Today, customers pay attention to their experience while interacting with a company. Customer experience is your company's opportunity to create a lasting impression on your customers. Indeed, customers are likely to forget what they purchased a year ago but remember how they felt when they patronised a business.
Imagine walking into a store to get some products. You walk straight to the aisle where your product should be, but don’t seem to be able to find it. It takes you a few minutes finally to spot the item on another aisle, so you pick it up, purchase the product at the checkout and go home afterwards. Of course, you got the products you wanted but not without some fuss. Was that a great customer experience? The answer is obvious.
On the other hand, imagine again that you walked into the store and were greeted upon entering the store with a big smile, and you had sales associates to help you locate the products you wanted. In addition, every employee you met while shopping was warm and friendly. You'd have a rewarding customer experience and probably look forward to visiting the store again.
Today, customer experience is a major differentiator between those businesses that are succeeding and those that are failing. According to a Salesforce survey, 68% of market leaders say they're increasingly competing based on customer experience. This means that companies that don't focus on creating a positive experience may lose leads, prospects and even customers to competitors that offer a more memorable experience as the market is full of similar options.
Whether you're buying a dress or kitchenware online, you want the process to be simple. For most people, a customer experience is best described as a convenience. Convenience here implies finding the right items and getting recommendations in webshops. It means getting the best offers and discounts regarding products. It is easy to find things you need (such as topics, articles, content etc.) on portals.
Today, most successful companies didn't do anything new other than adding convenience to their offerings. For instance, Uber, Amazon, and Netflix are built primarily on convenience by providing a seamless 'anywhere', 'anyhow' and 'anytime' experience. Similarly, businesses looking to succeed must ensure that their customer experience includes convenience.
Interestingly, most customers don't think of a positive experience when they try to use a service or purchase a product but will instantly notice its absence if they're unsatisfied. This means that providing a flawless first impression and continuously improving long-lasting impressions is really important.
So how can your business offer superior convenience to deliver a positive experience for your customers? The answer lies in making use of a tailor-made experience portal.
An experience portal is a set of tools designed to provide customers with access to necessary information plus full access to details about their engagement with a vendor company. These portals allow for self-service and meet the needs of digitally savvy customers and partners at every step of their journey, and on any device or channel they use.
Fully known as Digital Experience Portals, these tools are designed to offer secure access that is only granted through login as they hold sensitive data such as account history, user's data, and payment information. The information exchange conducted between companies and customers and other related records of their activity forms the basis of a typical experience portal.
A Digital Experience Portal performs a range of functions, the most critical of which are:
Every Digital Experience Portal comprises the following:
1.A custom web portal
This is a website that has been developed as a front-end surface and built using easily customisable and automatically interchangeable sections. Contrary to what you might think, a web portal isn't the same as a conventional website as its primary purpose isn't to drive traffic or attract more users. A web portal is designed for specific users and requires login information, unlike regular websites. With a custom web portal, your customers will get personalised access based on assumed or assigned user roles.
2. Customer Experience Management (CEM)
A central application is used for improving an organisation's interactions with its customers across all channels and touchpoints in the customer journey. It helps to plan how your company will initiate or react to engagement at different points in the customer journey. The overall goal of the CEM app is to enable you to meet or exceed customer expectations and thereby increase customer satisfaction and loyalty.
3. Enterprise Content Management (ECM)
This is an application that focuses on maintaining the internal and external information management ecosystem by capturing, storing, and managing structured and unstructured data and content. Many businesses rely on an ECM app to decrease dependence on paper, streamline business processes, drive better customer service, increase productivity, and reduce organisational risk. An ECM solution can handle both structured data (such as databases and code repositories) and unstructured data (like office documents, PDFs and emails.)
4. Content Management System (CMS)
This is a tool for managing and deploying website content. A template-based structure allows automated changes to be made to the website, to provide the best experience based on user preferences. The content might include blog posts, articles, graphics and even videos. Best of all, you don't need to have any background in tech, as you can create, organise, and publish content without HTML knowledge. A CMS app usually comes with various features, including publishing tools, themes and templates, analytics, SEO tools, extensions etc.
5. Customer Relations Management (CRM)
This is a tool used for managing interactions with customers and potential customers. It provides a streamlined map of all user interactions with the Experience Portal, plus information on the next steps. To support your goals, most CRMs include contact management tools, automated data capture, content repository, reporting etc. In addition, CRMs typically work closely with CMS as combining them provides more insights rather than just picking one.
6. E-Commerce Platform
This is a way to enable users to provide feedback on their purchase results and the general experience they had, while continuing to utilise the features and functions of the Experience Portal. This can help provide actionable insights into what your business is getting right and what it needs to improve on.
There's so much more than meets the eye when it comes to providing a great experience for customers. It is important to observe that a Digital Experience Portal isn't an IT-driven initiative but a customer-driven initiative. It enables you to connect all the digital touchpoints through which customers reach you into a more organised ecosystem. When you're looking to build personalised user experiences and create comprehensive strategies, a Digital Experience Portal is a solution you need. If you're considering building your experience portal or would like someone to give you a hand, MNDWRK is glad to help.