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Article CX Execution

How Omnichannel Creates New Competition for Your Customer Experience

As if there wasn’t enough competition for struggling industries like banking, retail and airlines, now their list of competitors just multiplied. OK, we’re not talking about direct competitors at the product or service level, but at the customer experience level.

The brick and mortal experiences are very distinct between industries. While there is common ground, the very physical nature of the in-store experience limits competitors to those who are offering similar products or services.

Omnichannel is Different

Once you start going omnichannel, things get a lot murkier. The amount of ‘real estate’ you’re talking about on a website is a fraction of what a physical location has — and even more so on a mobile device.

As a result, the big thing is that your customers have a lot more to compare your online and mobile experience to. It’s as simple as “if this company can provide ‘x’ on my mobile phone, why can (your company)’. Or ‘why is it so hard to get this done on (your company’s website) when it’s a piece of cake on company y’s site?”.

Expectations Multiply

Those are two generic examples but the main point is that there are core experiential elements to online, mobile (and even social) customer experiences. When customers repeatedly experience those things being done well by other companies (even if they’re outside your industry), it raises expectations and drives down customer satisfaction.

The challenge facing banks is a good example. Customers don’t care if other banks don’t do something — they care if any of the companies they deal with offer it. And that means big problems for banks -- not just in the branches but even more so on mobile, web and social media.

A Moving Target

It’s important to realize that, in this customer driven economy with heavy social connectivity, customer expectations are a moving target, and they’re not moving down — only upward. The fight for the customer experience victory puts your company in a battle with more than just your direct competitors — it’s about matching up and beating the omni channel experience leaders across industries.

Mar 4, 2014  

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It's impossible for companies to focus on the 'easy' market segments (ie. non millenials) and get comfortable with a less than competitive product or service offering. 

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