The Rise of CX
This is part two of a blog series “CX vs UX: The New Battleground” if you have not yet read part 1 here is a link to it.
As a UX designer I’m used to my field’s terminology changing every few years. These changes help companies stay one step ahead while also differentiating from one another, so it wasn’t surprising when a new term began growing in popularity and prominence within my field. That term was “Customer Experience” or CX.
I initially thought this was just another term for UX design. I can now admit that was just me being cynical. There are actually a number of key differences between CX and UX. These difference can begin to explain why CX has become the new essential battleground for all medium to enterprise level businesses and one of the most desirable skill sets to have in the industry.
The main difference is scope. CX design incorporates UX design but goes much further. A UX designer considers the website you have landed on and focuses on elements like:
- How should it appear aesthetically?
- What colours should be used?
- Where should buttons be placed?
- How should elements be labelled and highlighted?
- How efficient and painless is your journey from point A to point B?
- And most importantly: could it be done better?
The CX designer on the other hand has to think about that journey, along with the customer’s journey before and after that. The CX designer’s journey started days before you hit the website and continued weeks after your target was achieved or item was delivered. The CX designer’s considerations would include:
- How did the customer find the website – what search terms were used?
- Where did the website appear in the search results?
- Was the customer able to find everything they needed?
- Did they get all the size and colour options they required?
- Could they see accurate stock levels or have options to click and collect?
- If the item wasn’t in stock how was this conveyed and were they given alternatives?
- Once they completed their purchase what was in the confirmation email?
- How do we avoid basket abandonment?
- How efficient was the purchasing journey?
- How was the delivery and the packaging of the item?
- Could the customer track their delivery and was the delivery estimate accurate?
- If the delivery was delayed how was this conveyed?
- And much, much more….
CX designers have to think of the entire customer lifecycle and it is that experience which customers now look for and expect and businesses hope to provide. Companies like Apple and Amazon have been doing this for years. Amazon’s customer service department is almost second to none. It is quick, helpful and things are almost always dealt with instantly, fairly and in a way that leaves the customer happy.
I can offer up my own anecdotal experience as a case in point. I placed an order for some shot glasses from Amazon. I ordered 2 packs of 12 (…I know I might have a problem…) but only 6 turned up. I contacted them on their web form and almost instantly was having a phone call with a representative who knew me, knew my order history and instantly said they would send out the missing order for no additional cost with free next day (Sunday) delivery.
Sure enough the shot glasses turned up the next day, but again it was only 6 glasses, not a pack of 12 as I had ordered. I contacted them again and this time spoke to someone who knew all my details as well as my previous conversation history. He apologised and said they would refund the initial cost itself, so I ended up getting the shot glasses for free!
If you were wondering what the point of this story was, it is the story itself. I was so pleased from a potentially unpleasant situation that I went on to tell a number of people about it and that is exactly the customer experience all companies should aspire to.
In a recent Forrester survey, it was discovered that one happy customer is equal to nine positive referrals. One unhappy customer, on the other hand, is equivalent to 16 anti-referrals, or a 78% higher swing to the negative. We remember and warn others of bad experiences much more readily than we do good experiences. With these sorts of numbers playing out across tens of thousands of customer experiences and interactions you can understand how these sorts of minor and easily fixable situations can be enormously impactful on a company’s profit and loss margins.
One of my favourite statistics on this subject comes from the Design Management Institute and is on the importance of UX/CX design for the S&P top 500 shares in America. They discovered that by comparing companies who had a CX focus to those who did not across a 10 year period, those with a CX focus out performed those without at an average of a 228% increase in share price.
These are little mom and pop stores you might have heard of like Apple, Coca Cola, Nike and Disney…. It quite literally pays the big bucks to put your customers first and foremost! In part three of my blog, “CX vs UX: The New Battleground” I’ll discuss in detail the importance of CX in the Salesforce ecosystem and how makepositive utilises its own UX/CX Design team in all aspects of its project lifecycles. Thank you for reading!