“At least 40% of all businesses will die in the next 10 years, if they don’t figure out how to change their entire company to accommodate new technologies” states John Chambers, Executive Chairman of Cisco System.
The digital customer experience (CX) goes hand-in-hand with a company’s success. With so much competition from businesses worldwide at such high standards, consumer habits have now changed. Customers have higher expectations of a seamless customer journey, with the end goal of receiving their products or services, quickly and hassle-free. Therefore, it is critical for businesses to strive to deliver the optimal CX to gain a competitive advantage and avoid the risk of facing extinction.
What is digital transformation?
Digital transformation refers to the method in which businesses integrate new digital technology, leading to significant changes in a business’ operations and a smooth, consistent CX. Research has revealed that companies that implement digital transformation strategies are generating highly engaged customers who purchase 90% more frequently, spend 60% more per purchase, and have 3 times the annual value, compared to the average customer.1
Who is the new, digital customer and what do they want?
With technology advancing at an unprecedented rate, a new type of modern buyer has evolved, who is always connected, app-native and has high expectations of businesses to deliver what they want, almost instantaneously. Due to the extent of choice customers now have, given the amount of competition, they can afford to be picky and will prejudge a company based on the digital CX. Hence, businesses must be willing and prepared to transform their organisation digitally, in an attempt to gain and retain new and existing customers.
The first steps to implementing a digital transformation strategy
1. Cloud adoption
It is fundamental for companies to adopt flexible and agile IT systems, and to understand that implementing cloud technology is a vital element of your digital transformation strategy.
Mark Hill, Chief Information Officer (CIO) at the global recruitment firm, Nigel Frank International, echoes the importance of cloud adoption, “…cloud computing is the new normal and it’s becoming a case of evolve or die.”
Using the cloud enables organisations to be more dynamic, flexible and quicker, providing your business with the opportunity to trial new, low risk and economical projects, in an attempt to meet customer demands faster. What’s more, cloud applications enable you to form a customer database where you collate digital data about your customers. This can in turn assist your business in delivering an optimised and more personalised CX.
2. Personalised CX
The more relevant your products and services are to each individual customer, the more likely they will fulfil a purchase. With the modern buyer wanting to find what they want online, quickly and easily, companies are adapting, by storing customer information from contact details, to search and purchase history, in a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, used to provide targeted ads and emails, promoting the products they desire.
Amazon has taken this one step further by including an option of a ‘1-Click’ ordering system, which enables existing customers to have the optimal CX.2 This works by allowing customers to buy the products they want at a click of a button, and the items arriving at their door before they even have the chance to change their mind.
3. Omnichannel approach
A silo mentality in business is a thing of the past, yet many longstanding corporate organisations still suffer from its effect. In the current digital revolution, it is essential for businesses to blur the boundaries between technology, marketing, sales and operations, and to develop a seamless omnichannel approach to CX. Consumers are no longer exclusively using one channel, but are purchasing both in-store and online, as well as expecting customer support services to be available 24/7, via social channels. Therefore, it is vital for businesses to collate all customer interactions with them, to form a single digital profile, enabling customers to have the seamless CX they want, and now expect.
Existing technology is constantly improved with new, innovate equipment taking its place. Subsequently, digital transformation strategies will only become more advanced. While some businesses continue to resist adopting new technology, those organisations that embrace it, have the chance to flourish in the current business climate, through providing customers with the best possible CX. By adopting flexible and agile cloud computing and delivering a personalised, seamless CX across all channels, your organisation will make its first steps in implementing a digital transformation strategy, designed to successfully target the modern customer.
Want to learn more about the effects of digital transformation and AI on the marketing sector? Zoodikers managing director, Katie King, has recently authored a book “AI in Marketing soon to be published by Kogan Page, which includes the latest insights from industry experts in this field, alongside a business framework for success, and much more.