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The crucial role of digital experience in a successful e-commerce venture

21 Apr 2021

Article by Empired head of digital & experience design Kevin Miller.
 

The user experience has become a critical differentiator for companies engaging with customers online. Customers are no longer willing to put up with clunky, complex processes to complete their online purchases. And, with recent lockdowns and social-distancing measures encouraging more people to do their shopping online, consumers are savvier than ever. 

This makes an organisation’s digital presence a key component in e-commerce success.

Customer expectations have been rising steadily as organisations get better at delivering frictionless experiences. Developing a strong online relationship with the customer is a crucial part of doing business in the digital era. 

Businesses must invest in an omnichannel experience that delivers connection and consistency across all devices, platforms, and channels. This is the only way to compete successfully.

Three key elements make up the e-commerce experience:

  • Brand assets, including messaging and visuals
  • Platforms that power shopping, including technology integrations
  • External customer touchpoints such as social media or email marketing.

It’s essential to consider all three elements together to create a cohesive experience aligned to strategic objectives.

The process starts with understanding the customer journey and how the business can address customer needs and pain points. This should underpin a process of continuous development to ensure ongoing excellence and avoid stagnation.

Technology is the lynchpin that determines the success or otherwise of an e-commerce offering. It’s important to think beyond sales and include every aspect of the customer’s experience. A digital experience platform (DXP) helps deliver a smooth and consistent customer experience across all channels.

A robust and powerful DXP lets companies develop strong marketing assets and back these up with fast loading times, easy website navigation and robust security. This enables businesses to strengthen their relationship with customers, upsell and cross-sell more effectively, offer advanced payment options, and individualise the user’s experience.

Businesses can also use the information gathered by the DXP to understand customer behaviour and trends, tailoring offers and campaigns accordingly.

The solution brings together content, commerce, multichannel marketing and predictive analytics, offering the ability to launch surveys, social integration, automated email marketing, customer personalisation and more. These activities take into account the entire customer lifecycle, from intelligent optimisation and lead generation to conversion and repeat business.

Businesses looking to recover strongly from COVID-19 should consider implementing or upgrading their e-commerce capabilities. Working with an experienced and knowledgeable partner is crucial to ensure a strong return on investment and a successful project.