What is Phygital?
Phygital (physical plus digital) is a marketing term that refers to combining digital and physical encounters. Companies want to make combining customer interaction and communication channels as frictionless and seamless as possible, so that a customer can make a phone call, then communicate on a social media platform, then send an email without the company losing track of the conversation or losing track of the customer issues associated with the customer account record.
Companies now have the obligation to bridge this gap to reduce consumer friction, dissatisfaction, and attrition, which is sometimes referred to as an omnichannel customer experience. Physical experiences can be enhanced with information, whereas digital experiences can be enhanced with human connections or physical enhancements. Marketing automation software can be used to send personalized communications to clients via email, SMS text, and social media, among other channels.
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Consider the impact of beacon technology, which may identify a customer in a specific aisle and match his mobile identity with his online identity to potentially identify that he has things in his online shopping cart that have been abandoned. Messages regarding where to find similar things in the business might then be provided to the customer. Phygital experiences enhance the value of each domain by merging surroundings through data. Geolocation data, which identifies where a client is in a store or in its surroundings, is frequently used in phygital blending. Wearable devices can also track a customer's location and send and receive data with customized recommendations, notifications, and other information.
Some airways now use social media to create a phygital revel in, in which they learn that the passenger is flying with them, greet them at the airport, and provide them a present based on loyalty points. Sensors connected to the Internet of Things (IoT) may be able to identify when a car or refrigerator needs service and dispatch a technician without the consumer having to arrange an appointment. When a tag is scanned, retail outlets are also testing equipment like "smart mirrors," which may provide outfit suggestions or provide information on various colors and sizes.
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These advancements not only bridge the digital and physical worlds but also enable businesses to create proactive, one-of-a-kind services. This right-time, right-place encounters are intended to engage clients in a proactive manner and service their requirements or provide upselling chances. At the same time, if customers aren't happy with the way or type of data a firm utilizes to produce these experiences, some of these experiences can quickly become obtrusive or "creepy."
What is a Phygital Strategy?
Developing a physical plan must begin with an evaluation of your present client experience. Where are customers having difficulties? What achievements do they have that you'd like to invest more in? These kinds of data will offer you a lot to work with and can point you in the right direction for designing a physical experience that not only meets but surpasses client expectations. What can you do to improve the way you combine your physical and digital experiences? The idea is to develop immersive experiences that customers find so simple to use that they achieve silent utility - that is, it works so well that you don't even need customer feedback because it just works. When everything just works for your customers and the effort required of them to engage with your brand is so low that they keep coming back, you know you've got a winning strategy.
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Examples of Phygital Experiences
There are numerous ways to improve your current phygital experiences. Let's look at some real-world phygital examples and see how they can help you improve your client experience.
Using a kiosk is a classic example of phygital. A kiosk, whether at an airport, a bank, or a restaurant, allows customers to complete basic transactions quickly and effectively by integrating digital technology into a physical area. Almost everyone has used one, and they've grown so popular and accepted that most customers don't even consider it a digital experience; it's just how things are done.
During COVID-19, some customers may be hesitant to use a kiosk rather than engage in face-to-face interaction. In a post-COVID future, a kiosk can be reimagined in a variety of ways to improve the phygital experience. Consider entering a quick-service restaurant and approaching a kiosk that is already aware of your presence due to geofencing. The kiosk greets you, suggests goods you've previously purchased, and matches your mobile app information, such as payment details and dietary requirements. This type of contact streamlines the kiosk experience, making it so user-centric that customers have the best possible interaction with your business, resulting in increased customer loyalty.
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2. Mobile Apps, Curbside Pick-Up, Delivery, and BOPIS
Consumers projected that once social distancing has relaxed, they'll use curbside pickup even more - up to 125% of their entire volume of purchases, according to a Mobiquity survey. Customers are increasingly appreciating the convenience that curbside, buy online pick up in-store (BOPIS), and mobile apps provide. Companies that have spent time thinking about how to provide the safest, most convenient experiences will win as more individuals obtain the COVID-19 immunization and return to convenience stores, restaurants, banks, and retail outlets.
Take the adoption of QR codes in restaurants, for example. You can scan a QR code on your table with your mobile device to read the menu or drinks on tap without having to touch a physical, printed menu. Because of the simplicity and safety they provide, these types of technologies will continue to arise long when social separation fades. However, not every consumer will be eager to return to a store or restaurant. Not every customer, on the other hand, will desire to employ technology. As a result, you'll need to account for the many types of consumers you'll be serving in your phygital experience.
When it comes to learning how to utilize technology, baby boomers are more likely to seek assistance. By that time, Millennials and Gen Z will expect you to have perfected your technological offerings. Your goal is to make sure that all of your clients have what they need, which entails delivering a physically accessible digital experience.
3. Websites and Customer Portals
When it comes to establishing online portals, the insurance and healthcare industries are undoubtedly the most essential. Both are supposed to be simple to use so that customers may self-serve tasks such as paying their bills or obtaining prescription refills. However, not all websites meet this criterion. Some are quite difficult to browse, and clients must rely on a customer support line to obtain the information they require. This, however, should not be the case!
First and foremost, websites should be mobile-friendly. Almost everyone has access to a mobile phone, which is frequently their primary source of information for daily tasks - including insurance and healthcare management. According to research, 52% of consumers think that switching insurers is easier than it used to be, and 30 percent agree that they would consider switching insurers for improved digital features. Insurance firms rely largely on their agents' relationships with consumers, but think how different the customer experience could be if agents were trained on how to teach customers to self-serve.
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In the healthcare industry, a poll is conducted to find out how baby boomers felt about technology, and we discovered that many of them expressed a desire to use telemedicine in the future. Only 10% of baby boomers utilized telemedicine prior to COVID-19, but that number has already risen to 47% after the pandemic began, representing a 469% increase in telemedicine use! As healthcare providers consider how to effectively serve patients, website portals with a telemedicine component will become increasingly important. Website portals provide a phygital way for patients who don't need to be seen in person to communicate with their doctor while also harnessing technology to better fit their lifestyle.
Amazon's Alexa is a cloud-based speech service that is becoming more popular with each passing year. According to reports, one out of every four Americans will own a smart speaker gadget by 2020. They may, however, be used for more than just gaming and listening to music. More businesses are developing vocal talents to assist customers with daily tasks. And, like the previous instances given, it's usual for these encounters to include both a digital and a physical component. For instance, you might ask Alexa to keep track of the medical data that your wearable gadgets provide each day. You can access that data at any moment, even when you're in the middle of a telemedicine consultation with your doctor, ready to discuss it and how it can help you improve your overall health.
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5. Digital Payments
We literally ran out of coinage during the peak of the pandemic because so many people were ordering groceries, household goods, and other items online. When it comes to the banking business, 37% of baby boomers say they use mobile banking apps more than they did in the previous year. Furthermore, almost a third of millennials believe they will move banks in the next 12 months. More phygital options are clearly desired by banking customers. Many typical banking operations can now be completed without visiting a bank. Bank branches, on the other hand, still exist, and you should strive to harmonize the in-person and digital experiences. However, the scope of digital payments extends much beyond that of digital banking.
Customers should be able to purchase and check out more easily, thus retailers should consider this as well. The integrated digital payments into their mobile app so that clients could fill up their gas tanks with minimal effort and complete the purchase immediately from their phone. Another option to reduce customer effort and boost convenience is to integrate your mobile app with Apple Pay and Google Pay. As more individuals engage in personal interactions, the convenience of a phygital digital payment procedure will be appreciated by many.