How to Build a Successful Mobile Customer Experience

April 29, 2020
Aug 11, 2022
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How to Build a Successful Mobile Customer Experience

With mobile usage at a record high, now is an ideal time to invest in your mobile customer experience. Whether you’re looking to improve an existing mobile experience or build a new one, mobile is positioned to pay high dividends for your business during and after the pandemic.

But how do you get started? Mobile development can be an expensive investment. How can you ensure that investment pays off for your business and customers? 

The Three-Legged Stool Approach to Mobile Customer Experience

Getting mobile right means approaching the problem from a three-pronged perspective. While business stakeholders within your company may fund a mobile customer project - and their input is critical to success - that isn’t the only viewpoint to consider.

At 1904labs, we help our clients approach problems with the analogy of a three-legged stool. This approach focuses on three areas: your business users, your customers (the humans who will use the mobile solution), and your technology team. If you over- or under-emphasize one of these areas, the stool cannot stand. By balancing the perspectives of these three stakeholders—and considering the various tradeoffs—you ensure that the solution meets business challenges and expectations, fulfills the needs of your customers, and fits with technical requirements. This ensures the solution is sustainable, effective, and scalable.

Three legged stool for mobile customer solutions

Before designing and building a mobile solution, you need to truly dig into and study the problem. In our HCDAgile process, we call this step Discovery, which means going through research and analysis of the needs of the business, your customers, and the required technologies.

The Benefits of a Holistic Perspective

Incorporating each of these areas into the upfront planning for your mobile experience develops a holistic perspective that you can build on. This foundation holds a variety of benefits.

From the business perspective, you:

  • Ensure that your planned mobile solution meets the true business challenges and needs
  • Clearly define the goals behind the project to effectively address those them as you design and build
  • Understand and document the objectives of your business stakeholders (and ultimately, the outcomes those funding your project want to see) 

From the customer perspective, you: 

  • Get a first-hand understanding of your customers’ challenges and needs based on fact and observation rather than what you anticipate they may want
  • Gain insight into your customers’ behaviors to tailor your mobile solution to meet them where they are and give them what they expect and need from you
  • Develop a mobile solution your customers will want to adopt, and ultimately, love to use

From the technological perspective, you: 

  • Ensure you build a solution that can scale to meet not just present but also future needs
  • Leverage technologies that integrate and are supported by your current technical environment
  • Create a mobile customer experience that your existing teams and skill sets can maintain and enhance over time

A Way to Provide Measurable Results

A thorough analysis of these three areas provides a strong understanding from which to build a mobile customer solution that meets needs across the board. But that’s not the only benefit. Another big payoff of this upfront Discovery process is an understanding of where you are now. You gain an understanding of your current state—without a new or improved mobile experience—internally from the perspective of your business stakeholders, externally from your customers’ perspective, and in terms of your current technological capabilities and constraints.

Without a current state assessment, it may appear that customers are happier or business goals are achieved after your app launches. Instead, with a baseline, you have a way to show measurable success once your new mobile experience is implemented. That measurement gives you confidence that you are truly achieving your goals. Only then can you deliver key metrics related to your mobile solution like downloads, customer retention or expansion, user engagement, among other business-specific key performance indicators.

A Foundation for Success

A mobile customer project must balance all three legs of the stool - business, customer and technology - in order to be successful. While it’s easy to overemphasize a single area -  especially technology - it comes at the expense of the other two. But a great mobile customer solution takes a balanced approach in all three areas in order to deliver an experience that is sustainable, effective, and scalable. Focusing equally on these areas ensures that your mobile customer solution will meet your internal and external goals and, in the end, deliver a return on your investment.

Read our first post in this series on why mobile is more important to business success than ever.