CMOs are recognizing that customer experience is the new marketing and are turning to Voice of the Customer analytics to help them gain insight into their customers. As CMOs prioritize the customer experience it’s important to understand that not all customer feedback is created equal.
One of the first things I tell anyone that asks me about collecting the voice of their customers is that how you engage matters - different approaches deliver different results. Therefore, it’s important to ensure the data you collect is aligned to your objectives.
Measuring and managing the customer experience, is not the same as optimizing it.
This was the premise of the webinar I hosted on How to Optimize the Customer Experience.
The Voice of the Customer engagement spectrum
I began the webinar with a review of the current Voice of the Customer methodologies and their challenges when it comes to site optimization. Today, marketers often collect the voice of their customers through either a passive persistent approach best known as a comment card or an active random approach best known as an intercept survey. Both approaches provide important insights to measure and manage the customer experience but they face challenges when it comes to ongoing actionable information for site optimization.
1. Website survey for strategic decisions
To measure and manage the experience on your website, you need a robust representative sample. By randomly inviting visitors when they arrive on your site to answer a survey at the end of their visit, you ensure a healthy volume of balanced views about the website experience. With this representative sample and robust collection, you can be confident when running statistical analysis, making strategic decisions and investing resources. The challenge optimization teams face with a random sample is that it doesn’t capture the granular information they need. What we often hear is, “Do you have more actionable information?” In an effort to accomplish this, we see companies turn to passive approaches such as comment cards.
2. Comment card for customer support
Marketers often place comment cards on their site in an attempt to get more granular feedback and discover opportunities for site optimization. However in reality, visitors see comment cards as a customer support channel meaning only a small fraction of vocal visitors leave feedback. As a result, less than 25% of comments are about the website experience and less than 10% are about the page where the comment was left. Instead comment cards with its low collection are better suited as a customer relationship tool that integrates with your CRM system. Therefore, comment cards are a great outlet for customers to vent their frustrations but a poor source of valuable insights to optimize the experience.
3. Recognition of extreme experiences for site optimization
What designers and optimization teams crave is an ongoing feed of comments from visitors who are having an experience worth commenting about. This specific feedback will come from visitors having either extreme positive or negative experiences. When asked, these visitors will give the kind of feedback that provides the opportunities for remediation or at the other end of the spectrum highlight the strongest aspects of the experience. Until recently, it was not possible to effectively engage with these visitors.
iperceptions Experience Optimization
Now, thanks to iperceptions Active Recognition Technology you can recognize and engage with visitors likely to have extreme experiences. People having very good or very bad experiences, will give you the information you need to optimize the customer experience.
The below graph demonstrates that iperceptions Experience Optimization, which is powered by our Active Recognition Technology, collects the right information for designers and the optimization teams.
In blue, we have the normal distribution of the active/random approach showing high collection and a normal distribution, essential for measuring and managing the customer experience. In red, we have the negatively skewed distribution of a comment card with low collection. In green, we have the results of iperceptions Experience Optimization solution which recognizes and engages visitors who are having extreme experiences. The innovation is in the results. For the first time we see an inverted bell curve with more collection from both ends of the scale. With the right information from the right visitors you can access the information you need to optimize the customer experience.