Defining Customer and User Experience
Customer Experience (CX) and User Experience (UX) are often intertwined terms that are used in the marketing world. Many people get confused thinking that the customer and the user are the same people. However, that’s not completely true. According to Forbes, “user experience deals with customers’ interaction with a product, website, or app.” When you measure user experience, you need to think about the following elements – abandonment rate, task time, success rate, error rate, and clicks to completion. On the other hand, customer experience focuses more on the overall experience that the customer goes through with a specific business and its products and services. There are three main elements for assessing customer experience – customer loyalty, net promoter score, and customer satisfaction.
UX Impact on CX
Despite CX and UX being distinct concepts, blending CX and UX is the only way for companies to have successful outcomes. According to Forbes, “both customer and user experience can’t truly exist and thrive without each other.” User experience revolves around technological interactions with the customer. Positive user interactions lead to delighted customers, which leads to an increase in customer loyalty, customer satisfaction, brand loyalty, and customer retention. It’s important to remember that CX and UX complement each other. A good or bad UX design will straightaway decide whether your product is worth a user’s time and energy.
Key Metrics for CX and UX
When you need to assess customer experience, you need to keep the following metrics and concepts in mind:
- Brand Loyalty – To keep it simple, brand loyalty is defined as the continuation of customers purchasing products from the same brand.
- Customer Loyalty – Customer loyalty is defined as the likelihood of a customer wanting to do business with a company or brand again. Positive reactions from a customer entail that a customer is likely to do business with the brand or company in the future due to the good service and overall good quality of goods they receive from them.
- Customer Retention – Customer retention refers to how businesses keep customers loyal and satisfied with their brand and its products and services.
- Customer Satisfaction – Customer satisfaction is a measurement that helps determine the level of satisfaction a customer has with a company’s products, services, and capabilities. The key is to step into the shoes of the customer to understand their needs rather than directly asking them their expectations.
- Net Promoter Score – Net Promoter Score or NPS, is a popular metric used to measure the level of loyalty a customer has towards your brand. Not just that, this also determines whether customers will recommend your brand to other people. Your NPS score will let you know the percentage of customers who either love, hate, or feel neutrally towards your brand.
When you measure user experience, you need to be aware of the following measurements:
- Abandonment Rate – Abandonment rate is defined as the percentage that a customer leaves or quits before completing an intended task.
- Clicks to Completion – Clicks to completion is the number of clicks a user performs before the task is completed.
- Error Rate – Error rate is the number of times a user makes a wrong entry. A simple example could be entering an incorrect password to an email account. The higher the number of errors, the higher the number of usability problems.
- Success Rate – Success rate is one of the most used metrics in user experience. It is defined as the percentage of users who successfully achieve a particular goal for your product.
- Task Time – Task time is the amount of time a user takes to complete a task.
Essential Techniques for Assessing CX and UX
Omnichannel marketing is a lead nurturing and user engagement approach in which a company engages its customers or prospects on all channels, platforms, and devices to learn more about its products, offers, and support services. This means that not only would a certain business offer support on their website, but they would also offer support through Facebook Messenger, Live Chat, E-mail, and Phone. This way, they can find customers through all available avenues and bring them along the path to purchase. And on the business side, the company can use all the data from customers to understand their audience across channels.
Customer Journey Mapping
According to Salesforce, “customer journey mapping is the process of creating a customer journey map, a visual story of your customer’s interactions with your brand.” This maps out all the touchpoints along the customer journey – website, social channels, and interactions with the marketing and sales team. Each part of the customer’s journey should be included on the map for the brand to understand the needs and expectations of the customer. As a business, this strategy is crucial to optimizing the customer journey in retrospect to the customer.
Self-service is meant to make customers’ lives easier. According to Salesforce, “customer self-service usually combines knowledge bases with the automated handling of basic administrative tasks.” Nowadays, swiftly responding to customers has become imperative for successful interaction and more importantly, a positive brand reputation. Customers want their experience to be smooth and flawless. Rather than going through the trouble of waiting for a business version of a fairy godparent, customers prefer to take matters into their own hands to solve their problems.
According to Indeed, “social listening is paying attention to what others say about your business, product or competitors online and then analyzing the results to understand why they are making those comments.” Social listening tracks the big picture, that is, encompassing brand mentions and broader views of the business industries. Oftentimes, people tend to confuse social listening with social monitoring. However, there is a slight difference. While social listening focuses on the big picture, social monitoring dives into the nitty-gritty details of a specific company including its brands, products, and campaigns.
User interviews are a research method that is conducted one-on-one with a user to build a deeper connection with them. The responses from the interview can be used to generally examine the user experience from a big picture point of view. According to LinkedIn, “understanding the user and learning their goals, motivations, needs and pain points is important.” User interviews can give you a proper outlook on the goals, perceptions, and experiences of the users. In other words, it is a qualitative method to gather and analyze user data. At the end of the day, it’s all about designing the perfect user experience.
Card sorting is a research method used to figure out the information architecture of a website. According to Medium, “the researcher should make sure the cards are in a random order to guard against sorting bias.” This research method will help you to figure out user expectations and desires as well as understand the topics you come across on the cards. There are two types of card sorting techniques – open card sort and closed card sort. According to Medium, they are defined as the following:
- Open Card Sort: The participant can create categories of their own or add concepts that are missing. It’s more flexible and allows for a more accurate portrayal of a user’s mental model. It can allow for new terms to make their way into the project and expand the team’s understanding of the users and their relationship to the concepts. These new cards that participants add could be included in future sessions or left out, depending on how the researcher wants to structure the study.
- Closed Card Sort: The participant is limited to using only the cards provided to them. This method is more likely to result in clear patterns and give an indication of which concepts relate best to which categories.
Normally, focus groups refer to a group of people gathering to have an analytical conversation about a particular topic. However, in the case of user experience, the objective is to discover and understand what users want from your product. According to LinkedIn, “conducting focus groups allows you to learn about their attitude, opinion, and reactions to concepts that you are testing with them.” All said and done, focus groups are not the best way to analyze user experience data due to the results potentially turning out to be biased. With focus groups, rather than having a mind of their own, participants tend to automatically agree with the most popular voted result, which could result in skewed data.
Gauging CX and UX with PxidaCX
The great thing about customer and user experience is that they both share a common goal of improving experiences for people encountering a given business and its products. PxidaCX is a powerful tool that allows users to have a seamlessly flawless survey experience. With a variety of customer experience surveys, it allows businesses to create their own customized surveys and deploy them to gather feedback on their experience as current and potential users and customers. Sign up for a free trial today!