Earlier, businesses used to rely on their products’ quality and the word of mouth marketing to gain new customers and retain the old ones. But today, things are different. The digital age has changed the ways in which customers interact with a product. They have become more complex and diverse than ever due to a fast-paced, highly saturated market that empowers customers to demand more than just an economical, high-quality product. Companies need to work on their customer experience to win the battle in the competitive marketplace. CX design can help companies to create a competitive advantage.
It might be surprising for you to know that according to a study, 30% of brands offering digital experiences witness improvements in customer lifetime value. These ever-evolving customer expectations and demands highlight the importance of (CX) customer experience design for businesses. But before learning more about that, let’s understand what exactly CX (customer experience) is?
What Is CX?
If you’re wondering what does CX stand for or what is cx, it refers to Customer Experience. CX is how a brand or business engages with its customers at every touch point of their buying journey. This journey involves customer interaction with your brand, from marketing to sales to customer services and everything in between.
CX is not just about actions your customers take. It’s also about how they feel while interacting with your brand. At every touchpoint, there is scope for you to improve or destroy how your customers feel about you. So you have some important decisions to make at each touchpoint. Those decisions then influence how successful your brand will be as a result.
A “good” Customer experience design means seamless and enjoyable exchanges from beginning to end. You can break CX into three parts: the single interaction, the customer journey, and the lifetime relationship.
1. Single Interaction
The single-interaction experience means the users experience completing a single task. This level of CX defines users’ short-term interaction with a particular product or service. Most people associate this aspect of CX with UX or UI design.
Some examples of single-interaction experiences are:
- Ordering groceries through a store’s online application
- Cashing a check at an ATM
- Subscribing or signing up for a newsletter online.
Single interactions are touchpoints or isolated events that become a small part of the customer experience.
2. Customer Journey
Customer journeys have a slightly broader scope than single-interaction experiences. The reason is that they deal with the series of exchanges or interactions that take place between the customers and the brand. It involves drafting a customer journey map that makes it easy to track each customer interaction.
Moreover, a customer journey map includes multiple modes of interaction across various channels and devices. For example, suppose you’re to order a new credit card. Your customer journey may be something like logging on to your bank’s mobile app to get assistance in requesting a new card. Next, they connect you with a customer service representative through a call to complete your request. A few days later, you receive the card and must use the ATM to activate it.
So you get the picture now. Though you accomplished the goal of getting a new credit card, you had to interact with the company multiple times at multiple touch points through different channels. That is what a customer journey map looks like.
3. Lifetime Relationship
This aspect of CX has the most comprehensive scope among the three. A lifetime relationship takes every interaction and touchpoint between the customer and the company into consideration throughout their relationship. Unlike the single interaction and customer journey, the lifetime relationship doesn’t focus on one specific goal. Instead, it focuses on all the interactions between the customer and the company.
Here, the quality of all of these interactions determines what perception and opinion the customers have of your brand as a whole. The lifetime relationship between both parties can include:
- Any advertisements the customers may have seen.
- Their experience while researching, buying, or using a brand’s products.
- What was it like to contact support services or obtain repairs?
- Receiving messages or notifications from the company.
- What was it like to terminate a subscription or service?
Why Does CX Matter?
People are willing to connect with their favorite brands when it comes to Modern branding and CX design. Today, you’ll find competing brands offering pretty much the same product or service. And you might also notice that their most important differentiator is the customer experience design they offer to their customers. Hence, to compete in the modern business ecosystem, you need to commit to crafting a customer experience design that your customers easily resonate with throughout their journey. For that, you need to prepare a customer experience strategy (CX strategy) first.
A well-thought-out CX strategy will result in:
- Continuously growing customer loyalty and trust
- A significant boost in customer satisfaction
- A decent improvement in word-of-mouth marketing.
What Do CX Designers Do?
The work of a CX designer primarily is to focus on enhancing a customer’s experience across all interactions with a brand. They’re responsible for solving a range of problems. Moreover, they analyze and understand the consumers’ behavior, actions, and what affects their decision-making. In a sense, CX designers are the customers’ most prominent advocates. They work to identify customers’ issues, confusion, and frustrations. Furthermore, they build teams and projects to alleviate them.
Unlike UX/UI design, CX designers address any and all customer issues while interacting with a brand. Due to the requirement of a wide range of problem-solving skills, CX designers often have roots in advertising, marketing, management, tech, psychology, sales, and most importantly, communications. Some of the skills they require in the field include data collection, research, user testing, and presentation capability.
Their success is usually measured through critical metrics like customer engagement and conversion rates. CX designers are responsible for creating workflows, storyboards, journeys, and empathy maps. Also, CX designers create various personas and come up with distinct customer scenarios. The aim is to create an effective customer experience strategy that can be easily implemented.
CX vs UX
Often people confuse CX with UX. CX vs UX is often used interchangeably, which is wrong. Although both these terms come under the same umbrella and possess various similarities, they’re not the same.
The main difference between User Experience and Customer Experience is that the former focuses on the end user, the person using the product or service. On the other hand, CX focuses on the customer, be it any type. Often, customers use a product or service but may purchase it on someone else’s behalf. Even then, they count as potential customers.
One of the major goals of Customer Experience design is to maximize conversions and boost sales. User Experience, on the other hand, focuses on recovering feedback from the users who might not be paying customers.
Today, Customer Experience design is rifer in industries like hospitality and retail as there are more interactions between customers and brand representatives.
Good digital UX provides a customer with the ability to:
- Find the information they’re looking for on a website or application quickly and easily.
- Complete the desired task with ease.
- Search Web pages quickly and effectively.
A good customer experience strategy enables a customer to:
- Have a pleasant, professional, helpful interaction with the brand
- Feel generally optimistic about the overall experience with that brand and its other associated things.
How Can Businesses Benefit from CX?
Now that you know what Customer Experience design is and does it matter, here’s how businesses can benefit from it.
1. Increase Loyalty and Retention
CX design helps you (as a brand) establish a sense of trust and loyalty among their customers. They feel valued, seeing you inventing time to take note of their preferences, likes, and dislikes. As a result, this increases the retention rate of existing customers in the long run.
2. Increase Customer Conversions
Understanding that an existing, satisfied customer is more likely to buy than a new prospect is necessary. Hence, creating a CX with scope for feedback and product offerings is best. This will definitely boost your conversion rate. But, your primary focus should not be the revenue. It should be to build better relationships. Keep providing value, reaching out, and interacting with the prospects to convert them into long-term customers.
3. Enjoy Positive Reviews
Not every person is inclined to leave a negative review about you. If they have a great time using your product or are satisfied with your services, they are prone to leave good reviews across various channels. These reviews usually act as social proof for your brand. And this is where CX is helpful.
4. Boost Your Revenue
As digital technologies advance, niches and industries become more saturated with competitors, offering customers superior Customer Experience designs. Hence, CX becomes a defining differentiator between you and your competitors. As a result, this may direct you toward a higher market share.
5. Improved Crisis Management
When customers trust a brand, they’re more likely to reach out to you directly for issues and complaints. This gives you a chance to manage and improve your services. Moreover, you also get to manage your brand reputation without public humiliation.
After learning about CX in-depth, you probably understood the importance of providing exceptional customer experiences. Customer experience design is practically ruling over branding today. Now that you know how it can benefit the business in the long run, wait no more! Start working on your customer experience design with a CX team. You can either hire an internal CX team or outsource a skilled CX designer. It’s best to consider your resources, timeline, and customer experience strategy best practices before making this decision.