Why companies MOVE from Content Managements System (CMS) to Digital Experience Platforms (DXP)

Why companies MOVE from Content Managements System (CMS) to Digital Experience Platforms (DXP)

No matter if you are selling cosmetics, lawn mowers or large ERP systems it is certain that at least 60% of your potential clients will do their research online to gather information needed to make a perfect purchasing decision.

An image of The Journey is On sign

 

Content Management Systems (CMS) have been on the market for over 35 years, such as FileNet, founded in 1985. Since then, companies have been using enterprise and open source platforms to display content on their websites and manage the whole process of preparing, publishing and managing content on-line.

So what happened that the new term Digital Experience Platform emerged? Is it just another buzz word or a trick to add unneeded hype to CMS these days? Not at all! CMS is a great category of solutions, and is good enough for many organisations, but more and more businesses around the world require a step up, something more: a platform to manage their clients’ digital experience, where CMS is just one part of the equation.

Instead of finding clients, make it happened so you can be found

According to the 2017 B2C Ecommerce Country Report (US), 88 percent of consumers pre-research their buys online before making a purchase - either online or in-store.

When it comes to B2B clients, Forrester confirms that 68% prefer to research independently online.

To sum up, no matter if you’re selling cosmetics, lawn mowers or large ERP systems, it’s guaranteed that at least 60% of your potential clients will do their research online to gather the information needed to make a reasonable and timely purchasing decision that fits their criteria.

"It is a major shift from what we knew 20 or 30 years ago where sales people had all the knowledge and had winning positions over potential clients. These days clients have stronger purchasing positions because they have information from all over the market with recommendations and reviews from fellow clients. You need to be one step ahead then!"

So it all comes down to being found by clients and becoming a proactive narrator of your marketing communications.

Become a companion of your customers' journeys

Many marketing departments these days focus strongly on customer journeys. They understand that with B2B sales sometimes it can take even up to 2 years for clients to reach a buying decision, depending on the product or service. So your role is to understand their journeys first, join them, and become their guide as well as an advisor. Even if you’re buying a laptop for your kid, you go through a similar if stripped-down process, and in your professional life you look for content that allows you to make the best decision for yourself and others within your firm.

“Customer journeys” is a large enough topic that we will devote more space to it in a separate article. To keep things short here, let’s have a look at a sample journey, noting all the steps and channels involved, with the stops and starts and “mood swings” as the journey progresses.

Customer Journey Map

What is important to understand is that our website is no longer a one-stop shop for clients.

"Clients go omnichannel these days with websites, landing pages, social media, emails and content across the web, including product comparisons and reviews. Your challenge is not only to become proactive in all of these channels but also maintain a consistent brand image across all devices and platforms."

At the end of the day it is all about ROI

One of the biggest challenges these days for marketing departments is to validate ROI from their marketing activities. To prove effectiveness of budget spent on digital campaigns and platforms, they have to make sure that conversion rates are high enough. It is not enough to bring traffic to your portfolio of websites and social media activities - we need documented and actionable client engagement so we can turn visitors into customers.

You need to have the right tools to measure and trace each sale back to each dollar spent in the first place. Is it better to put everything on social media or push paid search with Google Ads? Or maybe more email marketing is the key to conversion, followed by premium content, along with white papers and ebooks? There’s no absolute answer - it depends on types of customer and your marketing experience. But when that experience must be gleaned and compiled from thousands of visitors, many who barely paused to say hello?

This is where a Digital Experience Platform comes in

So with the push to be findable, join customer journeys, and show ROI, your marketing department requires stronger solutions capable of:

  1. Managing content across channels, geographies and languages

  2. Ensuring consistent user experience on all devices and platforms

  3. Managing all the content from one place

  4. Personalising marketing messages for target groups

If you are a client from the UK, working in Spain, arriving via Google Ads on a quest for information about product A, you want to be served up personalised content that matches your interests, in your own language, and in a consistent way - no matter if you browse on your laptop or a mobile phone. And hey, if you had already been looking for product B, you want to be reminded about that and maybe presented with a comparison of both products.

Always one step ahead of your client.

So what is behind the Digital Experience Platform (DXP)?

I mentioned in the beginning that CMS as a solution forms part of a DXP. Stated simply, a DXP is an integrated set of technologies that let you manage all the digital experience we talked about above from one place.

It consist of:

  • Content Management System (CMS) - to make sure your content is curated and displayed in the right places to suit your on-line portfolio
  • Multichannel and multisite module - publishing content on different devices and channels while managing many websites, portals and landing pages from one place
  • Digital Asset Management (DAM) - all your photos, texts, videos and documents available from one central location, arranged in the right order and categories to be accessible for each communication channel
  • E-commerce - making the purchasing process seamlessly fit with the whole user experience
  • Marketing Automation - to bind your content personalisation and marketing activities together in a campaign-oriented model
  • Analytics platform - make sure your customer journeys are measured with relevant ROI and user flow reports generated at the end of the process
  • API - integrate and exchange data with other systems to get greater insight about your clients and their behaviour, and improve needed functionality with less effort

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Paul Montwill

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Digital Strategy Director

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