7 Critical Success Factors to Build a Great Customer Experience Online
The Manufacturer Omnichannel Index
Thursday, December 9, 2021
by: KYKLO in partnership with Distribution Strategy Group

Section: Press Releases

Providing a great customer experience (CX) on your website is the cost of being in the game today, whether your top goal is a shopping or a transaction site -- or both.

This has become even more critical as both distributors and manufacturers accelerate their adoption of ecommerce. Distribution Strategy Group recently completed the 2021 State of Manufacturing Sales Channels study. In that research, we found the channel is shifting away from traditional distribution (manufacturers predict a decrease of nearly 20% in use of that channel over the next five years) and moving toward the use of digital sellers such as marketplaces and pure digital distributors, an 80%+ increase.

To gain more insight into ecommerce adoption by manufacturers, we sampled more than 4,000 manufacturer websites across different SICs. The graphic below shows selected two-digit SICs that had at least 10% of sampled firms with ecommerce.

Our annual State of eCommerce research, conducted in early 2021, indicated the No. 1 operational objective for both distributors and manufacturers in adopting ecommerce is improving the ease of use and customer experience (CX) in both the shopping and buying process.

A recent survey by Search Engine Journal asked SEO professionals what the top areas of focus would be in the next year. The top response was User Experience (UX or CX for Customer Experience).

Many factors go into having a great customer experience. In this whitepaper, we dive into the components that drive CX, show you how many manufacturers are in the good-to-great rating, and provide examples of what a great CX looks like.

The Manufacturer Omnichannel Index

KYKLO surveyed a select group of 110 of the largest manufacturers in the electrical and automation sectors. The discovery? Manufacturers range from great to dismally ill-prepared for the future.

There are seven critical success factors comprising the index:

Share of Voice – the SEO component of the manufacturer’s website. Can a customer hear your message on an internet where hundreds of other manufacturers seem to be shouting at the top of their lungs?

The Home Page – Does your front door portray what one might expect from your company?

Discovery – How many searches and clicks does it take to get to a product? Can users search for keywords and specifications and receive search suggestions along the way? Are you able to narrow down and filter search results based on technical attributes? Is it even possible to find the right product at all, without knowing the exact (and complicated) product SKU code ahead of time?

Advanced Selection – Once on the website, can customers find precisely what they need? Are there product selectors, configurators, and other tools to help a confused customer make the right choice?

Product Content – Does your website provide all the data needed for a selection? Are there pictures, the right specifications, and electrical/mechanical properties to really make the right selection for the specific applications the product typically works in?

Offer Completeness, Pricing and Inventory – This measures whether the manufacturer has all of its products shown on its website. Are all products findable via search and filtering or only pre-determined categories? Are all newly launched products, and most importantly, all price list commercialized products on the website? In addition, does the manufacturer show price or lead time/inventory availability?

Conversion – Does your site encourage a customer to buy? Can the customer pursue a purchase on your website, or be guided to your distributors’ sites? Why should they select you over one of the other guys?

The data compiled applies algorithms and includes the expertise of KYKLO’s team of Senior Data Engineers. This group has significant experience in developing enriched product data for millions of SKUs in the electrical and automation space. They know products, what it takes to attract customers, what engineers search for in their applications, and the environment needed to drive conversions.

KYKLO understands the nuances of ecommerce and has assisted distributors in pushing their efforts forward around the globe. KYKLO also assists manufacturers in creating, maintaining and deploying their content, both on KYKLO-powered stores for distributors, and via a syndication offering.

This whitepaper delves into each of these factors.

Read the full whitepaper here!