A New Perspective on Customer Experience: The Omnichannel Learning Curve

Digital Selfie Series
Posted by
Valerie-Ann Leary
LivePerson Contributor
08/08/2014 - 10:42

There’s a commonality among businesses that are truly making it big: they have mastered the omnichannel customer experience. Look at Amazon, Google, Facebook and Burberry. They’ve taken big strides to meet customers consistently across all channels—especially mobile. 

Unfortunately, a recent assessment conducted by LivePerson and  Retail TouchPoints found that only 22% of respondents said their service teams were truly omnichannel.

The setback: there’s a learning curve.

The Obstacles to Omnichannel: What’s The Hitch?

 

Picture this: You’re interested in a particular smart phone model. The website is your starting point, which leads you to a few product pages and reviews. Next, you ask a customer service agent a few questions via chat and provide your contact information. The agent is helpful, and offers a few other items that you like too.

Fast forward one week: Confused at online checkout, you dial the call center and give your name. The agent on the other end of the line has no idea who you are or what you want. The conversation you had with the chat agent hasn’t been documented for the phone agent to see, and any opportunity the agent may have had for cross-sell (let alone single sale) is long-gone. 

We’ve all been there. Situations like these are frustrating. Today’s digital first shopper can’t be confined within one channel throughout the customer journey. He or she expects a seamless transition from one channel to the next. A recent study of consumers by CFI Group and eBay found that 95% “frequently or occasionally shop a retailer's website and store.”

So, why aren’t more businesses giving customers the omnichannel experience they want?

LivePerson found that nearly 80% of survey respondents said their businesses are still operating in silos, and are therefore, not creating consistent experiences from channel to channel. Barriers between marketing, sales, and customer service prevent the successful and total integration of omnichannel practices.

LivePerson’s assessment also found that there are silos within departments. Customer service, in particular, seems to be a sore spot for omnichannel adoption. Not all customer service reps are using multiple channels as avenues of customer support.

The first step is realizing where your organization is missing the mark, and taking steps to come together as one unified, digital first crew.

 

Moving To Omnichannel — As One Consistent Unit

 

There are ways to integrate omnichannel, and break down internal silos.

The key is having one vision for a more meaningful customer experience, understood by the entire team. All employees need to be on the same page with the overall vision, mission, technology platforms, as well as his or her role in the customer journey.

From customer innovation expert, Michael Hinshaw (@MichaelHinshaw):

“By identifying what the customer experience is across an individual or series of journeys--and prioritizing importance to the customer and identifying pain along the way--you can start to connect up where below-the-line systems in different silos create barriers.”

Moving from traditional to omnichannel is a dramatic shift (for both tech and talent), and all roles, responsibilities, and processes will need to be mapped out accordingly. Leadership plays a critical role here.

One big-name company who successfully de-siloed its internal network: Snapfish by HP.

More than 90 million members around the world rely on Snapfish to print and store their photos. Using the LiveEngage platform, Snapfish customer service can track customer data and share the information company-wide. All team members have a unified understanding of what’s working, and what’s not, for their multi-screen customers.

Is your company truly omnichannel? Does your business need a makeover? Take LivePerson’s quiz and snap your own digital engagement selfie.

Interested in learning more on how businesses are keeping pace with digital innovators? Download LivePerson’s ebook, Digital Engagement Selfies: A New Perspective on Customer Experience, for a closer look at the the big picture (plus tips to ramp up your digital engagement strategies).

Join our webinar, Digital Engagement Through A New Lens: How To Keep Pace With Connected Customers, on August 13th to learn more. Lindsay Green, SVP of Extraco Bank, will show how this Texas-based bank, delivered a differentiated experience for its customers by integrating its SWARM Banking methodology into its digital channels, resulting in a 20% call deflection rate and a 90%-plus customer satisfaction score. Register today!

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