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CX vs UX: What’s the Difference?

October 19, 2019 |
Brand & Identity, Design, UX, Web Design
CX vs UX

CX vs UX: User experience or UX is a well-known term. Designers, even non-designers, are well versed with the meaning of UX. But, have you heard of the term CX? It’s not as commonly used as its counterpart – UX, but is soon growing in popularity. CX or customer experience is often mistaken to be the same as UX. However, the truth of the matter is that both these terms are fundamentally different and need to be treated as two separate entities. 

It all starts with how we address and define our clientele. Our users are our customers and vice versa. That’s where we start believing that user experience is similar to customer experience. So let’s clear this confusion once and for all. Let’s understand CX vs UX.

User Experience

The concept of user experience is specifically connected to your product; be it the app, software, or website. The experience of users while interacting with that product is user experience.

The design, interface, usability, navigation, visual hierarchy, information architecture, etc. are all contributors to the user experience. It can either be positive or negative for the product’s users. 

Similarly, UX design is the process of designing products that are intuitive, easy, enjoyable to use, and solve problems. The aim is to develop something that solves user problems in the simplest and most user-friendly manner possible. Success rate, error rate, task time, click to completion and abandonment rate are some of the metrics used to measure UX.

Read about UX trends of 2019

Customer Experience

Customer experience, on the other hand, is a much broader concept. It encompasses all the interactions a user has with your brand and not just your product or service. CX interactions occur across multiple touchpoints, like your advertising, marketing materials, social media channels, pricing, sales process, customer service, and your actual product. 

Customer experience is concerned with customers’ perceptions of the organization and its services as a whole, not just the usability and functionality of its products. Overall satisfaction, Net Promoter Score (NPS) and loyalty are some of the metrics that define CX.

CX vs UX

CX vs UX: The above image clearly explains that UX is a subset of CX. User experience is the experience your customers have with your product, whereas customer experience is the experience those users have with your brand as a whole.

Importance of UX and CX

Both UX and CX are equally important in today’s world. Overall customer satisfaction is no longer dependent only on the quality of the product or service; it goes far beyond that. The experience and process of buying must be a satisfying one. Not just that, even the after-sales service and support plays a crucial role in setting the brand image.

Studies reveal that more than one-third of consumers walk away from a brand they love after one bad experience, and more than half of the consumers do the same after two bad experiences. Consumers are willing to pay more for a better experience, and this fact needs to get its due importance.

The good UX design is important because users will decide within just a few seconds whether your app, software or website is worth their time or not. On the other hand, good CX is important because it goes beyond the usability and functionality of your product, and serves as a key differentiator in a competitive market. 

Both CX and UX are independent, and therefore there can be scenarios where either one of them is good. For example – Good UX and bad CX, or, bad UX and good CX. Let’s understand this with two scenarios:

1. Good UX and bad CX

Tom wants to buy a music system. He goes onto an e-commerce portal. The online store has a fantastic UI and UX. The search engine is accurate and helps Tom to reach to his desired models within no time. He compares a few models and selects the best-suited one for him. The checkout process is also seamless. Within a few clicks, Tom selected a payment method and made the payment. Great!! His new music system is on its way.

But, when he received the package, he was unpleasantly surprised. The packaging was awful, and he received the wrong product. The model which he selected and the one that was delivered were completely different. He rang the customer support and was pushed from pillar to post before he could reach the correct department. The team was not able to track his order and told him that he would receive a call back within 12 hours. No phone call for two days. He got a call on the third day and was advised to send back the music system at his own expense, then only the replacement could be initiated. The entire process took three weeks.

Tom’s experience after placing his order was nothing short of disastrous. He poured out his grievances on the company’s social media handles, product page, and many other places. No matter how good the UX was, he has no reason to remember it now.

2. Bad UX and good CX

Now let’s see the flipside. Haunted by his previous experience, Tom decided to try some other e-stores to buy a professional camera. He browses a new portal that has a poor UX. The search engine wasn’t accurate; there was no option to compare products, and lacked details on the product pages. It took him a lot of time to buy the product, but he did it finally.

However, history repeats itself, and Tom again gets the wrong product. He called customer support and was delighted with their response. The team apologized for his inconvenience and quickly arranged a pickup of the product. In the meantime, they initiated the replacement process. Within two days, Tom received the camera that he ordered. Moreover, the company gave him a 30 percent discount voucher to make him feel valued. John is unlikely to remember the lacking user experience and is highly unlikely to leave negative feedback in the comments section of the site.

UX is one of the strongest influences on the whole CX, but both CX and UX play a crucial role in the ultimate success of a business. Lacking in any of the two areas can lead to a bad overall impression of the brand. Therefore, companies must optimize both of them to stay ahead in this competitive market. Have more questions? Talk to our experts.

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