As digital platforms work to provide more immediate on-platform shopping options, minimizing the steps required to make a purchase, consumer expectations are also rising. Now, many shoppers will simply click away from purchasing processes which force them into extra effort - in fact, according to Facebook, 80% of consumers say that the experience a business provides is just as crucial as its goods or services.
That's a key stat to keep in mind, and the focus of a new report from Facebook which looks at customer friction points along the path to purchase. For the report, Facebook collaborated with Boston Consulting Group to analyze friction points, and their associated costs, across industries in the Asia Pacific region.
And there are some important findings of note - here are some of the highlights.
As per the report:
"Boston Consulting Group estimates that the aggregate dollar amount of the cost of friction businesses suffer in APAC alone can reach $325 billion (US) each year."
That seems crazy, right? That seems like a huge amount that could, potentially, be lost to inefficient practices - but when you actually look at the insights, it starts to make sense.
For example, in the below graphic, Facebook lists the main reasons that consumers have noted as pain points within the Discovery phase.
You can see how these lead to lost opportunities - and this is just at the first stage. In the full report, Facebook has included similar listings for each element, with full rundowns on the key issues consumers face.
These are key points to consider in your digital connection process - whether you sell goods online or not. Of course, the insights are more focused on those selling products, but the challenges reported relate to any business website, including load times, discovery challenges and customer service issues.
But more than just highlighting the key problems, Facebook has also provided solutions. In the accompanying 'Zero Friction Solutions' guide, Facebook outlines all the key issues in each phase, and notes how, utilizing Facebook's tools, brands can address them.
Logically, and as noted, these are Facebook-focussed, but the proposed ideas are relevant - and even if you don't want to use Facebook's tools, the issues and potential solutions do provide some good prompts to consider your own customer pathways.
There's a heap of info in the full report, including a new dedicated webpage and a downloadable PDF of the full insights.
As Facebook notes:
"The future belongs to businesses who remove friction for their customers."
Given rising consumer expectations, and the friction points noted in this report, its hard to argue with that logic, and these insights could provide you with the impetus you need to improve your business process.
You can check out Facebook's full 'Zero Friction Future' report here.