Nov 08

Amazon.com is siloed and broken

I am a loyal customer at Amazon.co.uk. Everything there works swimmingly. They know who I am, and provide me with recommendations.

I have just moved to the US. To deliver to my new home, I need to use Amazon.com. Not ideal, but that’s ok, I expect that they still know who I am, and what I like. Unfortunately not:

Do the good folk at Amazon in the UK not talk to their colleagues in the US? Consider this alternative customer experience, told to me recently:

So I’m flying business class with Singapore Airlines. I’m in their lounge, having a Gibson Martini. I then move on to board the flight. Upon entry to the plane, the staff not only greet me by name, but they ask if I would like to continue drinking the same kind of Gibson Martini that I was enjoying in the lounge. Their staff had passed on my preferences, and it was a delightful customer experience.

Nov 08

Outside In Thinking

The way we do business is broken. We do business from the inside out, but it should be the other around. Our internal business silos make for terrible customer experiences.

What good is a great website if your in-store staff are rude?

What good is a great online purchasing tool if people don’t understand what you sell?

Customer experiences matter most because quality goods and customer satisfaction are commoditised. In the early 21st century, customer loyalty is increasingly necessary to be competitive. And the best way to drive loyalty is to create consistently compelling and authentic experiences. To design these experiences, we need a new skill set, a new way of understanding people. A new way of understanding customers. We need to understand how people think, and what motivates them to behave in certain ways. The best way to do this is to design from the outside in. To observe people in their own environment, probing them so that we understand their behaviour. This understanding enables us to design things that are meaningful and valuable to people. So stop designing products and features, and start designing experiences.

Presentation on \’Outside In Thinking\’ at the iQ Bootcamp 2008