Why software will become the most important thing in your business – Part 1

Part 1 – Customer Experience

It’s all very well having an amazing advertising campaign, great brand awareness, an award-winning marketing strategy, and driving millions of potential customers to your business. However, if when they arrive at your front door they are not immediately delighted by their experience, you can be sure they won’t be around very long.

This is especially true now that the initial contact between a customer and your business will most likely be through a digital channel. In this case, the first and potentially only interaction that customers will have with your company may be nothing more than a piece of software.

More specifically, they will be interacting with a huge array of integrated software systems including your website, mobile apps, e-commerce platform, online search and comparison tools, customer review systems, payment gateways, order management and customer services systems, online account management, fulfilment and delivery solutions and finance systems. But all of these are still nothing more than pieces of software.

So with this in mind, are you taking the design, development and continued improvement of your software systems as seriously as you should?

For example, what level of investment are you committing to the development and enhancement of your website and e-commerce platform compared to the amounts spent on advertising and marketing?

If the answer is “not much”, then here’s why you might want to think again.

The quality of a software system (in this case your website and e-commerce platform) in terms of its functionality, usability, performance and reliability may be the sole measure of whether the “foot fall” will convert into customers.

This is not about having a beautiful design. It’s about providing the customer with the simplest possible journey to complete their goals. This means creating software that functions perfectly, deals with complexity seamlessly, and hides that complexity from the end user.

These days, a customer’s goal is not just about completing and online journey through to some sort of purchase or call-to-action. They are expecting to be able to complete all aspects of their relationship with your company through the digital channel and preferably complete these tasks instantaneously and without human interaction.

Providing this level of sophistication is not an easy task and will require a significant level of ongoing investment.

However there is simply not an alternative option. Companies who fail to provide this level of sophistication will be usurped by their competitors and will eventually go out of business.

It is software, and the implementation and integration of this software, which will provide the experiences demanded by your customers. So stop doing one off “website projects” and start putting software systems at the core of your business strategy.

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