interact with a business, what personal information they are willing to share in exchange for a better experience and what businesses miss when it comes to delivering an exceptional experience across their customers’ journeys.
“Some industries face fierce competitive pressures – where the customer experience literally can make or break a business,” said Joshua Solani, CX Advisor at Elingo.
“In other industries, such as government agencies, competition isn’t a factor. For example, renewing your driver’s license isn’t always classified as a ‘great experience’, but there’s nowhere else to go. When consumers have the option to choose, the customer experience is critical.”
Solving the problem first time was identified as key criteria to CX. According to the research, 29% of customers value first contact resolution the highest when it comes to customer service and support interaction.
“It is also interesting to note that many businesses fall short of the mark when it comes to the expectation of immediate service,” added Solani.
“It is vitally important to initiate a mobile-first strategy, in other words engage with customers on their terms. Your customer experience reputation and brand are at stake when you make your customers wait for assistance, regardless of the channel. This is driving growth in service channels that offer more immediate response, like social and self-service.”
Effective CX management
Solani says it was also evident from the research that customer experience management remains siloed and this presents the business with a real challenge.
He added that effective CX management takes collaboration and coordination across multiple organisations and there are a few tactics that can be used to help the decision maker.
“Know your customers,” he said.
“There are segmentation strategies to get you started. It’s equally important to obtain a clear picture of how customers want to engage and interact with your business.
“On-going customer segmentation activities are crucial, as is understanding the lifetime value of each customer and segment. Another important factor is customer experience tracking.
“Customer longevity, loyalty and customer lifetime value are most frequently tracked as components of the customer experience tracking effort; marketing is more likely to report repurchase timing than customer care managers, and surprisingly less than 30% of companies overall track channel preference.”
However, truly getting to know- and understand the customer means gathering data and utilising this information strategically.
Solani says it is incredibly important to use data to guide decisions.
“Providing customers with a seamless journey often means anticipating their needs and using analytics to make informed decisions and guide the next action,” he said.
“This is what often is called a ‘journey nudge’. Nearly nine of ten consumers value their customer service agent knowing their account history and current activities and seven in ten value having the same customer service agent help them each time.”
One of the most important areas of the overall CX to keep in mind is the manner in which a customer engages with a business or service provider.
The research shows that channel switching is the new norm and timing is everything with channels.
“There are ramifications when your business does not support a seamless customer journey,” explained Solani.
“Channel switching is the new normal when it comes to how consumers engage with a business.
“And there is a cost for businesses that don’t support channel switching.”
In essence, value-add to the customer means creating and ensuring a 360-degree customer experience and this is based on several best practices for managing customer journeys.
“This means – know your customer, use journey mapping and use the right technology,” said Solani.