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The Digital Customer Experience Playbook

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The Digital Customer Experience Playbook

  1. 1. HeadquartersForrester Research, Inc., 60 Acorn Park Drive, Cambridge, MA, 02140 USATel: +1 617.613.6000 • Fax: +1 617.613.5000 • www.forrester.comFor Customer Experience ProfessionalsWhy Read This ReportToday’s multichannel customers demand better experiences than they get from firms that designunderperforming one-off touchpoints. Faced with an expanding ecosystem of legacy websites, mobilesites, and apps, firms need a plan that will help them align their investments with their customers’ mostpressing needs. How can they do this? They can accomplish this by taking a user-centered approach tounderstanding the needs and behaviors of their multichannel customers and filling in the experiencegaps. Customer experience professionals can use this playbook to help their firms develop a road map forimproving the effectiveness and cohesiveness of their digital touchpoints.Improve Your Digital Customer ExperienceExecutive Overview: The Digital Customer Experience ImprovementPlaybookby Ron Rogowskiwith Harley Manning and Allison StoneJune 25, 2012Poor Digital Experiences Leave money on the tableMore than ever, digital touchpoints are critical to business success.1Customers have an array of options forinteracting with your company whenever and wherever they like. But when digital touchpoints frustratecustomers, companies:■ Send customers to higher-cost channels — or worse, to competitors. What do people do when theycan’t complete their goals in their channel of choice? If you’re lucky, they try another channel, raisingtheir frustration level and your costs. If you’re not lucky, your customers will switch their business toa competitor with better-designed digital touchpoints.■ Dilute their brands. Firms need to prove their value to customers while making it easy and enjoyablefor their customers to do business with them. When you’re difficult to work with, customers lose faithin your brand. Worse, today’s customers can express their displeasure through social channels wheretheir amplified voices can make their network of friends also lose faith in your brand.(Sometimes-Small) Digital Improvements Pay OffCompanies need to be smart about how they spend their money on digital design projects. By honing inon key moments of truth in their customers’ most important journeys, you can uncover problems thatare often simple to fix. At the same time, you’ll gain insights that can help you design solutions that movecustomers along the path to achieving their goals. Relentless focus on how customers behave leads to:■ Higher conversion rates. When you make it easy for people to find what they want, they’ll do morebusiness with you. It’s that simple. Even if your digital touchpoints aren’t intended to sell directly,when prospects get the answers to their questions and can see how to take next steps, they movefurther down the purchase funnel and closer to becoming paying customers.
  2. 2. For Customer Experience ProfessionalsImprove Your Digital Customer Experience 2© 2012, Forrester Research, Inc. Reproduction Prohibited June 25, 2012■ Lower cost of sales and service. Customers often want to help themselves. When your digitaltouchpoints provide clear answers to their questions, they can do just that — and avoidmoving to costlier channels. For more intricate processes like business-to-business (B2B)sales where multiple parties look for information specific to their roles, well-designed digitaltouchpoints can shorten the time and reduce the effort required to close a sale.■ Engaged customers. When you remove the obstacles that get in the way of customers’goals, you increase the likelihood that they’ll come back for more and further cement theirrelationship with your brand. And if the experience is as enjoyable as it is easy to use, you’ll earnwhat money can’t buy: word of mouth and social referrals that can enhance your reputation.Use This Playbook To Drive Digital CX ImprovementsThis playbook explains the benefits of putting customers at the center of a digital customerexperience (CX) initiative, demonstrates how to prioritize your investments, shows you how toimplement changes, and explains how to measure results (see Figure 1).2The following steps willhelp you deliver the right digital CX:1. Discover: how user-centered design can pay off. We define a process for developing a deepbehavioral understanding of your customers’ goals, aspirations, and needs. This insight will helpyou develop an empathetic approach to multichannel design. You will learn about the businessbenefits of making digital CX enhancements as well as how to build a model you can use tomake the business case for making improvements.2. Plan: how to determine the investments that matter most. To determine the most high-impactinvestments, this playbook will equip you with the tools you need to develop your digital CXstrategy. It will show you how to match business goals and brand objectives to customer needs.It will also lead you through the process of prioritizing changes and building a road map foryour most critical initiatives.3. Act: how to deliver on customer needs. Executing your digital CX strategy requires a high-performing organization. We’ll show you how digital CX teams are structured and demonstratethe most important practices to use for designing the channels that meet your customers’specific needs. And if you need outside help, we have provided a list of digital design companiesand their capabilities to help you build a shortlist of vendors to evaluate.4. Optimize: how to measure and adjust. Completing a set of design improvements is not theend of the journey. We’ll show you how to establish the right metrics to track success. We’ll alsogive you benchmarks that you can use to determine how your efforts measure up. And finally,we’ll show you how to manage ongoing improvements that will help you develop a more unifiedcross-touchpoint experience.
  3. 3. For Customer Experience ProfessionalsImprove Your Digital Customer Experience 3Forrester Research, Inc. (Nasdaq: FORR) is an independent research company that provides pragmatic and forward-thinking advice to global leaders in business and technology.Forrester works with professionals in 19 key roles at major companies providing proprietary research, customer insight, consulting, events, and peer-to-peer executive programs.For more than 27 years, Forrester has been making IT, marketing, and technology industry leaders successful every day. For more information, visit© 2012 Forrester Research, Inc. All rights reserved. Forrester, Forrester Wave, RoleView, Technographics, TechRankings, and Total Economic Impact are trademarks of ForresterResearch, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Reproduction or sharing of this content in any form without prior written permission is strictlyprohibited. To purchase reprints of this document, please email For additional reproduction and usage information, see Forrester’s Citation Policylocated at Information is based on best available resources. Opinions reflect judgment at the time and are subject to change. 76761Figure 1 The Digital Customer Experience Improvement PlaybookSource: Forrester Research, Inc.76761PerformanceManagementAssessment OrganizationVisionStrategicPlanProcesses BenchmarksLandscapeRoad MapTools AndTechnologyContinuousImprovementBusinessCaseDISCOVER PLAN ACT OPTIMIZEEndnotes1 Ninety-three percent of respondents to Forrester’s Q4 2011 Global Customer Experience Peer ResearchPanel Online Survey said that customer experience is a top strategic priority for their firms. The survey alsorevealed that at 77% and 74%, respectively, online and cross-channel customer experiences topped the listof CX priorities for 2012. Only 29% reported improving the in-store experience as being a priority, while amere 22% wanted to improve phone self-service.2 Please refer back to the online document to see the associated reports in the playbook. See the June 25,2012, “Executive Overview: The Digital Customer Experience Improvement Playbook” report.