I was chartering unknown territory when I set foot in the venue for Salesforce World Tour 2019 in New York City.
The tour — which voyages multiple cities across the US and the globe — is the flagship event from Salesforce, covering everything from the multitude of Salesforce products, their integrations, and of course, user and customer experience (CX).
The event was branded as “a day of innovation and inspiration” on its website, and upon entry to the vast expanse that is the Javits Center, I was able to sense these ideas in the ambiance.
Let me set the scene: the ground in the reception and main halls was coated in green carpet, with large sculptures of the characters found in Salesforce products, particularly those of its Trailhead characters, decking the convention. They too were surrounded by greenery: shrubs, trees and fireplaces kept them snug.
Modern-day carollers were warbling Christmas tunes with a dose of beatboxing. Further along in the Trailhead-themed area, a wide array of brands set up shop to tout their latest products and innovations. Makeshift theaters (with no enclosures) were set up for some of the sessions; much in line with the Trailhead world, the seats here were little tree trunks.
Further down, the sessions were a bit more sophisticated, with larger volumes, larger screens and headphones provided for all attendees. I was excited to have a listen and imbue as much CX knowledge as possible.
Here are some of the key learnings I acquired:
Creating 1:1 Opportunities with Conversational Commerce
One of the first sessions I attended stressed that the best shopping experiences are personal. This means taking the catered in-store (or bank, etc.) experiences into the digital world. As such, websites and UX take the role of digital salespeople. Like a real sales associate, they must act as someone who helps customers find the products they want.
This, in turn, creates increased engagement with your brand, which encourages loyalty. A personalized CX is a kind of 1:1 experience customers have with brands, but since there are no sales associates online, digital players must employ conversational commerce into their strategy.
Conversational commerce refers to an e-commerce method that employs various means of inciting conversations. This includes using chatbots on sites and apps, artificial intelligence (AI) and the newer advent of voice technology which includes speech recognition.
Salesforce relayed the importance of using VIP chatbots, which ask site visitors what they’re looking for upfront and in a casual way. These bots can then help set up customers with a real associate, who gives recommendations based on the info shoppers gave to the bot, removing an annoying layer of repetition with the associate.
This closes a loop and shows that you’re paying attention to customer needs. It also helps personalize the shopping process by digitizing its best assets. The key is to make these chatbots mimic human conversations as closely as possible.
Brands can leverage chatbots and other conversational commerce techniques (messaging apps, Siri, etc) as a means of helping customers solve hurdles, particularly those that they can take offline and implement it into the digital space.
All in all, conversational commerce has the prowess to streamline the shopping process to make it more scalable. It enables you to put your customers at the center of your business.
Improving VoC with Interactive Emails
Naturally, one of the lessons from the World Tour came from one of Salesforce’s own and relatively new innovations: interactive emails.
Implemented into the Einstein marketing cloud, along with other email capabilities this fall, interactive emails allow customers to provide their feedback in their own inboxes, as opposed to clicking on a link and being sent to a website or app.
This form of email extends the personalization factor that emails already can provide, so brands ought to tap into this trend. It also enhances email UX, as it augments emails with a web-like function.
Essentially, it’s a new form of VoC, providing customers with the convenient option of staying within the comfort and privacy of their own email.
Brands can capitalize on interactive emails by attaching a survey or poll at the end of their message to collect vital customer opinions and attitudes. These can be towards a number of digital or customer experiences. Alternatively, brands can dedicate entire emails for this purpose.
For example, a fruitful interactive email strategy is to simply add an open text box so that a customer can type in any concern, effectuating a service case to be created — all without the need to create a new email or search for an answer elsewhere on the net.
Interactive emails provide a great brand experience and can be used across industries.
Undergoing a Customer Revolution for All Sectors
Brands are competing on experiences — whether they know it or not. As Parker Harris, the Salesforce Co-founder and EVP remarked in the keynote session, “customers may love your products and services, but do they trust you? if not, they will move on to someone else.”
This rings true even for niche brands and those in more “serious” sectors, ie, B2B and other non-retail fields. Consider this scenario: there are two banking services that offer the same kind of accounts, with limited restrictions and fees. However, one offers a customer-centric UX in which customer service and website sessions are quick and hassle-free.
Clearly, customers will gravitate towards the bank with the better experience. Given that the financial services vertical is known as being less tailored for experiences, competing on experience may seem like a forbidding challenge.
However, even basic financial tasks like checking a debit card charge and disputing it can be leveraged and turned into a personalized, well-serviced experience. To achieve this, the UX should be made frictionless and require the least amount of steps to do something, ie report a fraudulent card charge.
For example, if customers report a fraudulent charge via a chatbot or by phone, they’ll often get redirected to another representative or department most suited to handle their case. A common UX source of annoyance is being asked a second (or third time) to repeat an issue already reported. Thus, when rerouting customers, or getting back to them after a break, associates should be fully aware of their issue to tackle it head-on, instead of wasting time asking for specifics.
No one wants to waste time, so if your customer services are optimized for speed and their issues/preferences recorded, your customers will notice. Dovetailing to this idea is the general approach chatbots take in conversing with customers: the chat shouldn’t start with “how can I help you?” but rather by asking something more concrete, showing that you understand your customers.
This can be gathered from their previous purchases or VoC feedback or even past chats if it’s a returning or logged in customer.
Putting Customers First Digitally
Although it lasted for roughly a workday, Salesforce World Tour 2019 has fired up my neurons. The main takeaway from this convention is that digital experiences need to require minimal effort from users to either complete an action or traverse your site in general.
Aside from seamlessness, the event accentuated the need for personalizing and customizing experiences. The reasoning for this is that if you don’t, you will lose quality customers. The impact you as a business should aim to create is that of making your customers feel understood and listened to.
Per the recommendation of Parker Harris et al. in the event, you should also incorporate artificial intelligence (AI) into your digital strategy, whether it’s through live support, standard chat boxes, or even in your customer data collection.
When you do, you can bet on their return to your site — and not just for browsing purposes.
How We Prepared for the 2019 Salesforce B2C Commerce Partner Demo Jam
The Salesforce B2C Commerce Partner Demo Jam is going down tomorrow, and we’ve been busy polishing our own live demo performance, and figuring out the best way to showcase our new and improved digital experience analytics platform.
Here’s a look at how we’ve been preparing to take home the Demo Jam crown…
What Sets the B2C Commerce Partner Demo Jam Apart
With participants having to do away with slideshows, presentations and videos, the challenge was how to create a condensed, 3-minute, to-the-point live demo of our solution.
If that doesn’t set the event apart, its setting and rules will. That’s because the Demo Jam is set up like a game show, meaning one team will walk away the winner.
The visitors are a live audience of approximately 80-100 spectators, as hungry for the next best thing as we are. We’re also in it to win it, so we can’t wait to square off with the five other partners, execution style.
Joking aside, we’ve been working up a storm in preparation for the Demo Jam.
How Contentsquare Prepared for the B2C Commerce Partner Demo Jam
We made sure key stakeholders from Marketing, Product and Sales were involved in prepping our performance.
At a tactical level, we launched an internal brainstorm, inviting the entire Contentsquare US team to ideate over pizza and booze — the best possible stimuli, of course. With so many great minds in one room, our brilliant Content Director recommended breakout sessions with 3 separate teams to streamline the collaboration.
What surfaced were 3 easily applicable concepts, and 1 winning idea that inspired a theme, script and the tapping of members from our Solutions Engineers, Digital Marketing and Client Success teams to creatively present the idea.
Building on Our Partnership with Salesforce
This event is critical to our partnership success with Salesforce, because it enables 3 key opportunities:
Exposure: elevating the visibility of Contentsquare to prime stakeholders is an evolving challenge, and Demo Jam is an event that is promoted by Salesforce to and by their teams, who strategically promote partner solutions to clients and prospects.
Competitive benchmarks: Demo Jam feedback and consensus are instant, relatively speaking. The Insight Link Partners ascertain from the event hosts and audience questions, and ultimately the voting results, is a useful indication of whether or not your presentation and use case value mapping is resonating with attendees and prospects.
Demand generation: Customers who watch the performance and are interested in learning more about partner solutions opt-in to receive info. Need we say more?
Our Unique Demo Jam Take
Our singularity springs forth from our platform. The Contentsquare solution visualizes data in a unique way, and can show any brand directly from its website view where customers are getting frustrated or stuck across the acquisition funnel and which content is encouraging conversions.
We display unique behavior and revenue attribution metrics directly onto the web page — which elements of content have a high Attractiveness rate, where visitors Hover and hesitate, what sections of the page drive revenue etc… Demonstrating this always brings the “oohs and ahhs.”
Why We’re in It To Win It
Aside from the fact that winning is universally fun, Contentsquare has powered Customer Experience insights for Salesforce customers like GoPro, L’Occitane, Crocs and the Gap, helping their team make data-driven decisions, innovate the experience and increase revenue. Winning the demo jam helps publicize how we can prove similar results for more of Salesforce customers who haven’t heard of us yet or are still considering how to best invest in their digital CX.
Closing Off on the Demo Jam
The Demo Jam prep was great fun, and helped align the entire team around a common goal. Everyone on the team has a unique take on how to best tell the Contentsquare story, and we wanted to bring all these perspectives together for this exercise. We also discovered hidden talents across the team — turns out we have a bunch of thespians and scriptwriters in the office! (As ever, we’re reminded that when good people come together, great things can happen.
Tune in to watch us go head to head with 5 other Salesforce partners during the webinar at 11 am.Dreamforce 2019: What We Learned at one of Tech’s Biggest Events
In retrospect, my first time at Dreamforce — a summit for innovation and cutting-edge technology — was much how I imagined it would be: a three-day techy delight party. Within an hour of landing, I noticed the groundswell badge-carrying, intentional session trekkers and got to key-note crashing.
Salesforce knows how to set a conference vibe with the ukulele opening performance, with horn shell blowing duos wishing attendees “a wonderful and blessed Dreamforce event.”
Salesforce Product Previews
Amid the sensory overload of DJspinning, Obama-stanning, and expo hall cacophony were some of the most exciting Salesforce product previews I’ve seen to date. Starting with enhanced capabilities to Einstein, a service cloud, the A.I. algorithm is now powering customer call centers with natural language processing to understand the context of the conversation, and surface the most relevant knowledge-article for the associate.
The pain this solves is reducing the hold time and consumer policy referencing, which enables Einstein to close customer cases 31% times faster. This cuts out 10 minutes in operation, making for workflow efficiency and overall better and faster work.
I was left most curious about the future of Salesforce’s new, custom-built, multi-channel CMS, as it highlights agility for digital teams to organize and sustain every aspect of their asset creation. This allows them to hone in on their viable potential to tailor connector integrations to bolster their capabilities.
Also exciting was the news rollout from Salesforce B2C Commerce LINK Marketplace, confirming that LINKpartners like Contentsquare would be transitioning to the AppExchange, an online marketplace for Salesforce apps, components and services that connects customers with a business’s solutions.
This will enable a deeper, more seamless deployment for customers, including ours. It is well in line with the Customer 360 mission, and underscores the substantial partner ecosystem investment they’ve made this year.
3 Tips for Future Dreamforce Attendees
Interested in attending Dreamforce? Here are the three tips I would give to Dreamforce novices moving forward to maximize time and energy onsite:
- Map your business and product objectives to the right internal Salesforce teams, stakeholders and sessions. There’s an app for that, which was fairly effortless to navigate and use to schedule meetups 4-6 weeks prior to attending. San Francisco has phenomenal eateries and coffee shops; take advantage of the opportunity to treat stakeholders for 30-minute syncs away from the pandemonium.
- (Dual) partner up: connect with mutual partner customer success teams to align on scaling integrations and for the best ways to measure and amplify results with joint-compelling narratives.
- Double down: Salesforce soldiers and their respective trailblazers are in full-effect at Dreamforce. Therefore, the best way to gain face time and address challenges live and direct is during the event where they are projecting motivation and building new-year momentum.
All in all, I left Dreamforce too blessed to be stressed, and easily more informed on how Contentsquare can extend the value of Salesforce solutions than when I arrived.
Firsthand Insights from Salesforce Connections 2019
The third week of June marked the annual Salesforce Connections, a 3-day event centered on building potent customer experiences using the Salesforce platform. It was the perfect timing since one week before, we announced our integration with Salesforce B2C Commerce Cloud — a partnership that allows Salesforce Cloud clients to access Contentsquare insights in an enriched eCommerce management experience.
Besides running our own booth and sharing our customer experience tips with digital leaders from every vertical, we soaked up a wealth of insights from trailblazers in retail and walked away with some learnings of our own.
Here is what we learned at Connections 2019.
Strategizing the Lifetime Value of Customers
Our first takeaway from the customer experience event is one of the most important things any e-tail player should know, and any business owner for that matter: the maintenance of the lifetime value of customers. Ecommerce platforms can particularly capitalize on this, having the digital space at the core of their communication and access to a wealth of data about the preferences and shopping habits of their audience.
The lifetime value of customers, as its name suggests, refers to the continuous value that a select customer base can bring you. These customers are more than one-time buyers; rather they are those that have established something of a loyalty-based relationship with your brand, and as such are the best candidates for cross and upsells.
The idea behind lifetime customers involves positing a strong grip on customer retention — and beyond. The latter point of “beyond” refers to creating unique customer experiences set to distinguish you from other e-tailers, and by providing friction-free customer journeys across all channels.
With personalization now one of the standards of a good customer experience, being able to deliver highly customized, intent-based experiences to your audience will go a long way in securing their loyalty. And we’re not simply talking of personalized emails or product recommendations — understanding the nuances of customer behavior and navigation patterns is key to creating journeys that speak to what your customers are trying to achieve and how they wish to go about it.
Taking the 360° Approach to Customer Experience
There was also much talk about how marketing tactics can best benefit from a 360-degree approach, i.e., one that adds value for customers in every channel and at every touchpoint.
Consumers today expect to integrate multiple digital — and offline — touchpoints into their shopping routine. This omnichannel approach gives brands access to more consumer behavior data than ever before, and digital leaders have already been leveraging this wealth of data to fine-tune the experience for their most profitable segments.
Brands today cannot be successful unless they understand what is engaging your customers and where they’re struggling. You can begin this on digital, since some aspects of digital experience (DX) can be transitioned into other marketing channels — even the nondigital variety. For example, some images perform better than others; some copy engages better than others. You can measure it on digital first before going forward.
Automating the Digital Experience
Customer expectations of a streamlined experience have pushed brands to experiment with automated solutions across channels. Implementing automation in transmission strategies (think MailChimp and other mass email platforms, social media and text messages) has been the dominating automation technique and has helped brands deliver individualized messaging to consumers.
But aside from automation that facilitates content transmissions brands are also investing in tools to automate processes, such as conversational bots that guide navigation and replicate a level of customer service and guidance more often found in-store.
And the impact of automation is not just client-facing. As the volume of customer behavioral data increases, so does a brand’s capacity to predict behavioral patterns and UX performance trends.
This ties into the idea of artificial intelligence (AI), where machines can take automatic actions based on their own programming, rather than that of human command. AI can extend to the analytics space, granting you crucial alerts on customer behavior deviations or unusual happenings on your site.
Creating an Optimal Customer Experience
Marketers and ecommerce professionals should always be on the lookout for methods to deliver an exceptional customer experience. While you can’t read your customers’ minds, you can always theorize their intentions with concentrated behavioral data. Customers are communicating with your brand with every digital interaction — analyzing their journeys and in-page behavior is the best way to learn what they are trying to achieve and what is preventing them from completing an experience or transaction.
Aside from our learnings from Connections, we want to point out that we don’t only boast about building fantastic customer experiences; experience runs deep in our blood. During Connections, we brought out our friends from GoPro, whose bold, unique approach to digital content creation is a true inspiration. If you didn’t get a chance to pick up one of our “Golden Tickets” and chat with our team of UX-perts, don’t forget we’re always on hand to answer your customer experience questions!Why Our Turnkey Salesforce B2C Commerce Integration Is A Game Changer For E-Commerce Experience Makers Everywhere
Today we give our clients the ability to quiz their digital properties about customer engagement and turn these answers into visual UX cues that can be leveraged by anyone on the digital team. The natural next step in democratizing data for all digital experience makers is to make our specialized metrics available where they can have greater reach and more impact — right in a team’s eCommerce dashboard.
That’s why we’re thrilled to be joining forces with the world-class Salesforce B2C Commerce platform, and giving brands a shortcut to our solution through the Salesforce LINK Partner Marketplace. Now, teams using Salesforce B2C Commerce can directly access our exclusive KPIs to understand the fastest ways to increase conversion, revenue and overall digital happiness.
By adding Contentsquare to your Salesforce B2C Commerce, you can understand what’s driving your conversion numbers, run meaningful A/B tests, measure the ROI of creative content, and make the most of your acquisition spend. And you can do this across your entire ecommerce team, day in and day out.
Insights For All (Or, No More Optimizing In The Dark)
A doctor wouldn’t prescribe drugs without knowing what was wrong with their patient. And you wouldn’t dream of putting on makeup in the dark. So why do so many UX improvements still stem from something as error-prone as instinct? Or from click data that assumes all customers have the same intent, needs, and goals across all web sites? Or from an analysis not readily accessible to those making the decisions?
Customers are telling you what they expect from your specific brand’s site or app experience with every click, scroll, or hover. Our solution captures all these interactions and translates them to a language anyone can understand. This means you don’t need to rely on analysts to crunch the numbers for you — from eMerchandising to art direction, everyone can access the same clear insights into which actions need to be prioritized.
Our integration with Salesforce creates a shortcut to these insights inside your eCommerce platform. No need to see experience-building and experience-improving as two separate things — now your team can improve continuously inside one system, and reduce speed to optimization.
Because our one-click insights come in a format that is digestible and makes sense to everyone, your team can quickly agree on priorities and be confident in their impact. By understanding what your specific customers want from your brand, your team can create a unique brand experience that is relevant to customers and rewarding to your bottom line.
Digital Happiness: There’s A New E-Commerce KPI On The Block
Many psychologists will tell you that being understood is even more valued than being loved. And value is exactly what brands are expected to bring to the table today. Knowing where your customers exit and whether or not they convert is interesting. But knowing why they left and why the journey didn’t end in a purchase is actionable.
That’s why we analyze all mouse movements, including Hovers and Scrolls, and why we’ve developed unique metrics such as Attractiveness and Conversions Per Click; we take into account how consumers engage with all your content to give you a richer understanding than a simple page exit rate ever can. When you consider that over 50% of content never gets viewed, you realize the depth of the gulf you have to cross to establish an emotional brand preference that results in sales, margin and loyalty.
The digital trailblazers at GoPro have already been leveraging the power of our next-gen analytics with Salesforce B2C Commerce with great success — with results such as an 80% increase in conversions.
With storytelling such a huge part of GoPro’s offering and of the GoPro.com experience, the brand has a vital need to tell a rich digital story while encouraging direct-to-consumer conversions. For everyone’s favorite lifestyle brand, that meant enriching the experience with bold, brand-relevant content in a way that also positively impacted the ultimate sales.
Supercharge Your eCommerce With Turnkey Integration
Right now there are more than 350 brands who regularly rely on Contentsquare insights as a part of their workflow. Today you too can access this level of customer understanding in Salesforce B2C Commerce in a few clicks. We look forward to welcoming you into our community.
Contentsquare Helps Brands Grow Revenue and Loyalty Through Exclusive Behavioral Insights Powered by Salesforce Commerce Cloud
Integration with Salesforce B2C Commerce Gives Teams Access to Unique Customer Conversion and Content ROI Metrics Within Their Commerce Dashboard
NEW YORK, June 5, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Contentsquare, a leading digital experience optimization platform trusted by brands like Avon, Kenzo, Sephora, and GoPro, is making its actionable customer behavior insights available to brands through the Salesforce LINK Partner Marketplace.
Fueled by intelligence, Contentsquare goes beyond traditional KPIs to give brands a granular understanding of the performance of their web, mobile site and app — down to which in-page elements are encouraging visitor engagement and which are stalling conversions. When paired with Salesforce Commerce Cloud, Contentsquare’s exclusive engagement and revenue metrics (Content Attractiveness, Revenue per Click, Hesitation Time, etc), Salesforce B2C Commerce clients can quickly see how to streamline their product search process, tailor customer journeys, and enhance content for conversions.
Global lifestyle brand GoPro uses Contentsquare on a daily basis as its “source of truth” for understanding customer behavior and delivering inspirational experiences to its community of content-hungry fans.
“I have never been more stoked to see a technology solution like this one that makes it easy for businesses like mine to scale quickly and achieve our aggressive goals,” said Kathy Ando, Senior Director of eCommerce, GoPro. “GoPro.com is stronger, smarter, and more prepared to take on massive digital transformation through Contentsquare and Salesforce B2C Commerce. Our Conversion rate has never been this strong, thanks to the actionable insights from Contentsquare and the flexibility SCC affords us. Contentsquare has armed GoPro with the fuel to propel our velocity and Salesforce B2C Commerce Cloud is our launching pad.”
The Contentsquare integration available through the Salesforce LINK Partner Marketplace provides brands like GoPro an enriched eCommerce management experience. Brands no longer have to toggle between systems to understand visitor behavior in order to troubleshoot issues or zero in on best practices. Valuable input from our common customers will continue to shape our integration roadmap throughout 2019.
Empower the Entire Commerce Team
With Contentsquare’s full capabilities at their fingertips — including the CS Live browser extension, which displays KPIs directly onto the brand’s Salesforce B2C Commerce site — the entire eCommerce team can leverage highly visual data to quickly prioritize the UX actions that provide the biggest improvements and identify previously unseen opportunities for growth.
“This integration is the natural next step in our mission to democratize access to insight and empower all experience-builders with access to a deep, straightforward understanding of why customers behave the way they do on their sites and apps,” said Jonathan Cherki, CEO and Founder, Contentsquare. “Consumers today want integrated experiences and so do the teams that are working every day to raise digital standards. We are proud that our experience insights solution is available globally on the Salesforce LINK Partner Marketplace.”
Contentsquare experts and members of the GoPro team will be available at Salesforce Connections 2019, the customer engagement event of the year. The ContentSquare integration for Salesforce B2C Commerce Cloud is currently available on the Commerce Cloud Marketplace.
Salesforce, LINK Partner Marketplace and others are trademarks of Salesforce.com, Inc.