I recently attended a talk by Matthew Poepsel of Gomez. Matthew was talking to a small gathering of senior managers involved with online in the insurance and banking sectors.
Matthew’s premise: Use experience is make or break for Financial Services web channels. You can infer a couple of things from that premise. The first: Matthew is American (make or break? c’mon…). The second: Matthew is absolutely right. With the vast majority of your customers only ever experiencing your brand through their use of your website, their user experience is your only brand. Give them a good experience and they’ll keep buying your products and recommending them to others. Give them a bad experience and see them drop you like a hot potato (I can write American as well).
He goes on to say that your user experience faces a number of challenges:
- Environmental: advances of existing competitors, new entrants and escalating user expectations
- Organizational: Business/IT alignment issues, SLA misalignment, complex value networks and matrix organisations
- Technical: IT legacy, growing application/infrastructure complexity, Web 2.0 and third-party services integration
In this climate, Matthew outlined a successful approach to ensure a great customer experience, and with it assured business success. Simply put, his approach
boils down to:
- Start with the right objectives, all of: deliver a great user experience, reduce service management costs and improve lifecycle management
- Align for maximum effectiveness: communication, collaboration, optimization; shared goals and metrics, transparency and trust
- Evolve over time: start small and plan for continuous improvement
Do all this, put the customer at the centre of everything you do and success awaits.
On a second part of this post I’ll go into detail on the 10 ways Financial Services can win online.