There are a lot of X’s flying around these days, and we’re not talking about superheroes. We’re talking about customer experience (CX) and user experience (UX), two of the most popular topics for marketers these days.
Confused? Let Forbes clear it up:
“User experience deals with customers’ interaction with a product, website, or app. It is measured in things like abandonment rate, error rate, and clicks to completion. Essentially, if a product or technology is difficult to use or navigate, it has a poor user experience.
Customer experience, on the other hand, focuses on the general experience a customer has with a company. It tends to exist higher in the clouds and can involve a number of interactions. It is measured by net promoter score, customer loyalty, and customer satisfaction.”
For any business, poor UX will hurt your business. If your website is hard to navigate, your messaging confusing, or too slow, customers will find a better solution in your competitors. If you are an online-only business, your website might be your only contact with your customers. For online businesses, then, improving the digital experience is improving the customer experience. But if your company has any sort of online interaction with your clients, CX and UX are both critical.
Here’s the problem: UX is usually the responsibility of IT and CX usually resides in Customer Service, Operations, or Marketing. (Forrester reports that just 13% of companies combine their UX and CX functions.) But bringing UX and CX together to collaborate and create the optimal customer experience across all touchpoints needs to be a priority for all businesses. But don’t expect the functions to merge, rather embrace the differences for more creative and innovative solutions.
Benefits of CX and UX collaboration include:
- Better CX and Better UX. By understanding the full picture of how the customer interacts with the product and the business, both CX and UX are improved and strengthened. Either function alone does not have enough information to understand the big picture.
- Advance knowledge. UX statistics and analytics can inform CX by giving advance notice of changes in information search, usage patterns, and inbound communications. At the same time, changes on the CX side (for example, regarding declining satisfaction) may be triaged back to the need to revise or revitalize the UX of the product, website or app.
- Brand Guardrails. Since Marketing is usually an active player in CX (often with customer service and operations), the company’s brand identity can be better expressed on the UX side through collaboration with the CX team. The brand should form the foundation for both CX and UX decisions.
In their report, Forrester notes that UX is often concerned with design, while CX is more concerned with measurement and culture. However, both functions are concerned with understanding and serving the customer, and as such, contribute to the culture of the organization. While there is no need to rush to reorganize, facilitating collaboration and cohesion between the CX and UX functions can only benefit your business – and your customer.