Mobile Trails in Customer Experience Integration

November 10, 2011

econsultancy-touch-points-integration.jpgCompanies are least likely to integrate mobile touch points into the overall customer experience, according to [download page] a report released in November 2011 by Econsultancy in association with Foviance. Data from the “Multichannel Customer Experience Report” indicates that offline touch points such as retail outlets (26%), direct marketing (17%) and events (14%) are more likely to be very integrated into the overall customer experience than mobile apps (10%) and SMS / MMS (9%). Meanwhile, among the global companies surveyed, website (32%), telephone support / sales (29%) and retail outlets (26%) are the touch points most likely to be very integrated into the overall customer experience, far ahead of social media presence (16%). Supply-side respondents findings tell a similar story, though for most touch points there is more skepticism about the extent to which they are typically integrated.

This may not be particularly detrimental to companies, though. In July 2011, a report from the e-tailing group and MyBuys suggested that personalization factors beat mobile factors for customer ideal: a higher percentage of cross-channel customers ranked several personalization factors higher than any mobile/social factors as being among the two most important factors in their shopping experience. For example, a convenience factor of using online store locators (41%) and a personalization factor of product suggestions based on past behavior (40%) were both ranked higher than the ability to purchase via a mobile phone with a shopping experience that renders well on the device (26%).

People More Important Than Technology

When asked to indicate the 3 attributes they regard as being most important within an organization for delivering a positive customer experience, 46% of companies responding to the November Econsultancy survey cited commitment to customer experience from the top of the organization as a top attribute, making it by far the most popular. The second most-cited attribute also relates to people rather than technology or processes: 35% said having a motivated and empowered staff is key to a positive experience. This was closely followed by enabling customers to interact seamlessly across channels, cited by 33% of companies. For supply-side respondents, the top 3 most-important requirements remained the same, although more agency respondents ranked seamless interaction across channels as a top attribute than having a motivated and empowered staff.

Companies Challenged by Data and Processes

econsultancy-customer-experience-attributes.jpgAccording to the report, companies are most proficient at the attributes they see as being most important: 58% say they are either excellent (21%) or good (37%) in terms of their commitment to customer experience from the top of the organization. Roughly half of company respondents also rate themselves highly for customer service efficiency. By contrast, a significant amount rate themselves poorly in attributes such as a single or joined-up customer database (53%), visibility of customer behavior across channels (51%), and joined-up internal systems and process (48%).

Complexity Biggest Barrier to Improvement

When asked to indicate the 3 biggest obstacles to improving multichannel customer experience, 40% of companies pointed to the complexity of customer experience, representing a 5% increase from 38% in 2010 and overtaking organization structure (34% compared to 41% in 2010) as the top barrier. Meanwhile, lack of strategy (39%) is regarded this year again by agencies as the most significant issue preventing their clients from enabling an improved customer experience.

About the Data: The Econsultancy report is based on a survey of more than 650 global respondents to an online survey carried out in June and July 2011. Respondents included both client-side (in-house) and supply-side respondents (i.e. those working for agencies, consultancies or technology companies with an interest in customer experience).

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