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Zendesk Suite

Zendesk is a cloud-based help desk management solution offering customizable tools to build customer service portal, knowledge base and online communities. The solution offers a customizable front-end portal, live chat features an...Read more about Zendesk Suite

4.4 (3887 reviews)

2 recommendations

Pointerpro

Pointerpro is your platform to easily create assessments that allow your respondents to download personalized reports immediately. The innovative tool allows you to provide users with tailored advice at scale. This allows everyone...Read more about Pointerpro

4.6 (244 reviews)

2 recommendations

SurveySparrow

SurveySparrow is a cloud-based customer experience solution that enables businesses of all sizes to create engaging feedback surveys. It comes with a centralized dashboard, which allows users to import contacts and organize them i...Read more about SurveySparrow

4.4 (109 reviews)

1 recommendations

HappyOrNot

HappyOrNot is an easy-to-use, engaging customer feedback solution that helps companies optimize their operations based on real-time, high-volume data. Our solution is made up of three core elements: HappyOrNot Smileys, Analytics, ...Read more about HappyOrNot

4.9 (18 reviews)

1 recommendations

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CXInfinity

CxInfinity is a contact center solution provider for omnichannel engagement. The system delivers 150+ deployments & 98.7% customer retention rate, and over 70 3rd party integrations. CXInfinity offers scalable and flexible solutio...Read more about CXInfinity

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1 recommendations

Mailchimp

Mailchimp is a web-based marketing automation service with millions of users worldwide. The application allows users to share newsletters on various social networks and track customer engagements. The application provides tools to...Read more about Mailchimp

SurveyMonkey

SurveyMonkey is a cloud-based survey tool that helps users create, send and analyze surveys. Users can email surveys to respondents and post them on their websites and social media profiles to increase response rate. Users can run...Read more about SurveyMonkey

Zoho CRM

Zoho CRM is a cloud-based business management platform that caters to businesses of all sizes. It offers sales and marketing automation tools with helpdesk, analytics and customer support functions. Zoho CRM helps users respo...Read more about Zoho CRM

Vantage Circle

Vantage Circle is an award-winning employee engagement and recognition platform. We help HR professionals drive Holistic Employee Engagement through our products, namely, Rewards and Recognition, Feedback, Exclusive Perks, and Cor...Read more about Vantage Circle

Hootsuite

Social media is a wild place to do business. That’s why thousands of brands rely on Hootsuite’s tools and expertise to bring order to the chaos. Launch brilliant social campaigns, deliver 5-star social commerce experiences, and ma...Read more about Hootsuite

Freshdesk

Freshdesk is a cloud-based customer service software that helps businesses provide effortless service across every customer touchpoint. Freshdesk empowers businesses to monitor customer conversations across email, phone, chat, soc...Read more about Freshdesk

Pipedrive

Pipedrive is a web-based Sales CRM and pipeline management solution that enables businesses to plan their sales activities and monitor deals. Built using activity-based selling methodology, Pipedrive streamlines every action invol...Read more about Pipedrive

Zoho Desk

Zoho Desk is a cloud-based help desk solution from Zoho Corporation, catering to businesses of all sizes. Key features include management of customer support tickets, a customer support portal, contract management and report creat...Read more about Zoho Desk

Jotform

Jotform is a cloud-based form automation solution that enables users to publish online forms and record customer responses. It helps users to generate leads, collect order payments, conduct customer surveys, manage job application...Read more about Jotform

LiveAgent

LiveAgent is an online Help Desk solution for e-commerce businesses at the small and midsize levels. The platform offers live chat application, ticket management, online self-service portals, and change and license management, all...Read more about LiveAgent

Miro

Miro is a visual workspace for innovation that enables distributed teams of any size to dream, design, and build the future together. Miro enables distributed teams to come together to synthesize information, clarify complex idea...Read more about Miro

Trustpilot

Trustpilot is a customer experience management solution that helps businesses send review invitations, share reviews, manage ratings, track feedback and more on a centralized platform. It allows administrators to configure rules t...Read more about Trustpilot

Intercom

Intercom is the only complete Customer Service solution that provides a seamless customer experience across automation and human support, delivering increased customer satisfaction while reducing costs. We're building a future whe...Read more about Intercom

SurveyLegend

SurveyLegend is a cloud-based survey solution for individuals and businesses of all sizes. The solution enables users to create mobile-friendly surveys, manage survey questionnaires, customize questions and track responses. S...Read more about SurveyLegend

TeamSupport

TeamSupport is a robust customer support solution designed to improve customer satisfaction, simplify workflows, and make agents’ lives easier. We empower teams of all sizes to consolidate channels, shorten time to resolution, col...Read more about TeamSupport

Buyers Guide

Last Updated: March 16, 2023

Every time your customer engages with your company in any way, they're having a customer experience. This includes every touch point and interaction across the full customer life cycle: digital encounters, product experiences, interactions with employees, and even word of mouth chatter from other customers.

Research and advisory firm Gartner defines customer experience (CX) as "the customer's perceptions and related feelings caused by the one-off and cumulative effect of interactions with a supplier's employees, systems, channels, or products." (Full article available to Gartner clients.)

The question is: how much control do you have over those experiences? And—crucially—do you understand your customers' needs and preferences well enough to cater to them?

Every customer has their own mix of expectations, needs, and tolerance levels. Customers reward businesses that deliver on their preferences and will abandon those who don't. Given these high stakes, businesses are turning to CX software to better understand their customers and how to deliver the experiences they want.

In this Buyer's Guide, we'll help you understand the following:

What is customer experience software?

Common features of customer experience software

What type of buyer are you?

Benefits of customer experience software

Key considerations

Market trends to understand

What is customer experience software?

Customer experience software is closely related to customer relationship management (CRM) software, as well as customer feedback and customer service solutions. Where CX software differs is its focus on leveraging customer insight to create actionable improvements in the customer journey. This CX transformation can happen at the individual or organizational levels.

At the individual level, CX software distinguishes individual customers from your amorphous group of “customers," defining them instead by their personal needs and preferences. In other words, it helps you define your customers as they want to be treated: as individuals.

CX software can track individual customer behavior and preferences, flag individual customers at risk of churning, leverage predictive analytics to anticipate behavior, and suggest more personalized experiences for a customer or segment of customers.

At the organizational level, CX software can track patterns at key touch points throughout the customer journey, identifying pain points or problem areas internally. This could include, for example, a comparison of customer satisfaction scores between service channels or departments. By identifying weak areas within the organization, CX professionals can work toward company procedure changes and improve the customer experience externally.

Net-Promoter-Score-impact-analysis-in-CloudCherry-software

Net Promoter Score impact analysis in CloudCherry software (Source)

Common features of customer experience software

Customer experience software typically offers some or all of the following functionality:

Predictive analytics

Uses artificial intelligence, predictive modeling, or machine learning capabilities to provide deeper insights and/or suggested actions for how to improve the customer experience.

Survey management

Allows users to design, schedule, and conduct surveys, polls, and questionnaires, as well as to collect and analyze survey data.

Data analytics

Collects and presents data in order to analyze and report key findings on CX performance indicators.

Text analytics

Extracts meaningful CX data from text-based interactions using natural language processing or sentiment analysis to automatically quantify and categorize text data.

Multi-channel

A broad group of applications designed to monitor the performance of and/or communicate through various channels. This could email, live chat, social media, and more.

Closed loop/ticketing

Tracks customer service interactions or flags customer issues and automates the issue resolution process. Creates tickets to assign agents to resolve customer issues.

Journey mapping

Allows the user to visualize and customize customer journeys, or analyze customer satisfaction at specific touch points along the customer journey

What type of buyer are you?

Different companies have different approaches to CX management. One of the most significant factors affecting a company's strategy is its size and organizational structure.

Enterprise businesses: Large institutions and multinational corporations are ideal candidates for the most robust and full-featured CX platforms, due in part to the complexity of their internal organizations and the scale of their customer bases. Full CX suites can monitor customer journey changes across the organization and facilitate personalized experiences for many customers simultaneously, but are fairly pricey compared to narrower software options.

Midsize corporations: Midsize businesses can usually get by with less comprehensive CX management tools, so long as they can clearly identify all business units that impact the customer experience. Many midsize companies are finding that a certain degree of cross-department cooperation is needed to support an improved CX. Management tools that monitor interactions by sales, marketing and service departments can quickly identify internal inefficiencies that lead to a poor CX.

Small businesses: Small businesses rarely need the comprehensive CX management suites used by enterprises. Instead, they often opt for channel-specific or function-specific applications. They might, for example, choose a text analytics tool to monitor their live chat and email interactions. Alternatively, they might choose a single survey tool to gather feedback from their customers on the phone, in follow-up emails or when browsing a self-service page online.

Benefits of customer experience software

While we've covered some benefits of CX software in the sections above, here are some of the most notable ones:

Better understand customers' journeys: CX software can collect and organize customer feedback at specific points throughout the customer journey, providing insight into moments that are going well and moments that need improvement.

Close the loop on customer issues: Some CX solutions offer "closed-loop" case management functionality. This means that when customers provide negative survey feedback or raise an issue, the software automates the issue resolution process, usually by creating a support ticket so staff can act quickly.

Break down silos by consolidating customer data: Most CX software is built with integrations in mind so that departments across an organization can get a deep, unified look into the customer experience. This could include operational, transactional, attitudinal, or experiential customer data.

Personalize the customer experience: Some CX solutions offer predictive analytics capabilities that facilitate individually personalized experiences, based on past customer feedback or behavior.

Explore qualitative customer feedback in-depth: Some CX software offer text analytics tools that can quickly analyze open-ended, qualitative customer comments, such as from surveys, reviews, social media, emails, or chat logs. These tools will generally code and group comments by topic, theme, or sentiment, giving you a big picture view of qualitative data.

Key considerations for purchasing customer experience software

When purchasing new software, it’s always important to take note of a few things during the buying process:

  • Your business’s needs: Before you decide to buy a customer experience software, you should assess your organization’s needs as well as your end goal for implementing such software. Do you want to monitor and improve the performance of your customer-facing systems? Or you want to find details on a specific area concerning customer satisfaction?

    If you are looking to monitor the customer journey through your sales funnel and improve customer experiences by facilitating personalized experiences, then opt for a fully-featured CX suite with customizable surveys, customer feedback collection, and management capabilities. This will help you gain deeper insights into customers’ likes and dislikes. If you have concerns about your customers’ experience and need to dig in deeper to get more data regarding their experiences, purchase decisions, and interactions, then go for a software with narrower functionalities. This can include anomaly detection, built-in text analytics, and knowledge management.

  • Integration with other systems: In order to support you with information on prospective and existing customers, integration between your new software and your existing systems is important. Be sure to check with your prospective vendor to make sure that they integrate with the systems you already have in place, such as customer relationship management (CRM) software, marketing software, customer service and help desk software, and product analytics software.

Market trends to understand

As CX software fragments, know what you're looking for. The CX software market overlaps heavily with related software such as CRM, customer service, customer feedback, and customer engagement—this results in a fragmented landscape. According to Gartner, as the benefits of a customer-centric approach become more well known, some vendors from related software markets are branding their products as CX solutions, which may not have full-featured CX functionality (full content available to Gartner clients).

Businesses looking for a full-featured solution will be pleased with all that a CX suite has to offer. At the same time, CX is broad, as it encompasses any and all types of customer experiences. In this way, businesses that want to focus on a particular type of customer experience or that need a specific, narrow feature set should look at CX software as well the closest related market.