April 24, 2020 | Ben Smith

Feedback Spikes in March and April—What Does it Mean for CX Right Now?

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With people confined to their homes, and most stores and branches closed, customers are relying on digital channels at historic levels. And when digital fails, they head to contact centers for help.

Listening and supporting your customers on these channels right now is paramount—and a huge challenge. Needs have changed, and often intensified. Barriers to task accomplishment have shifted and grown with traffic.

The good news? Customers are eager to talk, share opinions, and respond to questions. As highlighted in our Adapt and Respond webinar on April 14, the COVID-19 situation is having a dramatic impact on customer feedback:

  • The number of Predictive Experience digital survey responses jumped 29% in March as compared to February. And the responses so far for April show an even greater increase.

This is a unique time to listen to customer voices. They want to tell you how to make them happy and improve experiences. They want to tell you how to keep their business.

Your Customers Want to Talk—Give them Every Opportunity

Most companies survey only a small portion of digital customers. But right now, customers are more eager than ever to share their experiences and opinions about your site, your app, and your business. For instance:

  • Many banking customers are new to digital. They need help with self-serve tools like depositing checks, transferring funds, or just managing their accounts. Know when and where those problems occur—and for what segments.
  • Retail shoppers accustomed to stores with physical access to products and assistants now expect similar experiences online. Listen for and use those challenges and disappointments to connect, set expectations, and guide.
  • Service-based companies are trying to transfer those customer interactions to digital or video. Being open to customer struggles will help you tune your offerings and maybe discover an innovative approach.

Of course, digital isn’t the only channel experiencing increased traffic. When customers can’t complete a digital task they turn to contact centers. Our Verint Experience Index retail report from February found that 47% of customers who reached out to a brand through email, phone, or chat did so because they couldn’t complete their task in digital.

Current evidence suggests that number is higher now. The rise in digital engagement and first-time self-serve customers means the number of failures is also rising, leaving contact centers to cope with more frustrated customers. Leveraging speech and text analytics will yield important findings for the entire organization.  

With an expansive listening strategy, covering more visitors at more times at critical points in the journey, you’ll:

  • Uncover insights by letting customers speak with you directly about whatever is on their minds right now
  • Surface new questions the moment they come up for customers as they interact with your digital channels
  • Prove your commitment to better customer experience by listening and acting in real time and being adaptable amid uncertain situations

Remember that whatever you’re collecting—survey input, opt-in feedback, speech and text analytics, behavioral data—becomes vastly more powerful when you bring it together. Data points read in isolation are only giving you part of the story, a fraction of the big picture. Combining data provides sharpened “in this moment” insight, helping you make faster and better decisions for your customers and your business.

Get More Experience Management Guidance

Remember that this surge in feedback is about more than increased site visits. It’s also increased scrutiny and higher expectations.

You can improve your ability to meet those expectations by watching our CX Transformation Takes a (Cross-Functional) Village webinar on Thursday, April 30, 2:00 pm ET, hosted by Forrester analyst Faith Adams. She’ll share why experience management must span across the enterprise and how those leading the charge for CX transformation can start to make it happen with best practices for the new realities of COVID-19 and the long run.

How can we help your team understand and address customer issues? Our Experience Management solutions are helping clients in every industry:

  • Identify web page and digital tool enhancement opportunities
  • Monitor reactions to events, site upgrades, communication effectiveness, etc.
  • Track issues and close the loop with groups or individual customers
  • Analyze and segment feedback based on devices, demographics, geographies, and other categories

Reach out to us to start a discussion about your current challenges.

Ben Smith, GM of Verint’s Experience Management business unit, has 20+ years experience helping leading organizations gain a deeper understanding of their customers and execute on their CX initiatives.

About the Author

Ben Smith has 20+ years experience helping leading organizations gain a deeper understanding of their customers and execute on their CX initiatives.

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