For businesses in today’s climate, being able to rapidly manage and deliver accessible, high-impact digital experiences is extremely important. Yet many companies are faltering, according to a new study from Crownpeak and market research firm Vanson Bourne. In fact, nearly 3 in 4 businesses (73%) believe improvements are required to the speed and agility of their online content management and digital experience delivery.
This new study explores “Digital Experience Management” – that is, how companies manage content, develop experiences and deploy them to the digital channels where their customers want to engage. The study includes data from 400 marketing and IT decision-makers at companies across industries, who participated in an online survey in November and December 2020.
“Today, having a digital-first business strategy is all about meeting your customers where they are,” said Lacey Ford, chief marketing officer, Crownpeak. “With many in-person channels still suspended or curtailed, digital experiences are often the primary way that companies and customers interact. That means there is increased pressure to serve up digital experiences quickly and easily – before customer needs or corporate priorities change, and before your message becomes obsolete. In addition to being timely, it’s important that the experiences also be accessible, engaging, compliant and consistent across channels.”
The Need for Speed
More than 9 in 10 respondents (94%) say speed and agility are “very” or “extremely” important to digital experience management and delivery. However, there was a notable gap between how long respondents think it should take their organizations to implement digital presence changes – versus how long it actually takes. For example:
- Building and launching a new content page using an existing template/layout should take 2 weeks, according to respondents. Yet in reality and on average, it takes their companies 4.
- Launching a microsite with new design and creative should take 3 weeks, respondents believe. It really takes their organizations 5.
What’s thwarting companies from reaching their desired level of agility? Marketers and IT professionals don’t always see eye-to-eye on this. They cite the following impediments:
- Organizational processes – IT: 46%; Marketers: 34% (40% of all respondents)
- Slow implementation of digital experience management solution – IT: 37%; Marketers: 42% (40% total)
- Too much time and budget spent on maintaining infrastructure – IT: 32%; Marketers: 46% (39% total)
- Hard to use technology – IT: 23%; Marketers: 32% (28% total)
What is clear, though, is that increased agility brings increased business benefits. Respondents believe that improving their organization’s speed of digital experience delivery would result in, on average, a 38% uplift in revenue.
As companies manage and deploy online experiences, they face a variety of other challenges, spanning people, process and technology. In fact, nearly 9 in 10 businesses (87%) face limitations with their current method of managing digital experiences.
Some challenges include:
- Consistency isn’t constant: More than 1 in 3 companies (35%) struggle to keep content consistent with brand messaging.
- Out-of-date: 1 in 3 (33%) also struggle to keep their software up-to-date with the latest features available.
- Dependent on development: 31% say their web content management system (CMS) or digital experience platform (DXP) requires specialists to operate or develop on it. Development teams spend 55% of their time, on average, maintaining the company’s current CMS or DXP, and 45% creating new digital experiences.
- Ongoing expenses: 28% say their solutions are expensive to maintain.
- IT involvement: 29% of respondents say digital experience management and delivery relies too much on the IT department – with IT teams feeling that marketing leans on them more than marketing perceives. For example, 50% of IT decision-makers note that marketing asks them to update CMS and DXP software to the latest version; only 33% of marketers say they request this of IT. And 47% of IT decision-makers state that marketing asks them to customize software to meet organizational needs; only 33% of marketers report requesting this.
Overall, 82% of respondents agree that having to wait for IT when working on new digital experiences is one of the most likely causes to delay marketing’s business impact.
To deliver digital experiences better and more quickly, organizations say they need more support from their technology providers. Three-quarters of respondents (75%) note that the support their company receives from its CMS or DXP vendor could be improved.
“While organizations today face challenges related to digital experience management, the good news is that cost and technical barriers continue to drop,” Ford said. “For example, as companies move away from older, ‘monolithic’ systems, they are taking advantage of software-as-a-service (SaaS) to eliminate infrastructure, automate upgrades and lower total cost of ownership. Flexible architectures and digital quality management technology also help create scalable, accessible and secure omnichannel experiences. Advances like these enable companies to move faster and create more – no matter what device or audience they’re serving.”
Digital Experience Management Wishlist
As companies seek to connect with their customers conveniently and in a high-impact way, the survey data underscores the importance of digital experience management. In fact, 65% of respondents would like to see investment in new digital experiences if funds currently allocated to infrastructure could be freed up.
When selecting a CMS or DXP, respondents prioritize customer support (48%), the speed of the solution/speed afforded in creating new digital experiences (48%), integration with legacy systems (45%), time to implement (45%) and ease of use (44%).
Ideal features and capabilities include:
- Cost-effectiveness for implementation and upgrades – 35%
- Compliant with data privacy rules and regulations – 33%
- Kept current with regular, seamless updates – 32%
- Capable of customizable workflows and automated content governance – 31%
More Survey Information
For more information about Crownpeak and Vanson Bourne’s Digital Experience Management study, please check out the following resources:
- Join the webinar: Crownpeak will discuss the survey data and its implications in a webinar on March 18, from 2-3 p.m. ET. To attend the complimentary event, please register here.
- Download the report: Read more about the survey findings in the full report, available at http://bit.ly/crownpeak-dxm-survey.
- View the infographic: An infographic with salient survey data is available at http://bit.ly/dxm-infographic.
Image licensed by: Pixabay.com