Bah, humbug! OK, maybe it’s the scrooge in me, but I know this time of year’s shopping brings as much frustration and confusion as it does glad tidings and good cheer. The retail customer experience can dampen the mood of even the most enthusiastic person.
Let’s face it, holiday shopping is high pressure stuff. Finding just the right gift brings many variables into play such as endless online searches, stock and availability, website checkout & payment, shipping, and more. Shoppers’ experience at crunch time can result in permanent damage to brand loyalty and a significant hit to customer lifetime value. It amazes me that so many retailers have not bought in to the idea of customer experience analytics.
As a reminder, when I say customer experience analytics I’m not talking about surveys alone – I’m talking the ability to generate critical insights from ALL customer communication channels. Retailers were early leaders in understanding and improving the customer experience. They invested heavily in providing diverse ways for customers to communicate with them, yet many still believe that solicited feedback in the form of surveys constitutes the “Voice of the Customer.”
This holiday season online shoppers will be volunteering terrabytes of qualitative data about their retail experience via calls, chats, SMS, email, in-app channels, social media, product reviews, and more. Many retailers still don’t realize that all these interactions, regardless of technology platform or data format, can be aggregated, normalized, classified and analyzed together, in one unified view.
This omnichannel approach yields essential insights about the root causes of customer friction points which can be used to mitigate issues on a near real time basis, and to avoid repeat problems next holiday season.
Want to know how important the holiday period is to online retailers? November-December revenue from online sales is expected to climb to $123 billion in 2018. That’s a whopping 35% increase from $91 billion just two years ago.
I can’t imagine any CX-minded retail executive not wanting to uncover and resolve every single friction point in the buyer/customer journey. Customers have so many options now that one poor experience can alter future spending and have an exponentially compounding effect with social media posts. Poor customer reviews are the bad gift that keeps on giving. Prevent them by giving your customers the gift of understanding and resolving friction points in their holiday shopping experience.
At Topbox, we’re providing CX analytics to some of the world’s top retail brands. As an agnostic aggregator, we’re able to ingest and normalize data from any call recording, chat, email, SMS, survey, in-app communication, or social media platform. Our technology does all the heavy lifting that has prevented companies from attempting to pull this data together in-house for the elusive “unified view” of customer experience.
With so much on the line, companies simply cannot afford to kick the can down the road on an investment in CX analytics. When retailers come up for air in January, we look forward to hearing the success stories of retailers with mature, omnichannel CX programs, and helping the others prepare for Holiday season 2019. Let us know if you’d like to learn more. Happy Thanksgiving from Topbox!