When COVID-19 changed how the world did business, organizations shifted into survival mode and pushed for a focus on digital products. As businesses shifted tactics, customers made it clear that not only did they like the shift to digital, they’d prefer to stay there for the future.
Seventy-six percent of CIOs reported increased demand for new digital products and services as a result of COVID-19 and 83% expect that to increase further in 2021, according to the Gartner CIO Agenda 2021. Along the same line, 65% of CIOs saw an increase in the use of self-service by customers/citizens, and 79% expect that usage to grow in 2021.
This is especially true among top-performing organizations, with nine out of 10 pursuing digital channels and nearly 75% introducing new digital products faster. And it seems to be working. Organizations that increased their use of digital channels to reach customers or citizens are 3.5 times more likely to be top performers than trailing ones.
These changes allow organizations to maintain and develop deeper relationships with established customers at a time when new customers are tough to find. More digital products and services or self-service avenues encourage established customers to spend more, despite a lack of in-person touchpoints. These digital avenues will also enable organizations to extend sales and service hours without requiring more staff.