Gartner predicts that by 2020 customers will manage 85% of their relationship with a business without interacting with a human. What interactions do take place will have to be quick and intuitive. Forrester estimates that 45% of U.S. adults will abandon their online purchase if they can’t find a quick answer to a question.
The digital dynamic has made delighting the customer an essential goal for nearly every organization. With customer relationships increasingly defined by digital channels, optimizing that experience is leading many organizations to the cloud as a way to speed up deployment times, lower costs, and add not only better functionality but also entirely new ways to serve customers.
“Only customer-obsessed businesses can increase market share, revenue and profit in the age of the customer,” says Peter Burris, a veteran industry analyst.
Wanted to share some facts from an interesting article that I read this week – Paul Gillin’s ‘The Customer-Centric Business: Great Expectations’ talks about compelling survey facts regarding cloud computing transformation and its impact on the customer services.
CIO’s 2016 State of the CIO Survey finds that 63% of CIOs currently meet with external customers, and 54% of those are looking to increase that frequency in the coming year. Two-thirds of IT leaders surveyed by IDG Research cite security as a challenge to implementing a cloud strategy, up slightly from the previous year’s study. Among organizations in the financial sector, 78% cite security as a concern. Because of the nature of their business, cloud computing vendors have a compelling interest to provide state-of-the-art protection to their customers. And most do.
Reputable cloud providers are more than willing to put their money where their mouth is on this issue. More than half of the respondents to the IDG Research survey say they require security guarantees from cloud providers. Security shouldn’t be a concern when moving to the cloud. In reality, it has become a strength.
Customers increasingly demand that the companies they do business with not waste their time with irrelevant marketing or promotional offers. But businesses can use cloud services to gather rich data that lets them customize and even personalize the customer experience. Cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) software can capture data from multiple touch points, as well as social network interactions, to present a unified and personalized experience across multiple channels.
The cloud is helping organizations to redefine the customer experience in several ways: Insights-as-a-service, customization, personalization, functionality and building trust.
For instance, companies can tap into world-class services to analyze and better understand customer needs at an affordable cost. Data-intensive tasks like analyzing years of sales data to identify patterns, once the domain of only the largest companies, are now available at a price nearly any business can afford. These insights can be used to better target promotional campaigns and delight the customer with personalized recommendations.
The arrival of the empowered customer has rewritten the laws of competition. Presenting an engaging experience is not simply table stakes for customer acquisition and retention, it’s an opportunity to realize operational efficiencies and develop new revenue streams through more precise targeting and better understanding of customer needs.
Please share your thoughts on how cloud computing might change the customer service industry.
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