You already know that providing an exceptional customer experience (CX) is essential for the success of any business. It’s too simple, too basic, and people tend to overlook it, which is the issue. Recently, companies have been in the news for negative reasons, making big mistakes in providing even basic customer experience.
Below we explore what we see as the top CX trends for 2024 that will be driving business and guiding business decisions.
1. Mind-Blowing AI
Okay, so there’s this buzz about generative AI—you’re either stoked about the possibilities or rolling your eyes at the mention of it. We’ve seen AI-generated content causing chaos in the news, autonomous vehicles getting the boot for causing traffic nightmares, and healthcare AI errors leading to lawsuits.
Was it just moving too fast, or is it a total bust? Truth is, it’s like any tech—it has amazing potential, but you need to handle it with care. Avoid the mad rush and think about integrating it smartly into a bigger CX strategy.
The AI trend is set to explode in 2024, but only if CX providers can make it work on a large scale—with a focus on enhancing instead of replacing human effort. This means using AI models to handle interactions across different applications, platforms, channels, and industries—just like the omnichannel evolution. Investing in infrastructure and algorithms is fine, but it’s also about building governance around them.
2. Customer Journey Management
Focusing on relationships and customer journeys rather than just transactions isn’t a groundbreaking idea. It’s been a CX goal for ages, and omnichannel technology started making strides in that direction. Many companies got lost in the navigation, though, thanks to technology and processes that still don’t play nice with each other.
So, why are customer journeys a 2024 trend? Look beneath the journeys; it’s about managing and optimizing them. And guess what brings us back around? Yep, generative AI.
Omnichannel technology connected chats, emails, website, social media, and calls, but there’s so much data! The automation from generative AI is what’s going to take us closer to a seamless journey approach in CX.
3. Macroeconomic Trending
So, remember those predictions about a 2023 recession? Didn’t happen, but in 2024, we’re expecting some inflationary jitters. Governments will try to control rising prices, and investors will play it safe.
When it comes to CX, it’s less about the experience and more about the investments needed for top-notch CX delivery. As companies juggle priorities, we’ll see some shifts in 2024, especially with locations.
As hub cities across India and the Philippines become more densely saturated, South Africa might be the new go-to, with its business process outsourcing (BPO) industry expected to triple by 2030. The region is consistently voted one of the two most attractive BPO locations in the world.
4. Buying Differently
We hear about shopping 2.0 every few years, but this time we’re not talking about the customers. With all the changes in the landscape, if they’re going to deliver exemplary CX, organizations will need to be on the lookout to buy differently in 2024.
Expect vendor consolidation to be a thing for many organizations. Just like integrating customer data and journeys, companies will want to slim down vendors and simplify processes. More data from less places with fewer handoffs means potentially bigger returns for driving CX. And forget buying sales, technical support, chat, and social media all from different vendors. Brands will be looking for one trusted partner who can do it all and do it well, with the data and expertise to deliver on all the trends we’re discussing.
But, it also means companies need to rethink how they go about the customer journey in procurement. Time for some deep digging and tough talk about what matters in their buying decisions.
5. Sector Knowledge
Consider this “buying differently 2.0,” but for every organization looking to consolidate vendors, there will be another looking to invest in sector expertise. For these organizations, industry knowledge will be the boss, influencing decisions more than just solutions or capabilities. Just as organizations consolidate customer journeys, they’ll be looking for CX providers who get their sector.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking specialization will be less complex than consolidation. Companies will demand that CX providers take stock of their business, clearly define the top sectors they support, and demonstrate their knowledge of the relevant issues, concerns, trends, and metrics.
And here comes the tricky part—companies will be looking for CX providers who not only know the sector, but who can speak their language. If the go-to-market plans aren’t aligned in all aspects, they will be looking elsewhere.
At the end of the day, we’re all customers, and we all want the best CX. Contact us to chat about how these trends impact your business, and how we can bring game-changing CX to your organization.