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Today’s digital customers are more connected and empowered than ever before. With so many options now available to them at their fingertips, they won’t hesitate to take their business elsewhere if they feel their needs aren’t being met.

These radical changes in customer behaviour and expectation has resulted in many within the manufacturing industry to rethink their customer experience and engagement (CXE) approach completely. So, with more organisations stepping up their CXE efforts, we’ve partnered with Copperberg to analyse the state of CXE in manufacturing.

Drawing on survey responses of 100+ professionals who represent some of the world’s most important manufacturing industries, we examine where things stand now and what could change for those who prioritise improving their CXE strategy.

Here’s a summary of our findings:

Improving CX is a top priority

63.73% of respondents placed creating a seamless CX as a top priority for their manufacturing business, highlighting that CX is a pressing matter for most industry players. So too, is pivoting to omnichannel CX, with 66.67% of respondents agreeing that omnichannel CX is very important in providing a seamless CX.

The signs are there that manufacturers have started to be more sophisticated in their approach to CX, laying the groundwork for future gains. The outlook for the next few years appears especially favourable to those who exploit new CX-centric business models.

Technology is the heartbeat of organisational transformation

CXE in manufacturingCX is an organisation-wide effort. It requires people with different skills from different parts of the company to work together to deliver a CX that stands out from an already crowded market. However, this is much easier said than done. Getting all parts of a business to function as one usually requires an organisational restructure.

Our findings suggest that manufacturers have already succeeded in restructuring their organisation to support their CX-centric ambitions, with representatives from sales (83.33%), customer service (69.61%) and marketing (65.69%) the most popular choices to lead transformational CX initiatives.

Manufacturers are also leveraging technology to help them grow into CX-centric firms, with 88.24% of them revealing customer relationship management (CRM) is their most relied-on tool in their CX technology stack.

To summarise, we see a shift towards digital customer-relationship strategy that meets customer needs as they unfold – focusing specifically on building a seamless customer experience which uses data-based insights and incorporates the human touch.

The pandemic has had long-lasting effects on customer behaviour and CX transformation

Recent events have accelerated the move to digital buying, with 55.88% of manufacturers saying they’ve noticed customers shopping online more frequently over the past few years. The pandemic visibly impacted customer behaviour in other ways too, with at least half of them (50%) now demanding simpler and faster service.

With this in mind, manufacturers must not only leverage technology to deliver high quality products, but also use it effectively to provide exceptional CX to meet the higher expectations of the new age customer.

By investing in analytics and business intelligence solutions, manufacturers can gain access to vital customer data, providing them with real-time insights that helps them learn more about customer behaviour.

And the more data that’s collected, the more patterns will appear, meaning manufacturers will be better informed to advise their customers on what they need (and on the right channels) before the customer knows themselves.

Read about the above in more detail, as well as:

  • The areas holding manufacturers back from CX progress
  • The CX initiatives creating value for manufacturers today
  • The opportunities available to manufacturers who prioritise CXE

Download the report by clicking on the button below.

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