Behind the pillars: Defining each step of the customer journey.

May 23, 2023 By: Tom Arundel

As consumers come to expect a lot more from their digital experiences, do you know where you need to optimize yours?

Despite more available data than ever, many digital teams struggle to uncover the insights needed to answer this question. And it’s why we created Optimize the 5 pillars of the digital customer journey, where we unpack the critical aspects of the customer experience to focus on. Intended to act as a cross-industry compass for any organization looking to navigate their digital experience, the guide lays out the key questions to ask about data and how to answer them. 

But that raises another question: Where did the 5 optimization pillars come from in the first place?

Defining the optimization pillars. 

Earlier in 2023, we launched Atlas, a collection of pre-built guides that outline, step-by-step, the questions and answers digital teams need to provide better online and mobile customer experiences. While the majority of Atlas guides are industry-specific, like, for example, retail’s order flow or travel’s booking flow, the Quantum Metric team recognized the need for something even more foundational that any organization could use. 

After interviewing Quantum Metric customers from industries across the board to effectively develop Atlas, we discovered the shared similarities between the steps their customers take in the digital journey:

  • Discovery: That initial customer touchpoint.
  • Acquisition & conversion: Moving prospects through the funnel to become customers and keeping them for life. 
  • Account management: Giving customers the ability to self-serve online. 
  • Help & support: Bringing it all together with exceptional customer service. 
  • Platform monitoring: Everything that happens behind the scenes, like the technology organization uses, to deliver that experience. 

That was our big lightbulb moment: While every business and every customer is unique, the stages of their digital journey can be similar. This realization then paved the way for the 5 optimization pillars. 

Uncovering the path to digital excellence. 

From Lululemon to Western Union, Quantum Metric has worked with hundreds of leading companies, listening and gathering data to understand the differences and similarities in how customers interact with brands across industries, including retail, travel, financial services, healthcare, and beyond. 

What we discovered is that there isn’t a single path to digital excellence. Instead, it’s the culmination of methodologies and capabilities that allow an enterprise to excel and deliver digital experiences quickly and confidently. 

However, working with our customers and empowering them with insights that move the needle for their business, we noticed that the world’s most successful enterprises all have one thing in common: the ability to understand customer needs and pain quickly and at scale to proactively address them.

For example, when customers first interact with your brand, they’re in discovery mode. It’s an opportunity to acquire by educating them about who you are and your products and services, drawing them in with relevant messaging, and a frictionless experience.

First impressions count. But are they bouncing when they arrive on your website or mobile app? Can you identify why? Were they looking for a specific offer or a message that didn’t resonate? Or was there an error or slow API that turned them away? If they landed from a marketing campaign, these could be expensive lessons that increase your cost per acquisition. 

In this case, achieving digital excellence involves quickly and confidently diagnosing what caused your customer to bounce, how many others were having the same problem, and what it costs your business. This enables you to determine how to prioritize this issue among the many others in your backlog.

As the customer advances through other stages of the customer journey—acquisition, conversion, account management, support, etc.—the path to digital excellence is similar and requires you to understand 3 things:

  1. When and why customers are struggling
  2. Whether you’re working on the things that matter most to customers and the business
  3. How to achieve the above steps efficiently when digital expertise is scarce

And that’s exactly what we cover in our cross-industry guide. 

See the top questions already asked by leading brands and how to answer them.

You don’t need to reinvent the wheel when it comes to digital. Now that you’ve caught a glimpse at what’s behind the optimization pillars, get your copy of the guide, Optimize the 5 pillars of the digital customer journey, where we share insights to cut organizational drag, increase confidence, and deliver digital excellence.

Inside, you’ll find:

  • The top time wasters slowing down your digital transformation 
  • Key questions to ask about your data at every touchpoint and how to answer 
  • Stories from leading brands across top industries like travel, retail, and banking

Download the full guide here.

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