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The top CX tools & trends of 2023
The top CX tools & trends of 2023

The top CX tools & trends of 2023

In the fast-paced and saturated digital business landscape of 2023, CX is more a critical factor to success than ever before.

In the fast-paced and saturated digital business landscape of 2023, customer experience (CX) is more a critical factor to success than ever before. It’s become evidently clear that consumers make their own decisions online, and are the drivers of industry changes and expectations, and beyond this, are not willing to wait for companies to catch up with this revelation.

Immersive CX is an industry buzzword new to the scene in 2023. It redefines CX as omnichannel communication with companies that is made up of natural, fluid interactions. Propelled by both economic uncertainty and the advent of AI making waves in the corporate world, people want real customers service, beyond getting answers and solutions to the questions they seek and problems they have. With significant developments in data over the years, consumers know to expect that you know them. From everything to their contact details to their purchase or usage history with your product or service. Essentially, your customer knows exactly what good CX looks like, and expect nothing less.

CX technologies tools serve as central platforms that enable business to effectively track, manage, and connect with their customers. The right tools offer a framework to build and integrate CX in a manner that meets these evolving consumer expectations, to guide your strategies and outputs in the direction that will see you and/or your business stay ahead of the game. At the end of the day, customers and users are the reason your company exists, and they will ever remain the deciders of whether your company will continue to do so.

The importance of effective CX in 2023

A survey by Zendesk revealed that 70% of consumers spend more with companies that offer fluid, personalized, and seamless customer experiences. CRM tools offer numerous benefits and provide operating frameworks that significantly improve CX. Technology plays a crucial role in building an effective customer experience. It enables companies to predict customer behavior, identify and solve service issues in real-time, and drive customer loyalty retention.

The Consumer Decision Journey

The consumer decision journey (CDJ) is a reconceptualization of the traditional marketing funnel. It is a circular process involving four phases: initial consideration, active evaluation, closure, and post-purchase. Brands can shape the CDJ by actively influencing customers' decision-making process. Automation, proactive personalization, contextual interaction, and journey innovation are crucial capabilities for accelerating customer loyalty journeys.

Strategies to Improve Customer Experience

Digital customer experience encompasses the online interactions and support provided by businesses. It includes elements like personalization, contextual interaction, and predictive insights. Predictive customer insights can help businesses stay ahead of customer churn and dissatisfaction by leveraging data and analytics. Designing CX with a focus on value and security is essential for building trust and loyalty in the digital realm.

  1. Invest in Employee Engagement: Happy and engaged employees are more likely to provide better customer service, leading to improved customer experiences. Recognize and reward top performers, create opportunities for employees to share their insights and recommendations, and empower them to go above and beyond for customers.
  2. Leverage Technology: Technology plays a vital role in enhancing CX. Automating and streamlining processes can reduce response times and improve overall efficiency. Collecting and analyzing customer data can provide valuable insights into their needs and preferences, enabling businesses to deliver more personalized experiences. Additionally, technology solutions like virtual assistants and chatbots can make it easier for customers to access information and assistance.
  3. Analyze CX Operations: Regularly analyze and track key metrics related to customer experience to identify areas for improvement. Customer satisfaction scores, net promoter scores (NPS), and churn rates can help businesses understand their performance. Customer journey mapping can also help identify bottlenecks and areas of friction, allowing businesses to address issues and enhance the overall experience.

Measuring Customer Experience

Measuring CX is fundamental for businesses to understand how they are performing and make data-driven decisions and improvements. There are three core guiding principles for effective CX measurement:

  1. Measure at the Journey Level: Instead of focusing on individual touchpoints or overall satisfaction, measure the customer experience at the journey level. This provides a holistic view of the customer's end-to-end experience.
  2. Invest in Technology: Utilize technology to capture feedback from multiple channels on a daily basis. Integrate survey results and other data into comprehensive dashboards to gain insights into CX performance.
  3. Continuously Improve: Cultivate a mindset of continuous improvement at all levels of the organization. Regularly review and analyze CX metrics, identify areas for enhancement, and implement changes to drive better experiences for customers.

Leveraging Technology to Drive Effective CX

CX can make the difference between winning and losing. Forbes reports that the majority of consumers consider customer service more important than cost. If you want to reduce churn and attract new customers, it is critical to deliver great experiences across all areas of the customer life cycle. Successful businesses understand this and view service as a business competitive advantage rather than an added expense.

The best CX organizations leverage the latest technologies to enhance CX by predicting future behavior and outcomes, identifying and solving service issues in real time, and dramatically improving customer retention. Technology can automate and streamline various processes, such as managing customer inquiries and complaints, which can help reduce response times and improve overall efficiency.

Additionally, technology can be leveraged to collect and analyze customer data, providing insights into their needs and preferences for more personalized experiences. Virtual assistants, chatbots, and other interactive tools can enhance the customer experience by making it easier for customers to access information and assistance.

Implementing the right CX tools, such as a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, can further streamline and optimize customer interactions. A CRM tool enables businesses to centralize customer data, track interactions, and provide personalized experiences at every touchpoint. By leveraging technology effectively, businesses can deliver a seamless and personalized CX that exceeds customer expectations.

The Future of Customer Experience

As technology continues to advance and customer expectations evolve, the future of customer experience holds exciting possibilities. Here are some trends and developments to watch for:

1. Artificial Intelligence and Automation

Artificial intelligence (AI) and automation technologies will play an increasingly important role in delivering personalized and efficient customer experiences. Chatbots, virtual assistants, and AI-powered analytics will enable businesses to provide real-time support, anticipate customer needs, and deliver personalized recommendations.

2. Omnichannel Experience

Customers now expect a seamless experience across multiple channels, including online, mobile, and in-person interactions. Providing a consistent and integrated experience across all touchpoints will be crucial for businesses to meet customer expectations.

3. Hyperpersonalization

Hyperpersonalization involves tailoring the customer experience to individual preferences, needs, and behaviors. Leveraging customer data and advanced analytics, businesses can deliver highly personalized recommendations, offers, and content that resonate with each customer.

4. Ethical and Trustworthy CX

With growing concerns about data privacy and security, businesses will need to prioritize ethical and trustworthy CX. Transparency in data collection and usage, as well as strong security measures, will be essential to build and maintain customer trust.

Beyond Technology Adoption

When it comes to improving the customer experience in a digitally empowered environment, it’s important to also consider that the pursuit for better CX is about more than just technology. Leaders must establish the groundwork for outstanding customer experiences within their organisations before they are given to customers. It is important to remember that technology is an enabler, not a solution. It is to be integrated with broader business strategies and decisions, rather than relied upon for them. Here are some techniques and considerations for integrating technology into the customer experience:

  1. Use technology to enhance, not replace, human interaction: While technology can automate certain aspects of the customer experience, and where AI offers an alluring and cost-effective solution to generic ‘customer service goals’, it should not replace human interaction entirely. Companies should use technology to enhance the customer experience, not replace it. This can be done - for example - by leveraging data to better understand your customer, the problems they are encountering and the solutions they are seeking.
  2. Personalize the customer experience: Technology can be used to personalize the customer experience from initial touchpoints by providing tailored recommendations, personalized messaging, and customized guided experiences through your product or service. Figure out why your customer is there, and show them your value before you try to sell or upsell. Show them that you understand them, and you’re here to help them. Because at the end of the day, this is often why a business was created (at the very least, it is often the the reason for businesses that succeed, long-term): to help solve a problem.
  3. Prioritize customer trust: As technology becomes more ingrained in the customer experience, it is important to prioritize customer trust. Companies should be transparent about how they use customer data and ensure that their technology is secure and reliable. More so, you need to show your customer that their data is being used to help them. You know this person, you’ve had the same problem as them, it’s why you and your company exist.

Overall, integrating technology into the customer experience can be a powerful tool for companies to improve their customer experience. Compelling CX demands balancing customer empathy with technology to avoid falling into the trap of what this article in HBR labelled "engineered insincerity." Technology can be used to personalize the customer experience by providing tailored recommendations, personalized messaging, and customized experiences. It can also be used to collect and analyze customer data, which can provide valuable insights into customer behavior and preferences.

The Stack

We’ve curated a list of vetted technologies (the best available in 2023) that can help you both understand and build a customer experience that will meet the demands of your customer, and beyond this, help you to understand the direction and operations behind your product or service to unlock scale and rise up in a saturated digital landscape.

folk
is the all-in-one CRM.
Folk is going beyond the simple address book: they’re reinventing contact management by turning it into a productivity tool. The all-in-one CRM. One workspace for all your relationships: Sales, Recruiting, Fundraising, Partnerships, and more.
folk
folk
folk
Features

⚙️ Centralize all your contacts in one place

🗂 Organize your contacts into groups

⚡️ Custom emailing with mail merge software

📝 Sync messaging across all your tools

🚀 Chrome extension to capture leads

💬 Leverage customisation for better emails

Ctrl
is a modern UI for your complex CRM.
Ctrl empowers sales and customer success professionals to combine data from different platforms to create their own custom workspaces. With Ctrl, learning everything about a customer and updating each platform with future steps and follow ups is super fast and easy, saving time and headaches on manual updates while never leaving a single custom dashboard.
Ctrl
Ctrl
Ctrl
Features

📊 Customer insights

☎️ Automate CRM updates

⭐️ Arrange & customize views

📃 Tasks & notes

✅ Follow-up actions

📬 Emails & calls

Plain
is the customer service tool you've always wanted.
Meet the customer service tool you've always wanted. Modern defaults, opinionated workflows and incredibly fast to use. Designed with a streamlined UI, keyboard shortcuts and an opinionated workflow. No more duplicate tickets or multiple threads. Plain gives you a single customer timeline. Chat and email out of the box. Ten minutes from signup to talking to your first customer.
Plain
Plain
Plain
Features

⚙️ Full API Access

✉️ Chat & email

💸 Payment events

🪲 Bug reports

⏰ Waitlist requests

🚀 Workflow events

✅ Global command menu

Gorgias
is the ecommerce helpdesk that turns your customer service into a profit center.
Gorgias builds a multi-channel helpdesk integrated with e-commerce merchants' back-office. It allows merchants to manage all their support from one place. It connects all business apps and all communication channels to provide support agents a unified view of their customers. It sets auto-responses to common customer requests. Gorgias helps merchants leverage support as a way to increase sales.
Gorgias
Gorgias
Gorgias
Features

📥 Centralize all communication

🤖 Automate responses

💪 Self-service & order management

📊 Live statistics & revenue reporting

💥 94 app integrations

⚙️ SSO & team management

Atlas
to give your customers superhuman support.
Atlas is a blazingly fast, modern support platform, helping identify and diagnose customer experience and interaction. Currently in beta, you can sign up and book a demo today.
Atlas
Atlas
Atlas
Features

💬 Chat, ticketing, and automated communications

📹 Session recordings

🪲 Bug tracking

⚙️ Internal tool integration

🚀 Customer Timelines

📊 Smart Insights

👉 User Journey Mapping

Customer.io
is an automated messaging platform for tech-savvy marketers.
Customer.io is more control and flexibility to craft and send data-driven emails, push notifications, in-app messages, and SMS.
Customer.io
Customer.io
Customer.io
Features

⚙️ Direct Integration with RESTful API

🚀 Third-Party Integration

🗂 Powerful Segmentation

📊 Real Time Data

⚡️ Rules-based visual workflow builder

💬 Personalised Messaging

Attio
is the data-driven CRM for modern teams.
Attio is a radically new type of CRM built from the ground up for you, the user. With Attio, you can build your CRM exactly the way you want it - all without lines of code or expensive consultants.
Attio
Attio
Attio
Features

🌐 Sync your data streams. Import, sort, and organize all your relationship data

⚙️ Build your ideal workflow. Easily design and implement the perfect workflow for you

💬 Collaborate more effectively. Share workflows, contacts, & communications in real-time

📬 Keep track of all the important conversations your team are having with intelligent communication sorting

🚀 Easily pull in data from all your favorite tools through Attio's first-class API and Zapier integration

📝 Keep track of every update and thought while working with your team with notes.

Front
is a customer communication hub that keeps teams focused on what technology can’t replace.
Front puts customer conversations at the center of a team’s attention and surrounds them with collaboration capabilities and contextual data from multiple systems.
Front
Front
Front
Features

📬 Connect every channel to your team inbox

👋 Team collaboration

☎️ Customer data placed in context

🤖 Powerful no-code automations and integrations

📊 Detailed insights & analytics

💬 Omnichannel messaging

💥 API Customization

Helpscout
is a better way to talk with your customers.
Manage all your customer conversations in one powerful platform that feels just like your inbox. Be available right where your customers need it, and give your team the collaboration, organization, and automation they need to move faster.
Helpscout
Helpscout
Helpscout
Features

💬 Live Chat

📬 Shared Inboxes

📚 Knowledge Base

📩 In-App Messaging

📊 Customer Data

🤝 Collaboration Tools

🚨 Reporting

🔗 Integrations

HubSpot
is a CRM platform that’s both powerful and easy to use.
HubSpot’s CRM platform has all the tools and integrations you need for marketing, sales, content management, and customer service. Each product in the platform is powerful alone, but the real magic happens when you use them together.
HubSpot
HubSpot
HubSpot
Features

🚀 Marketing

💸 Sales CRM

☎️ Customer service

🗂 Content management

⭐️ Operations

Drift
creates customer experiences that delight, drive pipeline, and grow customer value.
Drift’s Conversation Cloud helps your marketing, sales, and customer teams easily connect with customers through conversations that build trust and grow revenue. Give your customers that warm, personalized feeling with every conversation, day or night.
Drift
Drift
Drift
Features

💬 Live Chat & Chatbots

📊 Real-time buyer insights

📫 Video, email & phone tools

📅 Schedule meetings

🚀 Conversation Qualified Leads

🧐 Conversational analysis

🤖 Customer service automation

Intercom
is the all-in-one customer communications platform
Open a direct channel between your business and your customers that's in your product, app or website, in the moment, and on their terms.
Intercom
Intercom
Intercom
Features

💬 Chat & messages

🤖 Customizable bots

⭐️ Account-based marketing

📚 Help-centre articles

🚀 Product tours, campaigns & surveys

🔗 Apps & integrations

Bettermode
to make better relationships with your customers.
Simplify your customer experience with an all-in-one community engagement platform. Say goodbye to the hassle of multiple tools. Bettermode is all you need to engage and delight customers: a powerful, self-serve platform to help you convert, engage, and retain more customers.
Bettermode
Bettermode
Bettermode
Features

🔥 Templates

🔐 Activity feed

🎨 Customization

🌐 Moderation

🚀 Embed tools

👋 Single sign-on

Ontraport
is the sales and marketing platform for growing businesses.
Ontraport is a CRM and automation platform designed for any business that’s ready to scale, giving you all the tools you need for selling, marketing and managing a business online — in one app.
Ontraport
Ontraport
Ontraport
Features

☎️ Sales & CRM

💸 Payments

🚀 Marketing automation

🌐 No-code web apps

📝 Pages & forms

⚙️ API & integrations