The Impact of Digital Transformation on Customer Experience
Modern technology has pushed the boundaries of digital experience into areas we’re still having trouble wrapping our heads around (ahem, talking about you, artificial intelligence). It’s normal and prudent for businesses to keep pace with these trends and adapt operations and technologies to take advantage of these advances.
Digital transformation, however, must address technological evolution and how it affects the customers organizations seek to attract. The ultimate point of digital transformation is to enhance both business practices and customer experience.
Equally considering digital transformation and customer experience requires a well-rounded look at your business goals, technology, and the customers that ultimately keep your business’s lights on.
Whatever new digital strategies you might have on the horizon, it’s important to consider how they affect customer journeys. This article seeks to define digital transformation, show you how to best analyze those changes against customer experience, and how to deftly synergize digital experience and customer experience across your organization.
What is digital transformation?
Digital transformation is the process of adapting business operations to the evolving technological landscape by making products and services available to customers from multiple channels and devices.
Because technology has changed the habits of the modern consumer, it’s crucial for businesses to follow suit and keep pace with those habit changes. Thus, digitally transforming how a business does business.
How is digital transformation driving customer experience?
Not long ago, connectivity was difficult. Whether that was communication, purchasing something, reaching thousands of customers at once, or anything in between, it wasn’t easy. That was before our society, as a whole, went through its own digital transformation when the internet hit the scene and with it, the Web.
The sprawling branch of technologies made possible by the internet completely transformed how human beings speak to each other, buy things, sell things, open digital storefronts, you name it. Customer experience was forever changed and influenced by a societal digital transformation, but now that we’re used to having anything at our fingertips, the finer points of digital transformation might not feel as extreme, but they impact customer experience nonetheless.
Customer experience and digital experience are bonded now. We hardly notice it because it’s been the status quo for a while. For instance, 73% of retail consumers shop from multiple digital channels. It’s the norm, and it should come as no surprise that how customers navigate a business’s digital experiences will influence how customers ultimately see that business.
Let’s explore how to use ongoing digital transformation to elevate customer experiences across the board.
How to leverage digital transformation for customer experience
Combining digital transformation with customer experience will look different per business, but there are a few tenets that ring universally true.
Establish a digital strategy
Digital transformation strategy demands that you take digital stock of three things before doing anything:
- Where are you now?
- Where do you want to go?
- How are you going to get there?
Rushing into a digital transformation for the sake of adopting the shiniest new technologies on the market is a surefire way to get in over your head. Sustainability is the name of the game in digital transformation, so strategizing needs to be a careful, deliberate process that matches what your business is able to handle, the technologies you’ll need to see it through, and how your customers might be affected.
Focus on an evolving customer journey
Companies may think they’re in control of their digital future, which, in a sense, is true. But, the long-term viability of digital transformation depends on keeping customers and growing your customer base.
Thus, a digital transformation needs to focus on how changes will influence the customer journey. Disruption is a popular term in the tech world, but customers like their comfort zones, so thinking about digital transformation without totally disrupting customer journeys is an important balancing act.
Get the right tech in place
When you’ve aligned your digital transformation strategies with customer experience, now comes the question of how you’re going to get there. There’s no shortage of “cutting-edge” technologies out there vying for your business’s attention, but your ability to feasibly support new digital solutions depends largely on technical infrastructure and internal personnel.
Meeting customer needs quicker means streamlining whatever tools you do use and making sure they work well together plays both to your advantage and your customers’. Open, composable technologies stacked atop a digital experience platform (DXP) are a great way to combine solutions to ensure that everything plays nicely together.
Use customer data to lean into personalization
Customer data needs to be at the center of any digital transformation effort that aims to improve the customer experience. In fact, some of the most effective digital transformations organizations go through are customer-data oriented.
Optimizing how your organization collects, stores, analyzes, and acts on customer data will help you personalize content because you’ll get a better data portrait of your customers to strategize for. Use customer data to bring them digital experiences that resonate with them and lead them smoothly to their goals.
Command omnichannel experiences
Digital transformation done well improves customer experiences wherever your customers are interacting with your brand. As the number of digital channels has only increased, it’s crucial to be able to deploy consistent content to every channel. Headless and hybrid solutions enable organizations to create content that can be published wherever you need to reach customers. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) got the idea right and harnessed headless publishing capabilities to push content to 1,800 signs across more than 400 stations across NYC.
Omnichannel digital experiences are the present and future of customer experience. When your customers are engaging from multiple channels, ensuring a smooth, consistent brand experience across those channels will reduce customer attrition and maintain a strong brand presence.
Start your digital transformation with a DXP
Walking away from this, it’s clear that the connection between digital transformation and customer experience is something modern businesses can’t afford to implement haphazardly or ignore. Because of our dependence on technology, digital transformation needs to be a holistic solution.
Acquia’s open, composable DXP is built to make digital transformation smooth for your organization and your customers alike. To learn more about how to use a DXP to your advantage and boost your digital transformation into something that will delight your customers, get in touch. We’d love to show you.