DESIGN

Service and experience are king.

Craig Norwood

AUTHOR

Craig Norwood

Digital Designer

Designing experiences for today's world

You’ve read the headlines – iPhone sales are stagnating. However, this isn’t something new, Apple’s market share has been falling since 2017, in 2018 though sales saw the biggest drop. Compare a 15.8% market share in the fourth quarter of 2018 with 17.9% for the same time in 2017. This wasn’t exclusive to Apple though as Samsung also saw its sales falling in 2018.1

Apple have probably been predicting this would come for some time. We’ve reached peak iPhone (I’m a bendy phone skeptic, it won’t save us) and there are almost 1bn iPhone users worldwide. That’s a lot of eyeballs, and wallets.

Cue a traditionally hardware focused event with no hardware.

March 2019 saw Apple unveil a whole host of new software and service offerings and are now a prime example of this current shift away from hardware. We’re very rapidly seeing this move from hardware to software and services. Not just from standalone software companies either, the tech giants are blurring the lines between industries – is Apple now a bank? Is Google now a car company? Is Facebook now a privacy focused company? Ok, maybe not that last one.

For those who think Apple and their flashy new credit card will never catch on, well the tech world is watching closely:

Google did offer a physical debit card for Google Wallet, a predecessor of Google Pay, but it shut down that program in 2016. Also, Samsung runs a credit-card company called Samsung Card in South Korea. “My gut on that is they wouldn’t necessarily jump in unless they saw that this Apple move was successful,” said Matt Schulz, an analyst at CompareCards, a LendingTree-owned card comparison site. Source – Cnet

Digital channels can provide an effective gateway to emotionally connect an organisation to its consumers

This is an insight from Deloitte on digital transformation within the banking industry.2 A key finding from their research was that consumers are expecting to see change in how they interact with their bank, and they want to see that change now. What if those expectations aren’t met? Well, customers will go elsewhere. 1,000,000 people now have a Monzo current account in the UK, with 20,000 new customers every week. That’s 15% of all new current accounts in the UK. So times are changing, and service is king. The saying has been around for years – the customer is always right. That also applies to the customer experience you’re providing. It’s just less about the specific product now and more about the service or experience itself.

Why do people use your app or website?

Why do people use Uber? To get from A to B with no nasty surprises along the way. You know exactly how much it’s going to cost, prepay, how long it’ll take for your driver to pick you up and what they’ll be driving. Expectation met. Designing an experience, whether digital or physical is about user expectation. Expectation influences experience. For example, Tim Cook actually showed the dictionary definition of what a service is at the recent keynote. That’s how much they’re buying into this, or I should say, want you to buy into this. How does this sound – Tim ended Apple’s latest Keynote with this, ‘At Apple, the customer is and always will be at the centre of everything that we do’ sounds familiar, or, let’s flip that; Apple will be at the centre of everything you do.3 That’s more like it. They no longer have a hardware eco-system strategy, it’s an every interaction you have with tech in your life, every digital experience strategy. This is something all of the big tech four are fighting to win.

More competition in the services space will be a good thing; banks have tech breathing down their necks whilst Netflix up their content quality to beat the ever growing competition.

Digital isn’t just an app or website.

It should be the foundation for entire businesses, design driven business certainly has the advantage in today’s climate. Ultimately, think about the experience of your users and remember you’re not your users! In the words of Simon Sinek, ‘Start with why.’

Help your users do what they want to do, and get them from A to B. They’ll be grateful and much happier to use your service time and time again. Contact Origin if you need help with the ‘why’.


Source / More Reading

1. Fortune – iPhone Sales
2. Deloitte – Digital Transformation Insights
3. The Verge – Apple March 2019 Keynote

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