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As consumer expectations have grown, the marketplace for a digital experience platform (DXP) has grown with them, and leaders are asking themselves -- does my company need to reach a certain level of maturity before investing in a DXP partner? When is the right time?

In our experience at Episerver, we’ve seen many companies, both large and small, that were ready to adopt a full-blown DXP, with solutions for content, intelligence, digital marketing and ecommerce. But we’ve also seen companies that weren’t ready for the full platform, but were ready to start growing into one.

We’ve worked with expanding financial services firms that wanted to scale new products, but needed to quickly communicate with their employees about how to support those products. We’ve worked with industrial suppliers who needed to rapidly equip their customers with the ability to evaluate COVID-19 safety products. And we’ve helped recently-merged information services firms create an engaging experience that features their newly integrated product offering.

In each of these cases, our customers were able to pick up just some parts of our DXP, and customize them as their strategy and requirements changed. That’s the beauty of the platform-as-a-service approach. You don’t have to have all the answers now, because the platform is equipped to grow and change with your business.

As you evaluate the needs of your business, here are three questions to ask yourself. If the answer to any of these three is yes, it might be time to adopt a DXP, or start laying the foundations for one.

1. Does your experience include multiple digital touchpoints?

Whether as customers or employees, we are now experiencing a lot of the world through the screens of our devices. For companies, that has meant expanding the number of digital channels they use to reach people. As the saying goes: “You’ve got to meet people where they are.”

In this increasingly virtualized world, companies are in turn being challenged to elevate their ability to personalize, use AI, and deliver content to create an integrated customer journey. Upping your game in any one of these areas could be the foundation you build your future DXP on.

Key takeaway 1

If your team is navigating multiple assets on multiple platforms, a DXP architecture is critical for seamlessly driving dynamic content that’s personalized, AI-driven and continuously optimizing. In a world that changes by the minute, enterprises are often responsible for building and propping up microsites in days (even hours) -- and DXP provides a simple, sophisticated mechanism that removes the typical pain points that can affect your IT team, or that come from working with an outdated IT vendor.

2. Is your buyer journey as personalized as your products?

You might be providing a product or service that’s perfectly attuned to customer needs, but it won’t matter if you’re selling it via a clunky, one-size-fits-all digital experience. If you’re a marketer, especially at a company that is constantly creating better and more customized products, you’ve got to make sure your digital experience is keeping pace. And even if you feel like you’re playing catch-up with the rest of your company, it’s never too late to start learning about your customer’s ecommerce journey, from how they search for your products and ultimately make a transaction. Every new piece of customer data you have is a clue to what your DXP might look like in the future.

Key takeaway 2

The manner in which we behave digitally is constantly changing. Having old, clunky functionalities like an outdated Content Management System (CMS) often means a sub-par customer experience — which ultimately results in you losing that customer, possibly for good. Building a DXP is the only way to truly stay ahead of the game. Instead of re-inventing the wheel every few years, why not start your digital transformation by building an infrastructure that can grow with you--and even inform how you grow as you build it?

3. Do you have more use cases than you know what to do with?

As your use cases grow, the number of assets you’ll need to manage those use cases will increase as well. This complexity is necessary, but can get out of hand quickly, especially for businesses that are trying to reach new types of customers. As if that weren’t enough, you want the interactions associated with each use case to be consistent in look and feel across all touchpoints. The sooner you put a system in place for automatically keeping track of all this while the use cases are still manageable, the sooner you’ll be laying a foundation for rapid growth when it’s needed.

Key takeaway 3

Conventional wisdom assumes that smaller, emerging brands don’t need DXPs because their operation isn’t sophisticated enough to warrant it. But the mid-size organizations that adopt systems that can solve for greater complexity in the future will be the ones that can scale quickest.

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