A couple of months ago, BairesDev’s own Damian Scalerandi wrote an article in The Daily Bundle discussing the importance of positive customer experiences. In it, he argued that “improving CX is an effective way to gain a competitive edge and set your business apart in the marketplace.” Then he went on to discuss some of the benefits of developing a plan to boost a customer experience.
Hopefully, you read that article and got excited about the idea of improving your CX (if you haven’t read it, go ahead and do so It makes several important points). But just wanting to revamp your customer experience won’t take you anywhere. You need to develop a robust CX strategy with multiple actionable points to actually get to the benefits Damian talks about. How can you develop such a strategy?
While there are different methods you can try to build a sound plan, I think the best way to start is to ask yourself the following 6 questions.
1. How Does Your CX Look Now?
As it often happens when planning a strategy, the first thing you need to do is assess your current situation. It’s all pointless if you don’t understand where you’re standing right now, even if you know where you want to go. So, you need to take a deep look inside and analyze the experience your customers have when engaging with your company.
Some of the things you need to consider in this assessment include your mission and vision, customer data (both quantitative and qualitative), business objectives, and customer metrics. What’s more, you should also take a look around to check how your competitors are doing, as doing so might paint you a better picture of where you are right now. Besides, surveying the market can already point you toward the potential paths you can take with your CX.
2. Which Are Your Biggest Pain Points?
The analysis of your CX will surely show you that there are things you could improve (don’t be so vain to think there won’t be anything—there always is something!). Those things are your CX’s pain points, the things that get on your customers’ nerves that are preventing you from offering a stellar experience for your clients.
Pain points are highly specific to your company and industry, so it’s impossible to list them all here. However, some examples include slow customer service, little personalization during engagement, lack of proper communication channels, too much friction in transactions, and lack of clear messaging around your brand. Understanding your pain points is essential as they can help you determine which are the best technologies and approaches to fix your CX.
3. What Is Your Expected ROI?
Outlining your expected return on investment is a critical component of any CX strategy. That’s because adjusting your customer experience will surely have you investing in new technologies and processes and might even force you to introduce major changes in your operations. All that takes time, effort, and money, so you need to be sure that you have the resources and bandwidth to undergo all that process.
The expected ROI has a major influence on how you plan your CX adjustments over time. Additionally, it’s crucial to secure the necessary buy-in from executives and team members that allows you to introduce all the necessary changes. That’s why your ROI should stipulate a date when you expect to cover the monetary expenses brought by the adjustments but also why you need to clarify what the final payoff will be in operational, logistical, and reputational terms.
4. How Will You Integrate New Technologies Into Your Existing Infrastructure?
Tackling some of the most common CX pain points will surely make you adopt new technology. A robust chatbot can help you with slow customer service, dynamic content through AI can help personalize your brand, cloud computing can remove certain roadblocks and streamline your transactions, and so on.
But before deciding which technologies are the best for your business, you’ll need to figure out how you’ll integrate them into your existing infrastructure. That might seem like a little concern, but it’s something you shouldn’t neglect. How come? Because trying to adopt a new technology to boost your CX might mean larger changes, such as replacing legacy systems or rewriting core components to ensure a better fit.
5. How Will You Measure Your CX-related Actions?
No strategy would be complete without the metrics to measure its success level. However, developing metrics for CX can be a tricky thing. How your customers feel about your brand doesn’t directly translate into quantitative measures. Sure, having increased traffic, longer online visits, fewer complaints, and more sales feel like good indicators of success. Yet, they don’t paint the whole picture.
To truly measure your CX success, you’ll need to take into account qualitative data as well, which you can only gather with surveys, interviews, and in-depth analysis of your exchange with customers. That’s not all. You’ll also need to develop metrics that are specific to the pain point you’re trying to solve, as there aren’t one-size-fits-all metrics for CX.
6. Do You Have the Talent To Act on Your Strategy?
Once you’ve answered the questions above, you’ll be ready to outline your strategy and start organizing the work ahead. However, there’s a task you should definitely do simultaneously—checking whether you have the skills to act on your strategy. Maybe your team already has the knowledge to implement the new technologies you need to address your pain points. Or maybe you have talent gaps you’ll need to fill. The important thing is to know where you stand.
When the brick-and-mortar stores of retail corporation Urban Outfitters had to close down during the pandemic, the company understood they needed to boost their e-commerce. To do so, they needed to make quick changes across the board, including improving their site’s navigation speed while reducing the number of errors in the platform. The company saw that they didn’t have enough in-house talent to tackle those issues as fast as they wanted, which is why they turned to BairesDev for help. That way, the company applied changes that might have taken months in a matter of weeks.
Mapping Out Your CX
With so many technologies floating around and so many opportunities available for all kinds of businesses, it’s easy to get lost and overwhelmed. That’s precisely why you need a detailed strategy to work on your CX: Such a plan can help you better define which technologies are best for you depending on the issues you face.
As Damian pointed out, having a positive CX “influences [your clients’] expectations and drives purchasing behavior.” With that in mind, you’d better pay some attention to it and the best way to do so is to start with this questionnaire.