Sydney, 9 May 2016

When asked to describe their customer experience (CX) maturity, only a third (33%) of organisations based in Australia and New Zealand said they are ‘very’ or ‘quite’ advanced. The remainder admit to being ‘not very advanced’ (53%) or ‘immature’ (14%) with regards to CX maturity. This is a key finding from the Customer Experience Maturity in Australia and New Zealand report, published by Econsultancy in partnership with Epsilon.

The research, based on a survey of 350 marketing, digital and ecommerce professionals from Australia and New Zealand, explores the differences between the two groups (‘advanced’ and ‘not very advanced’ or ‘immature’) in order to surface the different techniques and approaches adopted by those who are successful at delivering great customer experiences.

The report looks at the extent to which organisations in the region focus on the customer, how well they understand the customer journey, how customer experience budget is allocated, how return on investment is measured and what the future of customer experience initiatives looks like.

A key capability required to provide excellent customer experience is around having integrated customer touchpoints which can be centrally managed and optimised. However, the research revealed that only 5% organisations achieved the ‘holy grail’ of customer experience: seamless integration of channels which ‘allows exploitation of opportunities’. Mature organisations are more than twice as likely (50% vs. 20%) to have seamless integration or adopt an integrated approach to their channels as the rest.

Though email platforms and customer relationship management (CRM) systems are the most popular technologies used for customer experience marketing initiatives, mature companies are far more likely to use a wider range of technologies. Organisations who rate themselves as ‘advanced’ in terms of CX maturity are twice as likely to use cross-device tracking (18% vs. 9%), more than twice as likely to use mobile/push notifications (26% vs. 12%) and nearly four times more likely to use beacons/geo-targeting (15% vs. 4%).

When it comes to barriers preventing companies from improving the customer experience, the complexity of customer experience / number of different touchpoints was most commonly mentioned, with nearly one in three (31%) indicating this is a significant issue.

Additionally, nearly 45% more companies who rate themselves as ‘advanced’ consider this as a significant barrier compared to the rest (39% vs. 27%). It seems that as companies become more sophisticated with CX, the complexities involved in improving it become more pronounced.

Michael Kustreba, Managing Director of Epsilon, Asia Pacific, commented: “The path to customer experience maturity can be a winding one, and it takes team work to make it happen. The good news is that there are proven methodologies organisations can adopt to help them with these challenges.”

Jefrey Gomez, Managing Director, Asia Pacific at Econsultancy, said: “This research reveals that the complexities of delivering a relevant and consistent customer experience across all channels and touchpoints are significant. However, forward-looking organisations are making strides by focusing on three key ingredients: technology, data and ownership.”

Other findings from the report include:

-) Half of companies in the region have at least an ‘intermediate’ understanding of the customer journey and had succeeded in piecing together at least part of the customer journey. The other half either have no understanding (6%) of the customer journey or are at a beginner level (44%).

-) A third (33%) of marketers rate their companies’ ability to make improvements and changes based on insights generated by analysis of customer data and feedback as ‘good’ or ‘excellent’, but one in five (20%) indicate their abilities in this area are ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’. Advanced organisations are nearly five times more likely to rate themselves as ‘excellent’ or ‘good’ than the rest (60% vs. 21%).

-) Marketers report that only 7% of companies in the region have a single, dedicated budget for understanding the customer journey, while an additional 27% have a dedicated budget split across different departments.

Get this report

The full report is available on the Econsultancy website here: https://econsultancy.com/reports/customer-experience-maturity-in-australia-and-new-zealand/.

The report is available to Econsultancy subscribers. For more information about this report, contact:

Monica Savut, Senior Research Manager, Econsultancy
monica.savut AT econsultancy.com
+44 (0) 207 269 1450

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About Epsilon

Epsilon is a global leader in creating connections between people and brands. An all-encompassing global marketing company, we harness the power of rich data, ground-breaking technologies, engaging creative and transformative ideas to get the results our clients require.

Recognised by Ad Age as the #1 World CRM/Direct Marketing Network, #1 U.S. Digital-Agency Network and #1 U.S. Agency from All Disciplines, Epsilon employs over 7,000 associates in 70 offices worldwide. Epsilon is an Alliance Data company.

Epsilon International is an operating unit of Epsilon, with local offices in Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Singapore, U.K., France, Germany and Ireland.

For more information, visit epsilon.com, follow us on Twitter @EpsilonAPAC or email apac-info@epsilon.com.

Published on: 12:00AM on 9th May 2016