What is Consumerization?
In order to talk about “Consumerizing the User Experience” we must first understand what it means, how we got here, and how it systemically is affecting enterprise organizations in the future. Consumerization is the reorientation of product and service designs to focus on the end user as an individual consumer, in contrast with an earlier era of only organization-oriented offerings.
Evolution of the Consumer
There has been a sea change in the expectations of users. Access anytime, anywhere is necessary, productivity and efficiency matters, and expectations for a compelling user experience are demanded.
The number of products and services that can meet user needs have expanded exponentially. This new “what you want, when you want, and where you want it” world challenges old world businesses models relative to the distribution, packaging, and marketing of services that integrate into consumers lifestyles at work, play, and on the go.
There has been a profound change in how content and services are delivered and consumed that systemically affects businesses today and requires a fundamental shift in how we approach user experience.
More importantly, it creates unique opportunities for enterprise organizations to effectively migrate into this world and serve as a trusted source, service, and guide to those seeking to navigate and master this new world.
What’s the Difference Between User Experience vs. Customer Experience?
User Experience is the interaction between your customer and your product. It includes the overall look and feel, the ease of use, and the functionality that puts them in control.
Customer Experience includes all of the touch points, including people, processes and technology, that a customer has with your brand. This is inclusive of user experience, engaging with the organization, customer service, and overall totality and tonality of the entire experience.
Today, the customer journey is complex and less linear, making it more difficult to connect with a brand. However, consumers require brands to understand their needs and engage with them, but in order to engage, they must trust the brand.
The lines between innovation and imitation are disappearing. Companies cannot compete on features alone. There needs to be a fundamental shift in the way customers experience, navigate, and socialize information and communication.”
This shift requires us to engage and empathize with our customers, innovate, and ideate new ways of thinking and then continuously assess and refine the experience to meet the changing needs of employees, partners and customers.
In order to accomplish this and tether your audience, you need to create on-going value so once they are hooked, they stay hooked.
Companies don’t have a choice. They need to get out in front of users by understanding their needs, anticipating how they will behave in the future, and then rigorously focus on facilitating that behavior and continuously improving their products and services to consistently deliver on their brand promise.
Apple did this early on with the iPod. The user behavior of downloading and sharing of music was illegal, so they made it easy, fun, and gave value for the price.
The most forward-thinking companies, like Uber, Venmo, Peleton, AirBnB, and many more have focused on delivering an exceptional customer experience because consumers demanded it. Those same consumers are employees and their interactions in their daily lives are shaping how they behave in the workplace.
Out With the Old, In With the New
An antiquated experience does not resonate with the modern-day consumer. Portals that are difficult to use lend themselves to a lack of engagement or adoption, limited self-service options, and unhappy clients. They value their time as a top priority, and you should too. It is painful and often discouraging when someone has to shuffle through dozens of webpages for a single piece of information, or talk to a chatbot for 20 minutes to resolve one issue.
In contrast, a consumer-centric experience addresses these issues, while also providing an easy-to-use portal, with a design and functionality that adequately reflects the company’s culture and values. A consumer’s initial perception of the experience you provide will set the tone for the rest of their engagement with your company.
Users expect a seamless, frictionless, digital experience that aligns with their daily lives.”
Meeting Consumer Expectations One Step at a Time
Customers want a fresh, easy-to-use interface, a vendor that is responsive when issues arise, and consistency across all platforms. They’re demanding the same functional, elegant experience designed around user behavior for their business apps — just like they’re used to in consumer apps.
Not only do users want functionality and high quality user experience, but they want it fast. With technology advancing so quickly, consumers have become accustomed to having all the information they need at the palm of their hand and become frustrated when it is not.
Providing an exceptional customer experience across every touchpoint should always be a company’s top priority. Modernizing the user experience impacts all facets of an organization incredibly, however modernization doesn’t happen overnight or all at once. It is important to understand your vision for the future, map out the steps necessary to get there.
Your digital transformation is a journey, and no one understands that journey better than Cask. As ServiceNow’s Americas Elite Partner of the Year, we are in the perfect position to help you consumerize your company’s user experience! Contact us and learn more about easy to use platforms that mold to your business needs, and self-service options that will help reduce costs and increase productivity.
Senior Director, Strategy and Innovation at Cask
With over 20 years experience driving digital transformation, Stephanie provides thought leadership and accelerates innovation for our clients across the enterprise. As an Emmy Award winning designer and creative thinker, she brings a passion for creating world class consumer grade experiences with sound business savvy, exceptional leadership skills and organizational change management to ensure rapid adoption of transformational initiatives.