But what does this mean for you, as a business? How can you respond to these varied and evolving demands?
If there’s one overarching idea to be garnered from our research, ‘Chat, tap, talk: Eight key trends to transform your digital customer experience’, it’s that there’s no ‘one size fits all’ approach when trying to transform the digital customer experience. Every customer is different, so giving all customers an experience that meets their specific needs is extremely difficult.
In fact, we’ve identified three broad categories of customer behaviour: ‘visionary’, ‘utilitarian’ and ‘customer in crisis’. These can be used to replace traditional market segmentations (such as demographics) in today’s digital world. A single customer can display each of the three behaviours at different stages of their buying journey - and each of the categories brings different demands in regards to customer experience.
What does bring consumers together, however, is that most (81 per cent) say that large organisations should always offer different channels to meet their needs. And this makes perfect sense. Say you’re planning a holiday, for example. When booking, you might want video chat to talk through the complexities. Then, when you’re at the airport, you might just want to receive an SMS to tell you your gate number.
That’s why it’s so important for organisations to offer a range of contact options - and to integrate these options so that people can switch seamlessly between channels, depending on their needs. In other words, an omni-channel approach.
It’s heartening to see that this is exactly what many organisations are, in fact, doing already.
Between 2015 and 2017, the number of people who found it difficult to switch between one means of communication and another dropped from 58 to 51 per cent - a move in the right direction. Over that same period, the number of people who said that organisations are making better use of their data rose from 13 to 27 per cent.
Each element of an omni-channel approach is important, each bringing its own benefits to both consumers and organisations. And the fact that it’s beneficial to both the company and the customer, is an important aspect to remember. After all, you need to look after both, if you want to get ahead. That’s why it’s key to look at each channel independently, as well as how to bring it all together as a whole.
Download our white paper to further explore the technology trends set to impact customer experience expectations.