Impact of COVID19 on Customer Experience - Call Page Boy

Impact of COVID19 on Customer Experience

As of March 24, 20% of the world’s population is effectively not leaving their residence except for essential activities.  So what has the impact of this new working norm had on customer experience?

Customer awareness, concern, and buying norms in reaction to the virus is rapidly shifting customer expectations and needs. This is a great opportunity to excel because customer expectations are high now with so much emotion and uncertainty. It has also forced many businesses to rethink what their customer care means.

Shifting Norms

As Working From Home is quickly becoming the new norm for many people, it has massively accelerated the inevitable shift from face-to-face interactions towards omni-channel digital communications.

Research from Salesforce tells us that 75% of people now expect a consistent experience wherever they engage with brands – be it through social media, websites or direct messaging. Immediacy is also in demand, with 64% of consumers expecting companies to interact with them without delay.

Customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator. A good example of this is Amazon, where the delivery and convenience often acts as a driver for the products themselves. Consumers are no longer tolerant of poor digital performance and experiences. A third of all consumers will desert their suppliers after just one sub-standard digital customer experience.

Digital Options

Digital options for products and services has become a necessity for both companies and customers who are confined at home. Adoption to these digital options is growing rapidly, even strong growth within the most “digitally resistant” of customers. For some companies, the rapid development of digital functionalities is key to ensuring continuity of services. Many companies being forced into digital transformation in order to survive.

Digital needs such as online stores, online returns, online customer service for queries or complaints are just some of the digital transformations and/or improvements currently being explored by companies. Customer Experience shifts during COVID isn’t just about your current customers, what about your marketing and branding efforts?

L’Oréal China shifted all offline advertising budgets to only online and saw its online make-up sales rose in February.

Moreover, it is also important for brands to recognise that consumer needs and behaviours are changing, and thus brands should re-evaluate their digital storefront experience and address these changes throughout the journey.

Interactive Features

Features on websites enable brands to interactive more with their audiences. This could add a number of benefits including;

  1. More fun to the customer journey which encourage them to repurchase.
  2. Facilitate purchase decision making using technologies such as; virtual try-on, product filters, shop-able virtual stores to replicate the in-store experience and live-streaming.

All these require long-term investment to set up and maintain, but such digital capability helps brands defend future disruptions in physical stores.

Balence

Between looking for cost savings during this time but investing into necessary technologies to keep business going.

Necessity is the mother of invention and there’s no time like a crisis or a recession to force a business to look very frankly at its future strategy and consider where it’s going to be when the storm has passed. The pace at which COVID19 has hit has required many businesses to be very nimble in their response at a time when the mantra ‘innovate or die’ has never been more relevant.

Plenty of Irish SMEs – as well as companies that are not so small – have stepped up to the challenge and are diversifying their offering to cater for new consumer demands, or have completely refocused their enterprise in order to survive.

Source RTE

 

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