Stepping into the future of digital CX
- Q: How has the modern customer changed how brands think about digital vs. in-person interactions?
- Q: What do customers expect from a brand in 2023?
- Q: How will brands use customer insights to evolve their CX?
- Q: If you had to give your customers one piece of advice, where should they invest their time and money in 2023?
Contentsquare sat down with customer experience experts for a Q&A to learn how they’re using customer insights to evolve the digital CX in 2023 and beyond.
Bazaarvoice’s VP of global client success, Emma Maddison, Monetate’s omnichannel testing and personalization account manager, Gianluca Bannwart, and Contentsquare’s solution expert, Lauren Burges, shared their perspectives and advice to help brands build more human digital experiences.
Q: How has the modern customer changed how brands think about digital vs. in-person interactions?
Emma Maddison: The emergence of social and the exponential use of social media has changed customers’ expectations of what type of content resonates with them. It used to be that branded content alone could grasp adequate attention and lead to conversion. But now, today’s consumers, especially the millennials and younger, are leaning toward people like themselves to be inspired and convinced. This means that the digital experience has to evolve to incorporate the right content to appeal to consumers.
Emily Weiss, the CEO of Glossier, made a statement that struck a chord with me and the rest of us at Bazaarvoice. She said that Amazon solved online buying but killed shopping in the process. It’s a true statement because if you think about how you buy online, you start by telling the search engine or site what you want. The inspiration and delight you could get in-store are eliminated.
Especially during the pandemic, shoppers missed that important component that makes shopping a pastime, and they turned to social media to ‘browse.’ This makes it essential that brands and retailers start engaging with customers at that point of inspiration and maintain the experience that customer craves throughout the shopping journey on their site.
Q: What do customers expect from a brand in 2023?
Lauren Burges: At the end of the day, customers demand greater value in the form of value exchange. What do I mean by this? ECommerce is a good example. Customers come to the site to exchange their money for your product.
However, value exchange doesn’t have to be in the form of an eCommerce site. Someone could be visiting your site to receive exchange value in the form of knowledge with a blog post or to find out more about a product you sell. Whatever the reason, your site needs to provide value to consumers. If not, they may associate your brand with negative sentiment.
Emma Maddison: Customers expect a brand to know them and are much more vocal about holding brands accountable to transparency, authenticity and trust. In our industry, we see the rising demand to hear from peers versus brands. This gives brands an incredibly powerful opportunity to embrace customers as part of their brand image and turn them into advocates.
Q: How will brands use customer insights to evolve their CX?
Gianluca Bannwart: Many brands recognize that being relevant is now required. Sometimes you keep adding on new experiences, but there can be a drawback to the website’s performance. Yes, you need to personalize, but at scale and without any drawbacks.
Lauren Burges: If you think about customer experiences before the iPhone, customers and brands had limited interactions. With the growth of the internet, eCommerce, and technology, customers and brands are more accessible than ever. After all, eCommerce is a 24/7 storefront, and social media provides customers with a platform to spread their experience with your brand, whether positive or negative.
Customer-obsessed companies that offer easy and seamless experiences for users will thrive. Companies that do not focus on the “meat and potatoes” of the online user experience: design, data, and customer journeys will underperform.
Emma Maddison: Consumers have the power, and they’re well aware of it. I agree that customer-obsessed companies will be the ones to thrive, and the rest will become irrelevant.
Where we are right now is a point where customers and brands are starting to close the gap between eCommerce and traditional shopping. We’re in a mode of trialing and testing content and understanding what role segmentation plays in the types of content that convert.
We will see an increased demand from the customer to understand them and cater to their needs.
Q: If you had to give your customers one piece of advice, where should they invest their time and money in 2023?
Gianluca Bannwart: If I had to give one piece of advice, it’s to focus on building incredible customer journeys. Considering the economy, we all need to do more with less. With consumers spending less, they’re buying less, and it’s likely to result in fewer conversions. Focus on converting the audience you have! Also, get more value from the tools you have.
Lauren Burges: Several reports have come out that state that consumer’s tolerance for poor brand experiences will fall for the first time in three years! My most significant piece of advice is to invest in customer experience. You don’t have to do a complete redesign—sometimes, even the smallest of site changes can improve your website and have a big impact on your customer.
Emma Maddison: Much like Lauren and Gianluca have said, embrace what your customer wants. Don’t shy away from making customers part of your site experience and brand image just because you haven’t done it in the past. It’s the way of the future, and you will nurture such a base of advocates, which of course, means revenue.
If you want more customer insights and digital experience predictions, check out our blog, 10 eCommerce trends transforming CX in 2023.