Have you ever had a customer say, “Have you seen the Domino’s pizza tracker? That’s what I want.”
We’ve all seen the commercial, right? Set to the Ferris Bueller theme, a young man receives a notification from his smartwatch and hurries home to meet the Domino’s pizza delivery man at his doorstep. What does this tell us? We live in a world where consumers want real-time, accurate information at their fingertips.
And within the software development life cycle, it’s easy to get lost in technology and lose sight of the customer.
4 Methods & Mantras
Let’s explore some methods to ensure that your customers are getting the personalized experiences they deserve.
1. Start an initiative with the customer in mind.
Too many times I’ve been involved with a kick-off of a project where the focus is “We bought this package. We want to implement the technology.” This is the critical time to bring the focus back on building the platform around the customer.
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Invest some time to go through the effort of clickable prototyping, which puts the focus on the customer experience versus implementing technology. (By the way, prototyping can involve clickable HTML prototypes or even paper sketches. Just offer some kind of user testing, giving users a chance to navigate from page to page and evaluate functionality, such as dropdown menus.) This small investment could make or break the success and acceptance of a solution for your customer.
2. It’s more than just clicks.
User experience (UX) is more than just the number of clicks on a site or steps to get to an order confirmation screen. Ensure you are talking with your customers about their preferred experience with emails, SMS and even push notifications. A well thought-out communication strategy to ensure that the customer is getting real-time, accurate information will only enhance the experience – and ensure your customer isn’t left second-guessing the process.
3. Don’t have the mindset of “We’ve talked about it. It’s already understood.”
All too often during project check-ins, the focus is on development or completed code. Yes, that’s important. But bring it back to reset expectations regarding personalization and the overall user experience. By doing this, you may also pull out a new requirement that wasn’t previously discussed.
4. Allow time in your plan for change or additional requirements.
That’s the beauty of being agile, right? If time allows, you have the advantage to deliver even more value, and that builds more trust with your customer. When I received that call asking for a “pizza tracker” type status bar, I was thankful that we had built-in time for changes because this ended up being the most talked about experience of the initiative.
It delivered a key benefit for the customer … transparency!
The bar will continue to be raised in regard to personalized experience and transparency in our ever-changing digital world. Take these steps to be a part of the next greatest thing!