Content Management for the Sake of Customer Experience
“Content” is by far one of the most-used buzzwords today. But what does it really mean? From product information to content marketing, there are numerous steps in the content supply chain that can get lost in the shuffle.
Most companies, both large and small, know they need a content strategy, though many may be unsure where to start. And things are not getting any easier. A recent Forrester survey of 200 business leaders in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Germany and France shows that companies across all industries are struggling to handle the ever-increasing volume of digital content in customer communication channels.
This is also impacting the retail industry. As more and more purchasing occurs online, retailers have to make sure the digital experiences they provide are as accommodating as customers expect an in-store experience to be. The key to making digital shoppers happy is through optimized content — paid, earned and owned. For retailers trying to digitally transform and operate effectively, customer experience must be a primary business goal.
According to the Forrester study, 80 percent of business leaders believe that content challenges negatively impact their ability to deliver on their objectives, yet only 30 percent think their current customer journeys are consistent. These numbers shine a spotlight on the discrepancy between what business leaders know about the importance of customer experience and the experience that's actually being delivered. It's not enough to know how important content consistency is; it must also be put into practice.
So where is this disconnect coming from?
The report indicates that companies are relying far too heavily on a variety of disjointed web content management systems, network drives, document management systems, and translation by humans, which result in organizational silos that prevent the seamless flow of content. Today’s customers want information delivered flawlessly and effortlessly to their screens. An interrupted content supply chain is simply unacceptable for today’s digital shoppers.
Here are a few tips to climb out of the content trap that has so many of today’s businesses stumped:
- Employ a holistic content management strategy that atomizes and automates the content supply chain and ensures product, marketing, sales and support information are up-to-date, consistent and personalized for the customer's needs at that moment.
- Prioritize keeping product information relevant and up-to-date. This is what educates customers, so access to accurate and consistent information is arguably the best way to drive a purchase rather than cause consumers to exit out of the browser window.
- Use a global content operating model (GCOM) to integrate all the elements of a content supply chain. Through the alignment of people, departments, language translation and artificial intelligence, GCOMs allow retail companies to support the day-to-day operations for creating and delivering global content.
Today’s customers are savvier than ever, creating new challenges for retailers. The good news is that technology is evolving on behalf of retailers to make delivering a seamless customer experience less of a headache so that their energy can instead be spent on growing their business.
Arjen van den Akker is the director of product marketing at SDL, a global innovator in language translation technology, services and content management.
Related story: Future-Proofing CX Through Content-as-a-Service