CX Leaders Double Down on Customer Feedback—Anticipate the Increased Need to Make Their Business More Human

Although 95% of executives stated that CX is important to them, only one-third of employees stated their organization had a proactive CX approach in place

What customer-centric organizations do well is bring the human back into the equation—to the business—and focus on meeting customer needs as the most important driver for achieving their goals. While every organization strives to be customer-centric, most have not succeeded, which creates a pressing need for new approaches to understanding and serving customer needs.

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UserTesting Seventh Annual Customer Experience Report (Graphic: Business Wire)

The unprecedented challenges facing the world today make it even more important that companies find new ways to deliver on their customers' expectations. "The companies that can empathize with their customer, and quickly adapt to support their evolving needs, will emerge from the crisis with a stronger customer foundation than ever before," said Janelle Estes, Chief Insights Officer at UserTesting.

Data from UserTesting’s seventh annual Customer Experience (CX) Survey shows that organizations value the importance of great customer experience, but have struggled with operationalizing the customer feedback process—rapidly identifying insights and turning those insights into action. Those companies that have optimized the customer feedback process will be ahead of the pack in their respective industries, particularly in the coming months, as business models are required to shift to accommodate new customer behaviors and needs. To become a truly customer-centric company, everyone in the organization must have a deep understanding of customer needs and expectations. This requires implementing structures and strategies, and getting operational support from across the organization.

UserTesting, the leading provider of on-demand human insights, conducted the research to better understand the impact customer feedback has on a company’s overall customer experience. The report uncovered three key trends influencing customer experience today:

  1. Greater Need for Organizational Buy-In
    Seventy-four percent of those surveyed said they felt their organization had the values and beliefs of a customer-centric culture. However, those beliefs didn’t always lead to action. While the survey found that a majority of marketing, design and product teams agreed that it was important to get customer feedback before any type of launch, only 50% stated that customer feedback was integrated into the development processes. Additionally, only 50% of respondents felt they were empowered to use customer feedback in their decision-making process.
  2. Lack of CX Maturity Still Plagues Many Companies
    The survey also revealed a significant gap between the importance companies place on CX and the actual strategies and structures in place that allow employees to create great CX. While 95% of executives surveyed stated that CX is important to them, only one-third of employees surveyed stated their organization had a proactive CX approach in place. The remaining two-thirds said their company’s CX strategies were either reactive (acting only when a problem occurred) or that they have no CX strategy in place at all. Mature CX organizations put systems and strategies in place proactively to educate employees about customer needs and empower them to create great products and services.
  3. Human Insight Drives Innovation
    The survey showed that 72% of respondents expect to see an increase in using customer feedback, a jump from 57% in 2019. The survey was conducted before the COVID-19 pandemic, which might change short-term investments. But the trend toward increased customer sensitivity is clear, and even during the outbreak, many companies are relying on fast human insight to ensure they connect emotionally with customers stressed by the crisis. The CX leaders of today, and the future, understand that creating a customer-centric culture means having full organizational buy-in, a mature CX strategy and, most importantly, continuous integration of customer feedback to create great experiences. Customer-centric companies that leverage human insight put themselves in the best position to become industry leaders and innovators.

Concludes Estes, "This year’s report shows us that although organizations want to be customer-centric, they still have a lot of work to do to support their employees in feeling empowered to, and capable of, leveraging customer feedback to drive their decision-making."

To access the full 2020 Customer Experience Industry Report, click here.

Survey Methodology

The survey asked more than 7,600 professionals across a wide variety of industries how their organizations are approaching customer experience and conducting CX research. The survey was divided into sections based on the respondent’s job role, plus a set of general questions asked of everyone and was fielded between December 2019 and January 2020.

About UserTesting

UserTesting enables every organization to deliver the best customer experience powered by human insight. With UserTesting’s on-demand Human Insight Platform, companies across industries make accurate customer-first decisions at every level, at the speed business demands. With UserTesting, product teams, marketers, digital and customer experience executives, designers and UX researchers confidently and quickly create the right experiences for all target audiences, increasing brand loyalty and revenue. UserTesting has more than 1,500 subscription customers, including more than half of the world’s top brands, and has delivered human insights to over 35,000 companies to-date. Backed by Accel, Greenspring, Insight Partners, and OpenView, UserTesting is headquartered in San Francisco, CA. To learn more, visit www.usertesting.com.

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