Is location the next customer experience battleground?


Personalisation remains a priority for customer experience leaders looking for a CX advantage over their competitors - and location is emerging as the key battleground. 


21st Oct 2022

As customer experience leaders continue to strive for ways to deliver more personalised experiences, new research indicates that location is becoming the new personalisation battleground. 

A new study from Forrester has found that CX leaders continue to regard personalisation as the key to improving customer experience. And a strong majority view the incorporation of more advanced and sophisticated location technology infrastructure as the best way to achieve this.

Commissioned by Radar and conducted by Forrester, the study surveyed 213 US CX leaders on the use of location data and location technology, and its impact on CX personalisation.

As well as discussing the technology, the respondents also provided insights on improving CX more generally – with 89% of CX leaders admitting that making CX improvements is a critical or high priority.

Graph of top priorities of CX leaders

Regarding the improvements themselves, 83% agreed that creating more personalised experiences was a top priority. Bridging the physical/digital divide also featured heavily, with the majority in favour of incorporating some form of unified omnichannel experience to tackle the issue.

Easier said than done

As the adage goes, some things are a lot easier said than done. Providing a more personalised experience has been a long-term fixture on the CX agenda of most companies, but recent events have thrust it into the spotlight where it can no longer be ignored.

With the changes in customer habits that events over the past three years have brought about, personalisation has risen in importance amongst customers at a rate that organisations have been unable to keep up with.

As brands struggle to personalise experiences across digital and physical channels, they stand to lose revenue due to sub-par customer experiences. For many, the solution to this problem is location technology.

Location technology

With the continued digitisation of much of the world, it is perhaps no surprise that customers are yearning for a more personalised, human touch. However, paradoxically, it appears that CX leaders view the best way to improve personalisation is via another technological advancement: location intelligence.

Location technology allows organisations to leverage space, place, time, and geography in order to make more informed decisions based on the data. Within retail and restaurants, this is primarily used for curbside pickup arrival detection, delivery tracking, and in-store promotions.

83% of CX leaders consider improving location technology to be the top priority.

However, for customer experience its ability to help connect the digital and the physical is particularly pertinent. In doing so, it helps to create seamless hybrid experiences, which have proven to lead to higher customer satisfaction than physical or digital alone.

With its capacity to remedy one of the major CX pain-points – the physical/digital divide – predictably, making improvements to location technology infrastructure is very popular amongst CX leaders, with 83% agreeing/strongly agreeing that it is the most important priority for improving customer experiences.

Despite being held in such high regard, 60% of leaders believe that their organisations do not use location technology as well as they should – a particularly troubling insight when you consider that 55% of CX leaders claim that not using location technology effectively could result in lost revenue.

Being hampered by CX technology limitations is not restricted to location technology. A report released by Forrester last year revealed that over two-thirds of senior CX professionals believed their management platforms were preventing them from providing good experiences.

59% of companies are set to increase investment in location technology.

In this instance however, it appears that organisations are committed to tackling their shortcomings, with 59% of companies set to increase investment in the technology, with an average expected revenue increase of 15%.

What’s the catch?

As with any system that deals with customer data, protection of said data is paramount. With customers increasingly concerned about what use their data is being put to, privacy and security are the most important qualities of any location technology programme.

Another consideration is the operation of the technology, and whether this will add stress or complications for staff.

In his piece on CX technology, MyCustomer’s Neil Davey discusses the increasing sophistication and complexity of the technology – describing it as a “double-edged sword, because while the greater functionality may be warmly welcomed by some, others may find it excess to requirements, potentially discouraging employees from using it”.

CX technology is a double-edged sword.

Whilst it is clear that the experts within the CX field think very highly of location technology, and there is data to support its merits, organisations should still always consider the impact on their employees before introducing new/revamping existing technologies.

Is the answer to providing more personalised customer experiences really more technology? 


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