10 Ways in which Brands are Innovating Consumer Experience
10 Ways in which Brands are Innovating Consumer Experience

COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns have reshaped how we live, shop, and interact with each other. The biggest transition is work from home, due to which consumers have changed their traditional shopping habits and have opted for online shopping through websites or apps. 

Shopper behavior has changed irreversibly in the past 12 months. Their expectations have gone through the roof, shown a clear preference for online-first experiences, and haven't hesitated to abandon brands that couldn't keep up. 

Now's a great time to take stock of what worked for shoppers and what didn't and use these insights to design the best customer experience for your demanding shoppers and set yourself up for success in 2021 and beyond. If you're looking to get started, here are the key takeaways from a webinar 'Let’s Talk Shop – Your Digital CX Roadmap for 2021' -  a joint initiative by Indianretailer.com and Freshworks:-
Video Interaction - As face-to-face interactions have become limited, video quickly becomes a critical part of the customer experience. It is easy to digest, entertaining, engaging, guides through the sales funnel, and provides real-time support to the customers. 
Open Community Platform - To support people amid the deadly COVID-19 second wave crisis, MakeMyTrip Foundation announced the launch of CoviRide, an open, peer-to-peer community platform, to help individuals, organizations seek and provide transport-related assistance.
Digital Queues - BigBasket implemented a token system where if consumers don't get a delivery slot, they will get a token that assures them of a slot later.
Digitizing Stores -
Digitizing walking tracker by putting an AI layer on CCTV camera to count the number of people entering the store and the heatmap of people at the counter queue and trail rooms.
E-receipt and Touchless Payments - E-Receipt and touchless payments are good for business and even for consumers. Both the methods digitally engage an offline customer, allowing a business to build a 360° picture of the customer, which merges data gathered through online and offline interactions.
Automation - Automation technologies allow you to closely monitor business processes and collect data so you can fine-tune workflows and further improve CX. It standardizes and streamlines marketing, order processing, shipment, and post-sales support to deliver a consistent brand experience to customers. Chats and Whatsapp bots help personalize the customer experience in retrospect. For e.g., BigBasket's instant business, an automated vending machine at corporate locations, took a big hit because everyone was home; therefore, they created an unmanned store in apartments to ease access.
Augmented Reality - AR applications have been on the rise, with virtual ‘try-before-you-buy’ experiences enabling customers to virtually try on different earring styles from the comfort of their homes. For instance, Lenskart users can try glasses on realistic 3D models of themselves by clicking a selfie using their webcams.
Loyalty Program - BigBasket gave an edge to loyal customers by giving them early slots to place an order during the rush hours of the pandemic, which helped them retain customers and benefited them in a huge way. 
Faster Checkout - Keep the process short; if possible, include a guest checkout and auto-fill the customer's details. 
Engaging Social Content - Offer a mix of informative and entertaining content. Include engaging social content and encourage social sharing to create a community with your customers.
From a customer experience point of view, either automate, eliminate or simplify. Take charge and pivot your business model to help your customers back to their feet while minimizing your costs and efforts. Let the customer enjoy the shopping journey!

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