6 ways to rapidly improve omnichannel customer experience and exploit AI

Natalie Smithson
AI enthusiast | Tea addict | Focused on using AI assistants to win the working week
AI assistant handling enquiries

Are you struggling to deliver a seamless omnichannel customer experience (CX) that meets the needs of today’s customer?

The concept of omnichannel is more than ten years old and we’ve stretched far beyond its roots of bringing multiple channels together as one frictionless whole. There are now so many touchpoints available on so many different channels, providing a consistent and cohesive experience is a genuine challenge. To do omnichannel well, organisations need real-time access to customer data and a deep understanding of customer needs, a robust technology base, collaboration across all departments, and a commitment to ongoing improvement ― it’s a lot.

Here’s a detailed look into where to invest your efforts if you want to do omnichannel well, and how you can achieve a whole new level of excellence using AI.

How to get omnichannel CX right

Getting omnichannel CX right involves a comprehensive approach that puts the customer at the centre of your strategy. Before you start, it’s important to review what you already have in place, then plan how you’ll achieve new goals and optimise continuously for the best results.

  • Do you currently deliver the same message across every touchpoint?
  • Are there any gaps in your systems?
  • Do you have the technology infrastructure you need, or can things be improved?
  • How much does it all cost you?

What you don’t need to do is work out how to be everywhere ― just work out where you need to be that matters most to your customers. Then look at how well your channels come together to offer one seamless experience for them.

6 key areas to focus on to achieve a positive omnichannel CX

Even if your customer experience is good in all areas, if it doesn’t effortlessly transfer from channel to channel, you haven’t mastered omnichannel ― yet. That’s why being consistent with CX is first in our list of the six things you should focus on to truly deliver the most sublime customer experience.

1. Consistency and branding

Customers today expect to have a choice of channels and want to be able to switch between them effortlessly, with no real sense of a switch at all. They expect the same level of service and information regardless of which channel they use. Consistency is vital.

The first thing you can do to promote consistency is a review of your content to check your tone of voice is the same across all channels. Also, that information about your business, products and services is up to date throughout and is the same in every place it appears.

2. Customer needs and preferences

Where you show up for customers and having consistent branding in every place far outweighs how many channels you appear on, so we recommend you choose them wisely from the outset. It’s way harder to close down a channel than it is to start one, so pick the channels your customers want and need and would choose for you to have.

To be able to give your customers the right channels ie. the channels they will readily accept and happily use, you’ll first need to plot the customer journey. How do people find you? What leads them to the checkout? What do they do after they’ve bought from you? All this informs what channels you should offer to people to keep them close to your brand.

3. Response times and self-service

Research shows a quarter of people expect a response within 30 minutes to enquiries on social media. Almost 60% say they expect that same response level during the day and night. High demands they might be, but they reflect our era of instant gratification. Faster response times need to be a priority for anyone wanting to deliver on customer experience.

Another favourite among customers is convenience. Save people time or give them what they want for less effort and the happier they will be. This too is tied up in giving people what they want, when they want it, even if your team are all asleep in bed. Consider ways for customers to self-serve on your channels for unbeatable, convenient CX.

4. Data analytics and Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

Without data, it’s difficult to know what people want and need from you and how to deliver an experience that meets their expectations. Collect as much data as you can to tailor your CX to the specific needs of your customers and anticipate what they might need in future.

If you don’t already have a CRM system in place, consider getting one to follow who your customers are. Your CRM stores all your customer data including contact and purchase history, which helps you track the all-important customer journey we mentioned earlier, so you can get to know your customers better and be clear on what they like.

5. Personalising customer experience

For a single unified view of each customer, consider extending your CRM into a Customer Data Platform. You can then collect information about your customers from multiple sources (including your CRM) to personalise things for them which, in turn, brings a deeper sense of joy to their experience. You can not only personalise emails and offers, you can recommend products and services that match their buyer behaviour, offering a convenient, frictionless way for them to interact with your brand.

When you address customers directly with personalised marketing efforts, it helps build their trust in you. Show your people how well you know them; what they like and don’t like, make a recommendation or two, and deliver that same sublime CX on every channel.

6. Building familiarity and training

Marketing experts exploring how many ads the average person sees every day estimate anything from 4,000 to 10,000. That’s a lot of noise for you to cut through. A consistent message will help create a sense of familiarity with your brand, bringing comfort to buyers so they arrive virtually or physically through your door, not one of your competitors.

It’s not only your customers you need to build close relationships with either, it’s your teams as well. Make sure you train them on what your brand message is and who it represents. Share knowledge about the customer journey, people’s preferences and habits, and teach your team how to interpret data or use the CRM. Get everyone involved with improving omnichannel customer experience to make a true success of it.

Improving the customer experience not only increases sales, but also customer retention, loyalty, and satisfaction, as well as your business efficiency and brand reputation.

How AI is transforming omnichannel CX as a discipline

AI is a powerful tool that helps you as a CX leader provide better experiences for your customers ― this isn’t the end of omnichannel, it’s just a new evolution in how you deliver it.

All you need to do is launch an advanced AI assistant and all the ways you can improve omnichannel customer experience are given an instant boost.

Multichannel customer service

multiple channel marketing showing no ability to scale

Service is restricted to one customer on one channel at one time

Omnichannel customer service

omnichannel marketing with customers central to process

Service is connected across multiple touchpoints with customers central to operations

AI-driven omnichannel service

ai assistant with customers central and multiple channels of communication

Service is immediate and consistent across all touchpoints, using the same data across all channels

Constancy of content

Using an advanced AI assistant not only delivers consistency but consistency at scale. Your message can change instantly across all channels. During the covid pandemic when travel was off limits, ferry companies like Stena Line were inundated with questions from customers about cancelled trips and refunds. It didn’t matter if this question was asked on their website, mobile app or Facebook messenger, their one AI assistant would be given the correct answer and send out the same consistent message to tens of thousands of people at the same time across every channel.


You’ll be familiar with seeing chatbots on websites. You’ve had automated chats on messenger platforms like WhatsApp. No doubt you’ve chatted with a bot on SMS too. But a next-generation AI assistant can live in all these places and many more, including smart speakers, mobile apps, social media, team-working platforms like Slack and video conferencing apps like Teams, as well as on in-store kiosks or at events. Better still, it can live in all these places all at once, yet you only need to do one launch. As soon as your advanced AI assistant goes live, it starts to learn about your customers and delivers data to you. Quickly, you know what you need to do next. If that’s opening a new channel because everyone chooses WhatsApp over your website, you know it’ll be worth it.


One AI assistant can remember everything about every one of your customers, even tens of thousands of them. That means personalisation becomes a doddle since you learn through AI what each customer needs and what their preferences and habits are. The best thing is, you don’t need to manually analyse the data, AI does it for you. Content and offers can be automatically targeted to the right people. Recommendations will be spot on. All you need to do is launch your AI assistant and let it learn. Use what it shows you to create a unique and tailored experience for every customer to keep them more satisfied and loyal, and ultimately, increase revenue.

Data analytics

The volume of data we’re all generating is increasing rapidly, making it difficult to store, process, and analyse it efficiently. It’s often dispersed across multiple systems and platforms too, leading to integration and consistency issues. Incomplete, inaccurate, or duplicate data throws another spanner in the works, but using an AI assistant takes away all that stress. All the customer data your AI assistant collects across every channel is stored in one place and it keeps an accurate record where there’s no room for human error. Simply check your AI assistant dashboard to see your customer data presented as charts and trends you can work with to better your CX.

Response times

When your customer asks your AI assistant a question, the response is immediate. There’s no queue. No backlog. No wait time. There’s no better customer experience than that, is there? An instant response to your question at any time of the day or night, on any channel. What’s more, when your AI assistant is tackling a large volume of enquiries upfront, it gives your teams more time to work on the more unusual or sensitive enquiries that need the human touch. When they’re not bogged down by queues and backlogs either, that positive feeling passes through to your customers.

Identify opportunities

One of the biggest challenges of getting omnichannel right is knowing which channels to use in the first place. The joy in using an AI assistant is that the data starts to come in as soon as customers start to speak with it. You’ll soon see if there’s information that confuses people, if they’re not passing through the customer journey as you plan for them to, and if there’s a new way or a new channel to better communicate your offer or direct them to it. That way, you don’t waste time building something they don’t want or won’t use. You won’t need to build out separate channels or tools either, it’s all just more chat in more places managed with one smooth AI assistant interface.

Focus on meaning not methodology in omnichannel customer experience

It’s easy to get caught up in the meaning of the word omnichannel and neglect the fundamental business task that sits underneath it, which is to give customers a consistent, enjoyable experience across all channels. Using an AI assistant, there’s a real opportunity to get your messaging consistently brilliant for every consumer touchpoint, regardless of the channel or platform. It marks the next era of omnichannel CX with AI bringing the significant upgrade.