Along with advancements in technology, consumer demands are ever evolving. Users have come to expect digitisation, accessibility, convenience, and speed from brands and businesses they engage with online. This should in turn influence your organisation to reconsider your customer experience (CX) strategies in order to ensure that your customers get the best possible experience every time.
You’ve probably already noticed the influx of a new wave of customers that demand instantaneous solutions, omnichannel experiences, and personalised digital journeys. This generation of customers are called the ‘Digital Natives’.
You may have heard the term ‘Digital Native’ before, but who are they and what does it actually mean?
The term was first coined by American writer, Marc Prensky in a 2001 publication where he described how younger generations were fundamentally different due to “computer games, email, the internet, cell phones, and instant messaging [being an] integral part of their lives”. Essentially, it describes Millennials and Generation Z who were born and raised in the digital era and have been using the internet and digital technology from a young age.
These groups seamlessly blend digital and physical aspects into their daily lives and while they do have similarities, Millennials and Generation Z don’t necessarily have the same experience with technology. Millennials grew up with VHS tapes, CD players, were early adopters of cell phones and quickly embraced waves of digital innovation as they happened. Whereas Generation Z were immersed from day one; they were the kids playing on iPads at restaurants, have never used dial up broadband, and their first phone was a smartphone. They don’t just embrace digital innovation, they expect it.
As Digital Natives, these generations represent a significant amount of buying power and by 2025 they’re estimated to make up 75 percent of the global workforce, making them a demographic which is hard to ignore. They are also by far the most connected, diverse, and fluid generations in history and they favour convenience, authenticity, and immediacy.
The evolution of new digital experiences and technologies has created a shift in expectations leading to a new type of customer, one who is always connected, digitally savvy, and fully aware of what they can do with technology. This creates a situation where the possibilities for businesses are equally as transformative as they are challenging, and they will need to reconsider how they provide value to their customers while meeting expectations.
Four key things that Digital Natives look for when it comes to customer experience include:
Digital Natives are unlikely to pick up the phone if they’re in need of help so instead they expect digital, mobile-optimised options for finding information and resolving problems. Ensure that your FAQ section or information hub is up to date and robust so that customers can easily access the information they need.
As mentioned above, Digital Natives favour non-voice support services such as text and instant messaging. Over 60% of Millennials would rather receive customer service support through live chat than traditional channels.
Unsurprisingly, Millennials and Generation Z are the two most connected generations when it comes to social media usage, so they tend to take their time to check out a brand’s social media presence. Roughly three out of four Generation Z’ers compare prices, read reviews, and explore different brands before they make a purchase.
These users actively seek out tailored, high-quality, and seamless experiences which meet their unique preferences and needs.
So, how can you tailor your Customer Experience strategy to Digital Natives?
Digital Natives are absolute fiends for convenience so implement multiple touch points throughout the customer journey to make it easier for customers to interact with your brand at any time. They also enjoy streamlined processes. If your customer journey involves starting at a website, moving through an app, and then finishing with an external payment portal; they’re likely to be overwhelmed and not follow through with the purchase. Giving them the ability to complete all activities within one app would make a real difference.
Digital Natives want the companies they support to stand for something. The purchase decisions of these generations are influenced by your company’s values and stances on causes that are of importance to them. So be vocal about what matters to your brand and share your morals and values.
No one likes to be put on hold, and especially not people of the generation that strive for instant gratification. So, it’s up to you to solve queries fast and speed up your digital services. That’s where mobile apps come in and give your business the ability to engage in real-time communication with customers. From fielding typical enquiries to offering live emergency support, apps allow businesses to engage with customers instantly and provide a more tailored and personalised experience. As mentioned above, making self-service support easily accessible and comprehensible will really make a difference with Digital Natives.
Digital Natives are aware of the power that technology has put in their hands and they’re always willing to leverage it. They expect to be able to initiate an interaction on one device and be able to finish it on another without having to start afresh, repeat any process, or restate their issues. Essentially, they expect a harmonious integration between website, application and physical experiences.
This isn’t our first rodeo. We’ve designed and developed customer experience strategies for a wide variety of businesses, helped them to understand their customers, and created a fully realised digital experience. We will work with you to find a strategy that aligns with your business needs and develop a solution that your customers will love.
We don’t bite, so get in touch with us to find out how we can help your business.