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Optimize your digital experience management strategy

Feb 09, 2022

Optimize your digital experience management strategy

Just having a digital presence in 2022 isn’t enough. Today’s customer journey covers a wider range of touchpoints than ever before and can constantly move back and forth between the physical and digital world. Customers now expect a robust digital experience that works—and works well.

The result must be a digital experience that is not only highly monitored and optimized, but also results in a potentially endless stream of data for brands to consider when doing so.

This is where digital experience management (XM) comes in.

With such a massive amount of data coming through, it’s more important than ever for brands to manage the digital experience for customers and optimize the collection and analysis of data to contribute to high-quality results. Here are three key best practices to consider in both establishing and optimizing your digital experience management.

Strategy #1: Maximize opportunities for conversion

Since the beginning of the pandemic, digital channels for brand engagement have significantly increased in popularity. A user-friendly digital customer experience can be the difference between a brand loyalist making a repeat purchase and a frustrated, lapsed customer turning to your competitor’s site. In fact, with the average abandonment rate at nearly 70%, e-commerce channels alone could be losing up to $3 billion a year.

To fully understand what makes users bail at digital touchpoints, companies need an integrated, multi-channel XM solution that measures non-purchaser behavior. At a minimum, an end-to-end user experience measurement platform should help you:

  • Address user issues with case management to earn back long-term trust: Closing the loop on customer feedback is key to developing trust and transitioning customers from one-time visitors to repeat loyalists. SMG’s case management workflows enable companies to clearly identify and effectively follow through on customer complaints and prevent repeat problems—using in-platform response capabilities across measurement channels.
  • See digital touchpoints through the eyes of the user with journey analysis: Only having one part of the puzzle isn’t enough. With analysis of user experience data linked to survey results, user experience stakeholders can visualize and resolve points of friction in the customer journey. Companies can quickly focus on those areas that truly matter to their customers and avoid chasing the wrong signals. 
  • Understand why customers aren’t converting: With a custom-designed abandonment survey, it’s easier to discern whether users were turned off by shipping costs, delivery times, clunky account creation processes, or unanticipated issues.

Strategy #2: Diversify and customize signal collection to improve data quality

Prior to the global health crisis, 73% of consumers used multiple channels during their shopping journey. While that customer data will surely change, digesting customer feedback for your in-store, website, and digital application teams will likely create siloed approaches—creating extra work for everyone involved and making it more difficult to track trends across touchpoints and throughout the customer journey.

Re-imagining brand-specific mobile apps

Whether it’s researching products before an in-person visit, making in-app purchases, or redeeming loyalty rewards, branded mobile applications have quickly become a primary touchpoint for consumer interactions for a variety of reasons. To ensure the app experience meets the expectations set by more established channels, it’s critical to build an innovation strategy that keeps the customer at the heart of every decision.

Businesses can take a more proactive approach to feedback on digital experience management by inviting users to in-app surveys using hyper-targeted invitation criteria (e.g., time in app, specific page visits, or a combination of factors). Whether it’s capturing post-transaction customer satisfaction levels or measuring NPS at strategic intervals, brands can use these dual methods to get answers to pressing questions, such as:

  • How are consumers leveraging the mobile app prior to, or in tandem with, in-store visits?
  • What are the top areas for improvement when it comes to functionality + UX?
  • What are the barriers or points of friction that hinder in-app purchase conversion rates?

Deliver hyper-personalized feedback engagements for more targeted customer insights

In addition to being completely customized to match your branding, surveys can be configured to include a wide variety of question types, input displays, and logic-based surveys that personalize the questions according to the user’s specific behaviors and experience types. Beyond the data provided through the survey, brands can also automatically collect metadata, including:

  • Transactional details (e.g., amount spent, time/day of visit, products purchased)
  • User data such as loyalty membership information or other data housed in CRM systems
  • Device metadata to further refine insights based on operating system, device type, + app version

Active, passive, and customizable feedback channels

A multi-source XM reporting platform, when paired with dedicated professional services, can give brands the tools they need to implement custom, comprehensive feedback collection methods that gather information on the customer experience across every touchpoint.

Get the best cross-channel insights with: 

  • Solicited feedback: Intuitive site-intercept surveys actively solicit consumers for feedback during various stages of the purchasing or booking process. You can decide which pages or specific behaviors trigger the survey, giving your teams the opportunity to measure discrete, isolated experiences. By configuring survey invitation criteria to capture feedback at critical points in the digital journey, you can surface more targeted insights and design a user experience optimized for conversion at each step in the purchase decision funnel.
  • Unsolicited feedback: An always-on feedback tab passively gives online shoppers the opportunity to express how they feel about your brand’s website, the products/services, and the overall user experience without a prompt. Maybe it’s a loyal, repeat customer mourning a discontinued product—or a first-time visitor hitting a roadblock while navigating the app. Positive or negative, unsolicited feedback can help answer the questions you hadn’t even thought to ask.
  • Custom-designed surveys: Self-service technology allows clients to create and trigger specialized surveys, separate from standard invitation methods. With intuitive DIY survey capabilities, your teams can edit questions on the fly or choose from a pre-approved question bank, build logic paths to prompt drill-down questions based on prior responses, and take an iterative approach to testing and assessing conversion tactics.

To dig deeper into purchaser and non-purchaser behaviors in real time, brands need an integrated XM platform. By incorporating multiple survey options for a quick turnaround on feedback, it’s that much easier to add depth to consumer data and improve how your brand attracts and retains customers in a competitive landscape.

Strategy #3: Uncover more insights by removing XM data silos

With siloed customer experience data, you won’t get the side-by-side comparison you need to see what’s driving a wedge between those touchpoints. Whether it’s an isolated issue or a persistent problem, if you’re not able to accurately track down the reasons for dissatisfaction, you won’t be able to fix it.

Additionally, shoppers who are highly satisfied with the digital experience have an in-store purchase conversion rate of 80%—nearly triple the rate of less-than-satisfied customers. By providing a frictionless online experience, brands can exponentially increase the chance of creating highly satisfied customers in-store, too.

To get a head start on bridging the gap between in-store and online satisfaction, brands can:

  • Discover what influences channel preferences: Are customers using your brand’s app to avoid the drive-thru before work? Do they shop online for large home furniture items, but desire in-store experiences for all the accent pieces? Cross-channel data details what drives shoppers to each channel during the customer purchase journey.
  • Identify common themes in cross-channel feedback: Did both online and in-store guests mention payment issues in their feedback? Multi-source text analytics can decipher common product mentions, recurring trends, and comment sentiment across touchpoints to identify emerging systemic issues—and triggered alerts can help you resolve problems as they arise.
  • Personalize the user experience by merging purchase data: Use what your brand already knows about customers to enhance their cross-channel experience. When you have the right data, you can do things like base rewards off favorite menu items, automatically suggest the fitness instructor they book most frequently, or add a personalized “Recommended for You” section to your brand’s homepage.

Customers won’t settle for a disjointed cross-channel experience—and neither should your teams. It’s important your XM utilizes a unified platform combining feedback data sourced from multiple channels to help your brand offer a seamless experience while also having the ability to track customer trends across every point of interaction.

Optimizing your digital experience management strategy for maximum ROI

By running an inefficient XM program, or at least one that’s not optimized, many brands are leaving money on the table. By focusing on ways to utilize digital XM to counteract digital attrition, diversify feedback signal channels, and remove data silos, brands can use the intelligence provided by systems they already have in pace to improve performance.

For more on this and other ways your digital experience management program can be optimized to deliver the maximum ROI, check out our best practice ebook, The ultimate guide to experience management ROI.