Retailer success — 4 ways to accelerate your CXM strategy
The retailer customer experience can be difficult to pull off. Here are several proven ways to do just that.
According to the International Administration in the US Department of Commerce, online sales grew by 44% over the last 2 years. But “smart” retailers are growing too. They’re just more digitally savvy than ever before.
That’s because “survival in today’s economic climate and competitive retail business requires more than just low prices and innovative products,” one study found. In order to compete with digital-first companies, retailers must offer irresistible experiences at “every point of contact and with every product or service that a customer engages with,” the study concluded.
Customer experience management (CXM) is the active ingredient needed to thrive in today’s digital retail market while still offering the tried-and-true combination of compelling products, prices, and locations.
The four pillars of CXM
Unfortunately, two-thirds of Adobe customers say they don’t have a clear CXM strategy. That finding is corroborated by a separate Capgemini study, which revealed only 30% of consumers believe today’s companies are “customer-centric” in their sales and marketing approach.
Many retail customers are rightfully overwhelmed. Since CXM is a relatively new, overarching, and tech-driven operation that touches a dozen different departments, retailers struggle with where to start. Many of them are unsure how to unify their data, create a central content repository, automate delivery across all customer touchpoints, and orchestrate their outreach at the right time and place — what we call the four pillars of CXM.
Adobe Professional Services attempts to simplify CXM and break it down into manageable pieces, programs, and actions. In our experience, those who do this enjoy a 60% higher lifetime customer value and 2–3 times higher revenue growth. But mastering these 4 pillars takes a good understanding of some best practices that will help set you up for true omnichannel success.
Four best practices for CXM success
- Adopt a data-driven mindset. Since data is the life force of any successful CXM program, it’s important to identify specific KPIs at every customer journey stage (both online and offline). Then build a single source of truth — or unified database — to make those insights available to all your touchpoint teams. For example, training in-store employees on search and online purchasing behavior is a great way to personalize in-store experiences.
- Scale and adapt personalization efforts. Once new privacy regulations begin in 2023, third-party cookies will be no more. In order to continue to appeal to customers with the right message on the right device at the right time, companies will need to invest heavily in first-party data strategies to feed into their unified datasets. As an extension of point number one, they’ll have to reinvent their data to thrive in the cookieless future.
- Improve content velocity. With the right data available to the right people, you’ll need to redesign content workflows between your creative and retail teams to move quickly from insight to action. This step includes a central content repository (or system of record), automated delivery of unified content across all customer touchpoints, and A/B testing. In other words, you’ll need to develop digital assets for every product color and SKU to scale your personalization efforts.
- Gain leadership alignment. Getting company-wide buy-in and leadership commitment to a strong CXM strategy is a top priority. Currently, many CXM practitioners still work in siloed departments and are unable to get other teams or touchpoints to participate. In that framework, CXM will never work as intended unless leaders communicate a customer-first strategy to all stakeholders in sales, marketing, customer support, IT, and senior leadership.
Lending a helping hand
To achieve higher lifetime values, less churn, better reputation, lower service costs, and better engagement, retailers must adopt a strong CXM strategy and ensure that stretches across their people, process, and technologies. Having helped hundreds of leading companies with their CXM efforts over the last decade, Adobe Professional Services understands how to unify customer data, awaken all touchpoints, and deliver irresistible customer experiences.