Preventive Customer Experience Design & Churn

I have been creating user interface designs for more than a decade now. When I started years ago I would try to understand the requirements and jump into wireframes, as I improved my craft I started understanding the E2E (end to end) experience for the customer. This helped me understand the backend system that causes interruptions in customer experience and focus on that as well, like data flowing between and ERP and Payment systems.

E2E thinking is a great way to deliver awesome customer experience.

However in some cases we need to think about preventive experience design as compared to post prescriptive experience — keep in mind this only applies in some use cases.

Let’s take the use case when a customers credit card is about to expire for a product or service.

Ideally, you (designer/product manager) can focus on the experience of this webpage and call it a day but think how to avoid showing this screen to the customer — this is not a screen/message customer would be thrilled to see and fix. E2E thinking and preventive experience design would give the customer a seamless experience as they use your product. In most cases you would start sending an email reminder when 30 days is remaining in the CC to expire. Great! You might send another reminder in another 15 days. If the customer clicks the link and updates the CC then it’s all good but if the emails are ignored you need to think about the retention of this customer — this customer might drop, adding to your churn.

So what could you do? Reaching out to your support team would be a good approach. Calling your customer to identify why they are not updating their CC might be a sign that your customer is about to drop, these customers are the same bucket of customer who want to cancel. Understanding why they want to cancel or not continue would help you get deeper understanding and maybe help customer understand the value of your product and staying with your product.

Preventive experience gives the customer the perception of concierge service or in other words make them feel special, that could result in continuation of being your customer or positive word of mouth thus bringing new customers to your franchise.