Organisations must accept that the ‘digital job’ is never done and continue to evolve with a citizen’s needs
Citizens and consumers will quickly “click-off and check-out” of a digital service if their expectations aren’t met, finds a survey.
The study, Demanding Digital, commissioned by digital services firm Atos, found that a third of consumers said that failing digital services affect brand loyalty while the majority of consumers will give organisations just a couple of chances to get a digital experience right before they give up.
Underlining the critical role the digital user experience plays in consumer satisfaction and retention the research, which looked at the attitudes to digital services of 3,150 people across 10 public and private sector markets, highlights significant commercial and other opportunities for organisations that get their digital offerings right.
Over half of consumers admitted to walking away from digital applications without accomplishing what they’d set out to do. Of these, 47 per cent would forgive a brand or organisation the first time expectations aren’t met, but would then expect a flawless service thereafter.
There is acceptance for digital services among consumers and citizens of all ages with just 14 per cent of those questioned identified as ’resistant adopters’, who only use digital services if they have no other choice. Three in 10 (29 per cent) are ’reluctant adopters’ who are willing to try digital services but in general do prefer speaking to someone in person. Two-fifths (39 per cent) are ’receptive adopters’ and open to trying new digital services while 18 per cent are ’rapacious adopters’ and want to be the first to try a new digital service or application.
Half of consumers and citizens over the age of 55 are identified as “receptive or rapacious adopters”.
“What we are seeing here is the rise of a more digitally discerning customer – one that is open to digital, is aware of its benefits and who expects it to deliver on its promise,” said Tom Swanson, chief digital officer, Atos UK&I. “Organisations need to think about their customers differently when it comes to digital and resist grouping them by age and gender but rather in the context of behaviours and expectations.
“Consumers and citizens alike are demanding when it comes to digital – they are extremely clear about what they expect a digital service to deliver which means that organisations need to get their experience up-to-par because they’ve made it clear they won’t stick around and wait for you to perfect the service.”
It is imperative that organisations keep updating their digital offering in line with expectations to retain loyalty. Nearly half of respondents said they would abandon a digital service or application they have been using for a long time due to worsening performance.
When organisations update their digital services, consumers want to see a simpler, cleaner experience (58 per cent); a focus on enhanced speed of use (47 per cent) and increased platform reliability (36 per cent). While getting the basics right is important, individuals expect more sophisticated improvements as well, such as a tailored service, further down the line. If this is implemented correctly, 50 per cent said they would be more likely to become a repeat customer.
Swanson concluded: “The digital job is never done. Consumers and citizens expect digital services and applications to evolve in line with their needs. Right now organisations need to get the basics right, but over time they will expect more personalisation and a greater level of complexity. Worryingly half of consumers and citizens feel that digital services are currently built with the organisation in mind rather than the customer – and that needs to change. The customer has to be at the heart of the user experience because today they are the ones that decide if a service is fit-for-purpose, not those implementing them.”
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