This is the second part of a two-part Digital Customer Experience Strategy series. The first part covered all aspects of constructing a customer experience strategy. We ascertained the importance of online and offline touchpoints, and how these form the stepping stones for every successful customer journey.
Simply ensuring that some steps in your customer journey are digital isn’t enough. The rapid pace of technological development means that an effective digital customer experience strategy learns from and adapts to the latest trends to continually deliver the best results. A strategic approach is truly omnichannel, requiring businesses to integrate all of their digital channels, from their website, app, email campaigns, social media platforms, to chatbots, and live chats. This leads to the development of an obstruction-free and cohesive experience for customers across the board.
Establishing an effective digital CX strategy
As discussed in our preceding post in this series, an effective digital customer experience strategy is focused mainly on ensuring that digital touchpoints in the customer journey function effectively and create meaningful differentiation.
Remember, it only takes one dysfunctional touchpoint to derail the entire customer journey. On the flipside, a single unique digital touchpoint can also jet-propel a brand into the stratosphere. So, with that said, let’s get to the latest trends in digital customer experience strategy.
Top 7 digital customer experience trends
Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are technology-centric drivers that create a more personalized CX by injecting humanity into the content. Did you know 63% of consumers interacting with chatbots have no idea they’re in the middle of an AI-driven conversation? And with AI advances, that metric grows higher daily. I bring this up first because all the trends emerging in the customer experience strategy space have AI steering the technology to an extent. Moreover, Fortune 500 enterprises are no longer the only ones that can afford purpose-structured software; it’s affordable to SMBs and even startups now.
If you want to derive the very best that AI technology offers to bolster your digital CX strategy, consider the following incredible benefits of the top trends in AI-driven CX today:
1. Predictive personalization
Predictive personalization is an extraordinary AI technology feature where the digital customer experiences are aligned around real-time buying behavior patterns of customers, making for highly relevant brand recommendations. AI has the uncanny ability to align with customers’ wants and desires at the speed of light, nudging customers for relevant deals and even the right times to reorder.
2. Omnichannel optimization
AI empowers omnichannel optimization by making sense of gigantic data volumes that would ordinarily take humans weeks to wade through. Indeed, the Fortune 1,000 enterprises agree, with 999 in the category admitting they invest in AI technologies to maximize data analytics and transform the omnichannel experiences they deliver.
3. Chatbot-powered efficiency
Businesses are reaping the benefits of AI with improved chatbot technology. Chatbots originally started as a quirky edition to create audience attention with something different. At first, they were capable of only a few limited actions that were often faulty, creating more consumer frustration than anything else. However, today they’re a mainstream technological tool.
Why such a turnaround? AI innovations have expanded chatbot capabilities beyond expectations. Consider the following:
- Extensive studies indicate that chatbot advances, with AI in the mix, interacted successfully with 75% of inquiries in 2022.
- Chatbot improvement and versatility significantly impacts ROI by lifting the pressure off support teams’ shoulders, allowing the latter to focus on severe customer churn drivers instead.
- The research calculates that chatbot implementation will save companies in the US 2.5 billion hours in 2023.
4. Efficient customer journey
With AI and ML combined, businesses can improve their overall customer experience significantly. How? By creating knowledge bases comprising of expanded FAQs in a dynamic environment. In other words, AI seamlessly inserts new solutions to address every “iffy” CX component. This is especially important since it can provide immediate clarity for customer concerns, significantly shortening the journey from “purchase idea” to “buying”.
Doing so also reduces the number of touchpoints within the customer journey, arguably making it the most groundbreaking trend in digital customer service strategy today.
To better understand the nuances of digital customer experiences and how each touchpoint in the customer journey plays a crucial role, you can explore my first article in this series.
One of the best examples of AI in CX is the fast and smooth sequence when customers want to make a return utilizing an online option. At the click of a button, automation ensures that they get the return label, eliminating the need for customer support to initiate the action.
5. Predictive analytics
Predictive analytics has emerged as a powerful tool in developing a digital customer experience strategy.
What does predictive analytics really do? Suppose one could wave a magic wand to boost sales revenue significantly; what would you wish for? Many savvy marketers respond by saying – “Knowing how my audience will react to my promotions and communications.” Amazingly, AI has jumped forward to put that wand in your hands or at least give you an outcome that’s as close to that magic as it can get.
As mentioned above, enormous data flows are the fuel that AI feeds on, and one of the mind-blowing benefits that emerge is being able to predict customers’ reactions to your strategic moves. In short, predictive analytics digs deep into behavioral segmentation to generate an invaluable report. The latter outlines digital marketing actions connected to audiences’ expected reactions.
As AI and ML gallop ahead, predictive analytics will become an inescapable part of the digital CX strategy playbook. It’s probably the most dynamic, fastest-changing aspect of everything discussed so far because as the data accumulates, so will prediction accuracy.
6. Improved customer retention
The AI and ML paradigm’s lifeblood – current relevant data – depends on personalizing your customers’ experiences at every turn. What do the two have in common? Just this – when customers believe they’re experiencing meaningful services and brand benefits customized to their needs, they’re more likely to provide valuable feedback. This empowers businesses to customize the conversations they have with customers, referring to previous interactions and purchases to ensure customers feel recognized.
By providing businesses with a cohesive perspective, AI can help businesses make each customer feel valued, thereby remove the notion that the consumer is a forgotten number in a segment of thousands. This can build trust, thereby improving genuine feedback from the customers, providing businesses with the data they need to keep improving their CX strategy and improve retention in the long-run.
7. Boost cybersecurity
Cybersecurity concerns are top-most in your audience’s minds, and rightfully so. Customers will only share sensitive information if convinced that the company is implementing state-of-the-art technology to protect their data.
Data breaches and security collapses drive customers away from your brand in droves. Therefore, it’s important to hire top-class IT professionals to organize your cloud-based infrastructures – many of which are AI-connected – thus developing safeguards in the event of hacker attacks.
Cybersecurity considerations become even more pronounced, with many employees working remotely from home offices. Data security can disintegrate in a blink when a company no longer has all its digital devices under one roof and can’t monitor employees’ daily activities. Why? Because:
- Password protocols collapse.
- Digital files moving around different geographical locations is far from ideal.
So, companies must go the extra mile to close detectable remote work cybersecurity gaps to gain traction in the marketplace.
Join the latest in digital CX strategy
At the end of the day, a successful digital customer experience strategy is about exceeding customer expectations. A great customer experience is seamless, cohesive, and creates value for your customers – whether it’s with the right recommendations, insights, or even just owing to the efficiency of the process.
If you’re wondering where to start, Sogolytics has the answer. As experts in customer experience management, we can help you implement a solution tailored to your business. Want to learn more? Let’s get in touch!