Small firms are blowing it big time when it comes to the customer experience.
Consumers demand a consistent experience across all touchpoints. But only 4% of SMB brands have a single customer view, according to Consumers’ Expectations For Customer Engagement, a study by Maropost.
This isn’t the consumers talking — it’s the brands themselves. Of the companies surveyed, 60% rely on single-channel strategies — they’re acting like they did 18 years ago, when consumers relied on an average of two touchpoints when buying an item. Only 37% can deliver an omnichannel experience.
Poor and nonexistent omnichannel strategies can lead to a 10% revenue decrease, Maropost claims.
In a word, SMB brands have to move beyond email, the study notes.
One thing the respondents agree on is that consumer expectations are rising — 95% say so. And most feel that the ability to capture all customer signals across multiple touchpoints is their most valuable engagement undertaking.
But lack of knowledge is getting in the way — it’s the top cause of their malaise. Blame it on poor training.
Another problem is the time for implementation — 79% say it takes three months or longer to put in systems. And the longer it takes, the less satisfied they are.
Of those polled, 82% use more than one platform for email marketing, customer engagement and commerce/storefront. Yet a mere 20% view their customer engagement providers as a strategic partners.
“Being able to effectively reach customers across all channels is key to increasing attention, stickiness, loyalty and conversion,” states Ross Andrew Paquette, Maropost founder and CEO.
Paquette adds: “This research reveals that most marketers deal with complicated platforms that slow them down, impede their growth and are difficult to use.”
Maropost, a cloud-based B2C marketing platform, commissioned research firm B2B International to interview 300+ marketing decision-makers at consumer-facing companies with 25-999 employees. The industries covered include retail, publishing, ecommerce, and hospitality.