Not only does this breach the gap of the screen, but also making at-home shopping entertaining, not a chore. Creating unique experiences that deliver on being novel as well as useful, targets the next generation of e-commerce shoppers in a way that speaks to them in a way that they understand, and more importantly love.
Shopping shouldn’t be a chore. It should be an enjoyable experience where a customer feels valued and pleased with their purchase. And that means adding an element of fun.
What this all means is that no matter the company, no matter the method—tech, human customer service, or creativity—the consumer and their needs have to be at the center of the experience.
Not only does this mean that a digital experience should be as, if not more, effective and engaging than an in-house one, it means that the person should be at the forefront of everything a business does. Not hitting the mark and connecting with your clients? Then you need to rethink your engagement strategy.
It may seem obvious stating that first impressions matter (and second and third), but getting the customer experience wrong is more common than we might think—from poor first impressions to pain points and minor niggles that just make shopping all that less enjoyable.
No shopping would be complete without it. Customer service is your brand’s make-it-or-break-it, and this no longer just means “service with a smile.” Instead, customer service is all about creating that unforgettable experience for your client when they engage with your brand or store—online or offline.
Doing things a little differently
Customer needs and expectations in 2021
The latest research shows that consumers believe brands should expand their customer engagement methods in response to COVID. What this also indicates is that, at the moment, brands aren’t going far enough to genuinely connect with their customers, and that could prove a problem from here on in if consumer needs and brand strategy diverge.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, customers have been expecting more clarity and interaction with the brands they use and want to use. From knowing when stores are opening (or not) to how to buy their products to returns and exchanges—it’s all down to good communication and engagement.
Shopping isn’t just a one-sided experience where the brand places an advert and customers arrive. Those days are long gone.
In the last year, tech investment has increased by 35%, while almost half of executives believe that COVID forced them to rethink their consumer experience, indicating that big changes in the world of retail are only beginning.
So, what does the new customer experience look like? Let’s break it down a little further. Here are the 4 leading trends that our research says customers want today:
Novelty is a vital characteristic in the modern e-commerce experience.
And the research backs this up.
An unforgettable personalized experience
So what could this novelty experience look like in practice?
For brands, it means following the four major trends today (as defined by CRMbuyer):
An unforgettable personalized experience
It’s human-focused, and 96% of C-level executives agree. During the early months of the global pandemic, Deloitte surveyed a number of participants and the results overwhelmingly showed that they wanted a more human experience when it came to shopping online.
So, what does an unforgettable experience look like?
of consumers would stop doing business with a brand after just one poor experience.
According to the Economist
believe that expanding customer engagement is the key to success, and especially so following the regulations surrounding coronavirus.
Consumers are increasingly expecting brands to interact with them at every step of the purchase journey, and this means engaging in a meaningful way.
Retail in 2021 is a conversation
Shopping it’s an experience
AR is one of the technologies being used to bring that vital connection to customers with Gartner estimating that over 100 million worldwide will experience AR shopping this year. It boosts connectivity, creativity, and consumer engagement, leading to a seamless retailtainment experience.
Retailtainment or retail entertainment
is all about turning shopping into an experience, not a simple pop-it-in-your-basket transaction. The consumer should feel engaged at every stage of the purchase process, and feel valued as a brand customer.
Capitalizing on the FOMO (fear of missing out) trend, and especially now, when consumers are spending more time away from friends, family and social experiences, transforming shopping into an experience is more important than ever. Not only does this entertain the consumer, it builds a relationship with them, which leaves them more likely to come back time and time again.
of consumers believe that brands need to work harder to connect with them and find new ways to get their products and services out there.
According to DMEXCO Europe's leading tech and marketing event
Voice commerce. First, there was Siri and Alexa, now voice commands are taking over in a big way. From being a fun tool to try out to a useful shopping assistant, voice commerce is the latest novelty to hit the market.
Personalization and changing customer journeys. Nowadays, with the world-changing faster than ever, it can be difficult to keep up with your clients. But it could not be more important. Staying on the pulse with your customers is essential in 2021.
Omnichannel shopping. In 2021, shopping doesn’t have to be done on one defined website, instead, it can happen anywhere and everywhere. From social media to your phone, etc. getting access to the products and services you need shouldn’t be difficult.
Contactless customer experience. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, more brands are focusing on contactless services. Appealing to those who want to protect themselves from the virus and those who enjoy a little distance, going contactless is making shopping safer than ever before.
Shopping isn’t just a transaction anymore, it’s an experience. Your customers want you to reach out to them, to connect, and find new ways to interact that grip their attention. Whether that means a seamless communication strategy, a smart AI-powered chatbot that answers all questions, or an unforgettable AR online shopping experience, it’s up to the individual company to decide which strategy will work for their audience.
of customers want companies to offer new ways to get existing products or services