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Customer experience trends to explore in 2022

2nd Dec 2021
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What comes to mind when you see the words “customer experience trends”? Depending on your industry or the marketing strategies that work for your unique cohort of customers, it is likely that you will have different thoughts compared to your peers. One thing we can all agree on is that CX has become one of the biggest factors in helping a brand stand apart from the competition.

These days, earning a customers’ loyalty (and a share of their wallet) has less to do with the products or services you provide and more to do with the experience you are able to offer them throughout the buying process and beyond.

With such a bright spotlight on CX for 2022, what are the key areas you should focus on over the coming year? We surveyed founders, marketing leaders, and eCommerce experts to summarize the top six trends they are prioritising in 2022.  

1. Personalization as a defining factor

Personalization is not a “nice to have” - it is rapidly becoming the norm and consumers expect higher degrees of personalisation and relevance in every brand or retailer interaction they have. It has been proven that businesses that have implemented personalization in their customer buying journeys have seen revenues increase by up to 15%.

One of the best examples of “personalization-done-properly” is Manchester-based pet retailer yappy.com, who personalize every part of the customer experience to feature your pet, from product images, to web banners, emails, website navigation, campaign imagery and more! 

When supported by powerful marketing automation tech, personalization can be the single most impactful CX improvement that a business can make to help revenue growth. Start by looking at the data you hold on your customers. If you don’t have enough meaningful data to communicate with relevance - then start asking questions. Consumers are often willing to share information in return for an incentive or as part of a gamified experience.

2. Chatbots to aid customer service

Chatbots have revolutionized the way businesses interact with their customers over the past couple of years, with adoption rates averaging 40% since the start of the pandemic. Offloading a proportion of your customer services operations to AI-powered chatbots can help businesses deliver a better, round-the-clock customer service experience, whilst significantly reducing operational costs.

Along with this, investing in chatbots helps brands to improve the self-service experience, delivering the convenience and fast problem solving that customers crave increasingly. The result? Faster decision-making, higher brand indexing and an improved NPS.

3. Predictive analytics for empowered decision-making

While traditional data-collection methods like surveys will continue to help businesses to gauge and understand customer preferences, they don’t rise to meet the varying data demands of businesses today - plus, collecting this type of data requires a degree of attention and incentive (see point 1). 

Predictive analytics help brands and retailers to quickly and accurately capture unbiased data about customer interactions to predict their future behaviour like - what is this user interested in? What is the next best channel to communicate with? What message will help this user to convert? 

Taking advantage of predictive analytics allows CX leaders to meet customers’ needs and build an accurate view of their customers quicker than solely relying on collecting data through surveys alone. 

4. Building trust with sincere data privacy

2021 has seen a number of legislative and industry changes that affect marketers’ ability to collect and use data - from Apple’s iOS15 updates and the anticipated eradication of Google’s third-party cookies. Customer concerns around the ways businesses process and use their data are continuing to grow. Businesses should be working towards building a first-party and invited personalization strategy. CX leaders should look to build a transparent relationship with customers in regards to data collection. Most customers are willing to share data if they feel their privacy will be protected and in return for a more compelling and personalized customer experience, from relevant product recommendations to timely offers. Setting clear security principles and safeguarding measures will help to earn customer trust and provide a solid foundation for data collection. 

5. Offering online experiences & subscription models

Ever wondered where Netflix sprang up from? Or who is buying pasta via a subscription service rather than going to the store? Ecommerce professionals should be constantly looking at revolutionizing how consumers interact and purchase your products and services. The power of offering a unique digital experience...and being first to the plate cannot be underestimated. 

Subscription services offer a great way to retain customers, develop a predictable line of recurring revenue and garner customer loyalty and lifetime value. Subscription models are sustainable in the long run, offer great convenience for customers, and help businesses scale growth by understanding customers over time from data gathered during their subscription run. These days consumers subscribe to everything and anything from razors (Harry’s), wonky veg (Odd Box), even sex toys (LoveHoney).

6. Improving Employee Experience (EX) for improved CX

It is no secret that the companies with the happiest employees also have the happiest customers, and it has been statistically proven, too! Leaders in every department should look to provide a satisfying and engaging employee experience, keeping wellbeing front of mind. This will go a long way in keeping company morale high - leading to better work, better products, better interactions with customers, and ultimately improved customer experience.

The bottomline

Customer experience is evolving - and so are customers’ expectations...and it’s no, it’s not all down to the pandemic. Emerging consumer cohorts and younger generations alike are showing a revived willingness to embrace and buy into new forms of engaging and purchasing products and services. In 2022, a CX must not only deliver on convenience, it should be hyper-personalized, gamified and feel seamless across all channels. First-party customer data will provide the fuel for powering these experiences.

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By manik
07th Dec 2021 06:14

thanks for sharing this

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