Digital transformation isn’t just about solving tech problems, it’s about creating meaningful and enjoyable human experiences.
By putting Customer Experience (CX) Design at the center of your digital transformation strategy, you can drive digital change without sacrificing customer satisfaction.
As a business, there are many ways you can approach digital transformation, whether it’s something as small as implementing a new CRM or as big as reimaging your entire business strategy. But there is one element that lies at the heart of it all: creating a seamless customer experience.
Today, customers are more in tune with the digital world than ever before and expect companies to be the same. In fact, 56% of customers say they would not purchase from a brand again after having a bad experience.
The opposite is also true, with McKinsey reporting that CX-driven digital transformation can generate a 20-30% uplift in customer satisfaction and an increase in revenue by up to 50%.
Why you should keep digital transformation customer-centric
Digital transformation has often been compared to a tech race.
Who can incorporate the latest tools in their day-to-day work faster?
Who can come up with new product features first?
However, as companies rush to streamline operations and impress users with eye-catching interfaces, they often struggle to translate these tech-focused investments into actual value for their customers.
To succeed in this regard, companies need a solid foundation before adding more layers of complexity to their digital transformation efforts. This foundation relies on good Customer Experience (CX) Design that combines human expertise with technology to create memorable experiences and foster brand loyalty and trust.
What is Customer Experience (CX) Design?
Customer Experience (CX) Design is the process through which businesses intentionally design and organize their services and products in a way that maximizes customer satisfaction at every point along the customer journey.
It’s about putting yourself in your customer’s shoes to understand their needs, preferences, and challenges.
What’s the difference between CX and UX Design?
While CX and UX are closely related, they have different meanings and use cases in digital business transformation.
UX is more specific and focuses mainly on users' interactions with a digital product, looking to enhance this experience through usability, accessibility, and pixel-perfect interfaces.
CX is broader than UX and covers every interaction a customer has with a business, from the first point of contact (like seeing an ad) to post-purchase support.
Because it encompasses the whole customer journey, CX usually involves integrating multiple channels, such as retail outlets, customer service desks, online chat, chatbots, virtual assistants, and more.
The role of CX Design in digital transformation
CX Design ensures that any technical upgrades or process changes you make are guided by an understanding of customer needs and behaviors.
Here are a few ways in which CX Design can contribute to digital transformation and business growth:
Collecting and using customer feedback early and often helps you make data-driven decisions regarding what works and what doesn’t, including insights that can fuel behavior-based marketing and design.
Consistency across digital channels ensures that your CX delivery is aligned with customer expectations and you can meet them where they are. The goal of digital transformation should be to create personalized experiences by integrating channels, technologies, and departments.
Cross-departmental collaboration enabled by a CX approach means teams can work towards shared goals of improving customer satisfaction. This avoids siloed experiences that can frustrate customers, like having to repeat or re-explain information to different representatives.
A 360-degree view of the customer provided through CX doesn’t just mean access to high-quality, real-time consumer data but also the ability to organize your entire business operations around it and become what Forbes describes as a "customer company".
The 3 building blocks of Customer Experience (CX) Digital Transformation
A CX-driven digital transformation strategy requires not only changes across different departments but also undergoing a mindset shift from an exclusively technical focus to a people-first approach.
There are steps you can take across three core building blocks to develop a customer-centric vision.
CX building block #1: data-driven customer insights
One of the biggest advantages of the digital world is the data it generates. By leveraging this wealth of data through ML, AI, and predictive analytics, companies can understand customer behavior at a granular level and deliver excellent digital customer experiences.
In addition, by deriving insights from consumer data - which companies can do through dashboards, visualizations, and performance reporting - it becomes easier to set measurable goals for your CX transformation and track progress.
Building a customer-unified data culture
As a company looking to improve customer experience across all touchpoints, it’s important to create a unified data culture. This will allow you to connect the dots across various types of consumer data from transactions and website analytics to social media interactions and more.
Here are a few steps you can follow:
Collect: Gather data from all important customer touch points, making sure your data collection methods comply with data protection regulations like GDPR and CCPA.
Consolidate: According to industry research, using the same CRM across sales and service departments significantly improves success rates. Look into solutions that enable your teams to collect and access customer data from one single platform.
Analyze and act: Implement changes based on patterns and trends observed in the data. By aligning your KPIs and action plan with customer data you can make smarter decisions regarding areas that need to be improved.
Train: Use real-time data and insights obtained through customer orchestration to help your team feel more connected to your customers. Train your team on digital-first customer and data proficiency and make sure customer-facing employees know where to find the information they need.
Using data to improve customer experience in fintech and healthcare
Across industries, organizations are leveraging data-driven strategies to improve customer experience. Below are just a few examples of how businesses in the fintech and healthcare sectors are using customer data to offer better products and services.
Credit scoring using alternative data: Traditional credit scoring methods can exclude people with limited credit history. Fintechs such as Tala and Affirm are pioneering the use of alternative data like mobile phone usage, utility bill payments, and even social media activity to assess creditworthiness and allow broader access to financial services.
Behavior-based fraud detection: Payment companies and banks use behavioral data to identify and prevent fraudulent transactions. By analyzing patterns in millions of transactions, they can spot suspicious activity in real-time, protecting their customers and building confidence in their services.
Telemedicine and virtual health assistants: The pandemic led to a boom in telemedicine services. More and more hospitals and clinics rely on electronic records of patient data and online appointments via phone or video to provide personalized care remotely.
AI-driven personalized care plans: Healthcare providers use AI and ML algorithms to analyze a huge range of patient data, from medical history and lab results to lifestyle factors that might influence their health. This allows the creation of personalized care plans and treatment recommendations.
CX building block #2: highly personalized customer experiences
Whether it’s a movie recommendation based on your watch history or financial advice tailored to your savings, as modern customers we have come to expect at least some level of personalization.
The stakes of getting personalization right have become higher. 71% of consumers expect companies to deliver personalized interactions and 76% get frustrated when this doesn’t happen, says a McKinsey report.
Key steps to build a personalization strategy
Personalization is a key differentiator, so looking into ways to incorporate it into your digital transformation strategy can be a game-changer. Use the data you've collected to tailor experiences to individual customers and build a personalization strategy.
Understand your customer: when it comes to CX transformation and personalization, there is no single recipe that can address all your customers. This is why mapping your customer profile and journey is of key importance. Build detailed customer profiles and segment them based on shared traits and behaviors.
Go from simple to complex: personalization can be as simple as "Hi [insert customer name]" or as complex as a fully customized journey. Build on top of your existing resources, starting from your marketing emails and content all the way to more granular approaches like micro-sites delivering location-specific content.
Leverage technology: invest in and implement technologies such as AI, data analytics, and marketing automation tools that enable real-time personalization and dynamic content customization. By tracking individual customer behavior, these tools allow you to trigger personalized communication based on their actions.
Build feedback loops: collect feedback from your customers as well as your team to identify if there are any high-frequency roadblocks. Don’t just ask for feedback regarding customer expectations, also look into their experience with your customer service processes. At the same time, feedback from customer-facing employees can offer insights and valuable data points into potential CX issues.
A look into e-commerce AI personalization
While e-commerce has experienced incredible growth, this growth also led to a wide range of choices that cause consumer fatigue. Customers with thousands of options eventually choose nothing, unless these options are tailored to their exact preferences and searches.
AI-powered personalization has become the core of the modern shopper experience, covering increasingly more use cases like:
Personalized inventories for seamless navigation and product discovery
If you run a big e-commerce with thousands of products, chances are your customers will have a hard time finding what they want. ML algorithms can analyze your inventory and customer profile and only display the most relevant products for each client.
You can read more about how we helped an online retail store leverage personalized inventories using ML and data analysis in this article.
Dynamic pricing based on customer activity to incentivize sale
AI-powered dynamic pricing allows online stores to optimize their prices in real time based on various customer data points, including browsing patterns, purchase history, and price sensitivity.
For example, electronics e-commerce might adjust the price of their gadgets to offer a personalized discount to a customer who frequently browses their products but never buys anything.
Using chatbots as personal assistants for enhanced shopping experiences
Chatbots are increasingly becoming a must-have feature for modern online stores. By engineering chatbots to store data from previous conversations, purchases, and even demographic information, they can act as personal shopping assistants.
Using AI and ML, chatbots can ask questions about style preferences, make product suggestions, and improve their recommendations based on customer feedback.
CX building block #3: consistent omnichannel customer experience and support
Gone are the days when a good experience simply meant providing goods or services to the customer with a smile. The always-on customers of today interact with businesses through a variety of channels and expect the same level of consistency whether they browse a website, interact with your posts on social media, or submit a support ticket.
While most companies already use different channels for their marketing, sales, and operations, not all companies integrate these channels into a fluid customer experience.
In fact, according to Harvard Business Review Analytical Services only 16% of businesses have a holistic view of their customers, making omnichannel consistency a priority for customer experience digital transformation.
Starting tips to ensure consistency in the omnichannel experience
Omnichannel consistency allows customers to feel like they can interact with you anywhere without encountering friction, discrepancies, or knowledge gaps.
Here are a few starting tips on how you can begin integrating this approach into your digital transformation efforts.
Optimize the number of channels: while more channels might seem like more opportunities to connect with your customers, you need to consider which channels your customers value the most. Focus on making those touchpoints highly engaging and providing an integrated experience across those specific platforms.
Implement cross-platform user analytics: to build an omnichannel strategy you need to understand and track how your customers behave in different contexts. If your customer views a product on mobile, you can use this data to provide personalized recommendations once they visit your website, creating a seamless transition.
Adopt a design system for consistent UI/UX: you don’t want your customers to feel like they’re interacting with a different company when moving from your website to your mobile app. A design system reinforces the same button styles, font choices, and interaction patterns across platforms.
3 omnichannel customer support best practices
One of the biggest challenges of omnichannel customer support is having to balance different channel interfaces and functionality while keeping the same level of service quality.
Whether customers reach out to you by phone, email, chatbots, or even social media, you want to be able to resolve their issues quickly and efficiently.
Provide alternatives when response time takes too long
Slow response times are plaguing customer service and unfortunately, it can cost businesses a lot. Slow response times are considered worse by customers than not responding at all.
For example, someone might choose to contact customer support via phone. If their issue is going to take a long time to resolve, consider giving them the option to receive a response by email.
Alternatively, you can look into implementing self-service options. This allows customers to take matters into their own hands, avoid lengthy wait times, and escalate issues to a live agent only when needed.
Maintain a knowledge base to avoid asking for the same info twice
There is nothing more frustrating to a customer than being bounced between departments and platforms while having to repeat the same story.
A lot of information can be lost when the customer moves between channels, so it’s important to have a centralized knowledge base that is available to all customer service agents.
This ensures that every agent, whether they are on social media, live chat, email, or phone support, has consistent information and can quickly find the information they need.
Implement company-wide tools and protocols for customer service
To deliver exceptional omnichannel customer service, companies need an ecosystem of tools and protocols that span the business. This can range from central wikis and digital handbooks to an omnichannel contact-center platform with call recognition, chat, video chat, and email management, and a single system that integrates the platforms with each other.
Develop a comprehensive training program accessible to all support agents, regardless of the channel they specialize in, to ensure everyone has consistent information and follows the same support protocols.
Companies that are able to not only have a 360-degree view of their customer but turn this data into actionable insights have a significant competitive advantage.
By placing CX design at the heart of digital transformation, businesses can deliver seamless, personalized customer experiences across channels, technologies, and departments, ensuring a higher level of trust and loyalty in their services and products.
ETEAM recently partnered with Helpware to deliver not only custom software development but also top-tier BPO services. As a leading company in the field, Helpware offers a full range of services for companies looking to take their digital customer experience to the next level, including AI operations, back-office, and omnichannel customer support.
Together we aim to provide businesses with the full spectrum of technology, tools, and people for successful CX digital transformation!