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Savvy marketers know that the internet puts people in control.
These prospective buyers are going on a journey of their own making, and smart marketers know that creating engaging content and being exceptionally helpful will help position their brand as the only logical choice.
I’m going to set out my prejudiced little stall immediately: I hate booking cinema tickets online.
In terms of annoying outdated UX, booking tickets for all the major cinema chains is up there with pagination, full-page takeover ads and reading our old non-responsive site on a mobile.
I looked at the major players Odeon, Vue and Cineworld earlier in the year and each provided a frustrating experience, full of unnecessary distractions and barriers to purchase.
In which we take a look at the experience of using John Lewis from a customer point of view.
Meaning this won’t be a robust test of the ecommerce site’s search functionality, or the quality of its mega-navs, or the persuasiveness of its homepage.
Instead this will involve searching for an item on Google, clicking on the most attractive result, testing the relevancy and helpfulness of its landing page and seeing how quick and easy it is to make a purchase. The customer journey in a nutshell.
The wait is over.
As a returning visitor to Econsultancy, you’ll notice that things are a little different around here.
So what have we been working on? Here’s a whistle-stop tour of the key drivers for what you can experience on the new site.
The consumer voice has never been stronger.
The internet has created a massive increase in the volume of customer feedback data.
Social media, product reviews, customer ratings, online surveys, net promoter score… all these communication channels mean that companies are increasingly having to make their businesses customer-centric.
Adrienne Liebenberg is global B2B marketing director for BP Castrol.
She spoke at the Festival of Marketing about how the company has moved away from traditional comms and PR and into thought leadership and a focus on how the customer interacts with the brand.
With 1.5m unique visitors and 30m page impressions a month Ann Summers’ multichannel strategy is a very effective one.
In fact Ann Summers commands and impressive 98% brand recognition. This is in no doubt helped by the fact that it’s the only erotic retailer to have a major high street presence.
75p of every erotic retailer pound is spent with Ann Summers. The brand has also recently introduced international access through its eBay store and has implemented click and collect with 1,754 orders taken in the first day.
To further bolster its online success Anne Summers wanted to improve the way it personalised the experience for its customers, by adopting a more data driven strategy.
Lets take a look at some of the highlights from a talk given by Ann Summers’ head of ecommerce Matthew Gratze at our two day Festival of Marketing event.
Clive Grinyer, Customer Experience Director at Barclays, is a man with considerable design chops, with tenures at Samsung and Orange, the Design Council and Central St Martins.
At the Festival of Marketing 2014, Clive gave a lesson in how to approach the customer experience design process, from proposition to research, prototype to feedback.
Here's how you can take a fresh look at customer experience in your organisation.
For many years Ryanair revelled in its reputation for being a brash, almost antagonistic airline.
However it is currently undergoing a major rebranding exercise as it seeks to refocus on the customer experience and adopt a friendlier image.
Rebranding campaigns of this scale often take place when a business is on its last legs, so Ryanair is somewhat unique in that it is pivoting from a position of power.
As Europe’s largest airline, Ryanair flies more than 1,600 routes to 30 countries.
Following the relaunch of its ecommerce site at the end of 2013, Halfords online sales have risen 13.7% from the same time last year.
As reported in Internet Retailing last week, Halfords’ online sales represented 12.2% of its total retail sales. Conversion rates have risen by 19% and 92% of online orders were collected in store through its click and collect service.
Impressive figures that certainly position Halfords as a successful multichannel retailer, but what makes the Halfords online experience particularly conducive to improving its revenue?
Recently we’ve featured Halfords in various articles related to ecommerce - social customer service, guest checkouts click and collect - and to be honest this retailer hasn’t come out particularly well.
How do you create content that gets heard from within the maelstrom of online media?
Well, consumers are looking for trusted and credible sources of information. Partnering with influencers who already have the ear of a community can be a way to create trusted content and get it shared by the right people.
Do download the report to read in full, but first I thought I'd pick out my favourite tips.
Customer experience is about relevancy.
Many providers of services are finding that generational relevancy is a new factor they need to consider and one that likely requires a good deal of investment.
It's not prudent to avoid investment and hope that being a second or third mover will keep your digitally-demanding customers just sweet enough.
The fact is, if you improve the customer experience without even changing the service you provide, customers will be happier. They'll think they're getting more for their money and they are.
I'll give an example. First UK Bus introduced mobile ticketing in spring 2014. There's an mticket app on which tickets can be bought, stored and activated. For those of you not in the regions of the UK, these buses were often cash only (smart cards, similar to London's Oyster, are yet to be rolled out).
Here's why this mticketing works and why more companies should be moving sooner.