Closing the CX Gap: Moving Towards Response Agility

Last month, our team spent a few days in the Big Easy for Acquia Engage. We had a great time at the event and were proud to be a Silver Sponsor, as well as an 2019 Acquia Engage Award winner in the Dreamers category: Leader of the Pack - Financial Services for our work with client CIM Group. Acquia shared their visions and insights for the future and it's clearly focused on customer experience, with perspectives from digital innovators like Mark Grannan, senior analyst at Forrester, Acquia Founder and CTO Dries Buytaert, and Acquia CMO Lynne Capozzi and ChiefMarTec Editor Scott Brinker who spoke on the customer experience gap, and how brands are still failing to connect with their customers and deliver exceptional experiences. 

Appnovation's John Mozayani and Anton Morrison presented their session on Wednesday with a look at just that- closing the CX gap and the actions needed to get there. After their presentation, John and Anton opened up the floor for questions and a lively discussion from participants on what challenges their facing in their own organizations and how they can get started on a CX strategy focused on delivering consistent and unified customer experience.

If you weren't able to make it to Engage this year, here's a recap of Appnovation's session and key takeaways.

*Update: Read Part 2 here: The “Perfect” Customer Experience Doesn’t Exist. But a Valuable One Does & stay tuned for the rest of our Customer Experience blog series, exploring topics like defining the value of CX, design systems, customer journeys, and big data.


Poor Experiences Can Happen Anywhere

What do your customers want?

We believe human experiences drive business. Our strategy team establishes ‘human experience’ as the principal benchmark to find useful and desirable outcomes for our clients and their customers.

So, what is a customer experience? 

Today, it’s all about how much the user experiences means to you, and for your brand, what it delivers for your users/customers, and how it stacks up against your competitors. This particular space is something that companies are investing in more than ever, looking to deliver the ultimate customer experience. Businesses are looking to expand their digital capabilities, while delivering clearer, faster, and more intuitive platforms for a wider audience and growing customer base. 

Having a gorgeous, inviting window display is all well and good, but if the store inside is disorganized and not able to sell you the products you need, what is the point? 


Even as you read this, you can probably recall customer experiences that range from awful to amazing, sites where buying is seamless (Amazon, for example) and everything in-between.


The Customer Experience Gap is Real 


From a Forrester research report, businesses across several industry verticals ... and 72% believe they are already providing a superior CX.

In two industries, cable and retail, leaders outperformed laggards by 24 percentage and 26 percentage points, respectively. 


Having the best product or price, what used to be thought of as the key to winning customers, is certainly no longer the case, and hasn’t been for awhile. Customer experience isn’t just the latest in business buzzwords, it’s quickly becoming the number one priority for business executives in 2020. 


And with 86% of customers willing to pay more for a greater customer experience, brands with superior CX, and who are customer centric companies can be up to 60% more profitable with a 2% increase in customer retention, which is the same as cutting costs around 10%.


The New World is Customer-Centric

You may recognize the old world way of doing things, companies overcoming their challenges by throwing more money at it. Not enough love? Buy some ads. New challenges in the market? Build some more functionality, build more, build faster, build cheaper. We're not really stopping to listen to what customers really need and what they really want. 


Welcome to the new world, choosing innovation over perfection, delivering value based on actual consumer insights and research, and building relationships instead of transactional relationships, and rewarding customer loyalty. It means brands must now be responsive to change, and embrace agile. 


Being agile is not just about speed, it’s not about command and control, but about maturity in decision control, a balance of governance vs empowerment, enablement of capabilities to go to market rapidly, consistently and at scale.

Expectations have changed, but we're still challenged by the increasing complexity of the experiences that we're trying to build. Building customer centricity in an organization, and even defining the value of CX: the tools, data, metrics, takes a major shift in organizational culture, and requires leadership that supports, cultivates and builds a team that makes customer-centric thinking a clear priority. 

Customers expect a single unified, delightful experience. With so many options out there, you have to provide them with what they need in a meaningful and frictionless way. It also means that companies have to think about the way that they market and organize channels to customers. We have to break the silos, we have to put the customer at the center of a brand’s shared vision, putting the emphasis on serving the customer’s true needs.

Customers highly value a flawless customer experience from your brand. In today’s business scenario, customer experience and personalization have emerged as the competitive currency. More and more companies are exploring and investing in different approaches to develop individualized customer experiences. 


Closing the CX Gap: It Takes a Village


In 2020, customers have the power, and are changing the rules of business. Delivering on customer expectations is certainly a challenge, but something that is an essential component- and an opportunity, for becoming a leader in a busy and overcrowded market. 


Update: Read Part 2 here: The “Perfect” Customer Experience Doesn’t Exist. But a Valuable One Does & stay tuned for the rest of our Customer Experience blog series, exploring topics like defining the value of CX, design systems, customer journeys, and big data.


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