Omnichannel Delivers a Better CX
Had a prescription filled recently? Retailers including RiteAid, Walgreens and Wal-Mart offer the option of alerting you by text when your medication is due for a refill or ready for pickup. In 2017, about 30% of CVS Health customers, or 28 million people, used texting for pharmacy orders, according to a Wall Street Journal article. That leaves millions more using more traditional channels, such as receiving voicemail alerts when prescriptions are ready, using an automated phone system to order refills, and making phone calls and seeking in-store consultations with pharmacists on medication issues.
These retailers are leaders in harnessing multiple communication channels for a seamless, integrated customer experience. By 2020, 81% of companies say they expect to be competing mostly or completely based on CX, according to a 2017 Gartner survey. Personalized, omnichannel communications, coupled with easy-to-use and preferred payment methods, are fundamental for building a strong CX.
What makes it omnichannel?
An omnichannel strategy is more sophisticated and effective than multichannel interactions: Instead of simply offering different ways for customers to communicate or buy, omnichannel programs coordinate efforts across channels, making messaging and experience consistent and personalized.
CVS knows who you are, knows when you need something, and proactively (and automatically) reaches out to make the transaction easy and convenient, using your preferred communications channels and devices. Taking it a step further, CVS also suggests other products that may interest you while you shop in a store or online, and by the way, directs you to nearby stores.
Why it matters
This approach sets an expectation of service and convenience for all organizations. Vacation ownership, healthcare RCM, property management, and financial services companies all need to step up their game or face very real marketplace consequences. Brands with a strong omnichannel customer engagement strategy have an 89% customer retention rate on average compared to a 33% rate for companies with a weak omnichannel program, according to Aberdeen Group.
Getting started with omnichannel
- Seize the day. Recurring customer communications, including bills, confirmation notices and HOA governance materials, and payments offer a fast way to start an omnichannel program that can quickly impact CX. These communications also are a sore point along the customer journey: Accenture found that 87% of customers think brands need to put more effort into providing a consistent communications experience. Bills, statements and other mandatory customer correspondence are often the only regular and ongoing connection with customers along the customer journey that companies can control, offering a first-rate opportunity to make positive impressions and build goodwill and loyalty.
- Meet people where they are at. Digital channels are important, but so is paper. Nearly two-thirds, or 65%, of 2,100 consumers say they prefer to receive bills and financial statements through a combination of both online and on paper, according to a June 2017 survey by independent research company Toluna. When it comes to receiving HOA election materials and voting, owners often opt for a mix of online, paper and in-person interactions.
Enabling people to choose how to communicate and pay reduces barriers to customer engagement and improves responses. For example, several recent peer-reviewed studies showed text messaging by retail pharmacies increased medication adherence by as much as 14%, which translates into millions of dollars in savings on additional medical expenses due to the resulting poor health from skipping necessary medications.
- Leverage technology. Using customer communications management software like our cloud-based Expresso application, companies can personalize bills, letters and other customer documents and distribute them through multiple digital and print channels. Expresso provides access to a centralized content library, data input file and custom business rules to further customize communications based on your customer’s specific profile. Additionally, linking to data that supports customer segmentation and business intelligence tools to analyze how customers are reacting to content and channels lets companies immediately and continually improve CX. Other technologies that will grow in importance for omnichannel: Augmented reality, virtual reality, chatbots and artificial intelligence.
- Make it simple. Our ExpressoPay electronic bill presentment and payment platform stores payment preferences across channels. For example, a customer can establish an ACH payment online and use the same information to make a payment via IVR without the hassle of having to input bank account information again.
So what’s your plan for a fully integrated customer experience? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org about maximizing your suite of Expresso and Print&Mail services to build a better omnichannel customer experience.