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Top CX Strategy Trends: Enhancing Customer Experience

By Ross Bark – July, 9, 2024

In today’s competitive and challenging landscape, providing exceptional customer experiences (CX) has become more crucial than ever. As technology advances, businesses have the opportunity to leverage customer data and interactions more effectively, enhancing the decision-making process that spans from researching and searching to buying.

Let’s explore the top CX strategy trends that are shaping the industry and driving customer loyalty and revenue growth.

1. Integrating Customer Data for Better Decision-Making

We’ve long recognised that seamless digital experiences lead to increased customer loyalty and revenue. The current trend is the enhanced ability to consolidate customer data into a comprehensive decision-making process. This holistic approach encompasses every aspect of the customer’s journey, including researching, searching, and buying. Here’s how:

  • Guided Selling Tools: These tools offer step-by-step evaluation processes, presenting products and information tailored to meet customers’ needs. By simplifying the decision-making process, guided selling tools can increase conversion rates by upwards of 50%. For example, John Lewis uses guided selling tools on their website to help customers find the right products, react to customer interaction and make changes recommendations accordingly.
  • AI-Powered Search and Merchandising: Utilising artificial intelligence in search and merchandising enables brands to provide personalised and relevant product recommendations. Mitre 10 NZ, for instance, leverages AI to enhance their search functionalities, making it easier for customers to find exactly what they’re looking for, thus improving satisfaction and sales.
  • Loyalty with Personalisation: Implementing rules-based offers allows brands to determine the optimal times to communicate with customers, delivering personalised messages and offers. Adore Beauty uses an integrated loyalty program to drive contextual, cross-channel experiences and is experiencing an 43% increase in active customers over the last 2 years.

2. Generative AI as an Enabler, Not a Strategy

While there’s a lot of buzz around Generative AI (Gen AI), it’s essential to view it as an enabler rather than a standalone business strategy. Gen AI can enhance various aspects of CX, from personalised marketing to customer support, but it should be integrated into a broader, well-defined strategy to be effective.

City Beach is utilising AI to improve its campaign automation and segmentation and to prioritise active customer segments to drive 1:1 personalisation. The impact: 48% increase in their win back rate from defecting customers.

3. Efficiency in a Challenging Economic Climate

In the current economic climate, marked by a push towards profitability, a tight labour market, and a slowing economy, businesses are striving to do more with less. Here’s how this trend is manifesting:

  • Enhanced Customer Choice and Discerning Buyers: Whether dealing with consumers or business buyers, the market is flooded with choices. This makes it challenging to differentiate purely on product and price. Therefore, the customer experience and the outcomes delivered are becoming increasingly vital. For example, Mitre 10 NZ’s focus on superior customer service and personalised experiences helps them stand out in a crowded market.
  • Efficiency Through Digitisation: Many brands are focusing on digitisation to enhance convenience and efficiency. After spending the last five years enhancing their digital capabilities, companies are now beginning to pivot back towards human-to-human interactions in sales and service. This balanced approach, combining digital efficiency with personal touch, is reminiscent of strategies from a decade ago but is now enhanced by modern technology.
  • Leveraging Partnerships and Marketplaces: Brands are looking beyond their own products and services, focusing on outcomes and growth through partnerships and marketplaces. Using platforms like SAP Commerce, companies can integrate various services and products, providing a comprehensive solution to their customers. Freedom, for instance, has integrated third-party products into their offerings, enhancing the overall customer experience.

Conclusion As we follow these trends, it’s clear that better utilisation of customer data complimented by AI applications, and a mix of digital and personal interactions helps brands enhance CX, that boosts repeat purchases and recurring customer revenue.