Managing the customer experience across digital channels—how Party City’s cross-channel strategy led to CX improvements

Chris Bosco | Jun 8, 2021 Chris Bosco 06/08/21

Whether it’s visiting your website to research and purchase products or engaging with your mobile app, customers are turning to digital channels more frequently than ever.

In their June 2020 report, Envisioning The Future of Omnichannel Commerce, Forrester states, “It’s hard to identify a customer across every screen, channel, and digital touchpoint, but it’s critical to master this single view to become an omnichannel organization.”

With this in mind, Party City prioritized revamping their digital strategy and making targeted improvements across the customer journey.

In this blog, we’ll look at the steps Party City took to create the consistent and seamless cross-channel experience consumers expect—resulting in rapidly increased feedback collection and improved KPIs.


Step 1: Identify focus areas that align with customer needs

The first step of Party City’s enhanced cross-channel strategy was to create an action plan. The specialty retailer worked with their SMG team to identify 3 focus areas to ensure their efforts were aligned with evolving customer expectations:

  • Identify breakdowns in the customer experience to reduce friction + attrition
  • Uncover insights specific to creating a consistent + favorable impression of the brand
  • Integrate reporting to simplify data interpretation + increase enterprise adoption

Once the plan was set, the brand got to work implementing the necessary enhancements to its CX program.


Step 2: Leverage the right technology to make smart changes

Creating a successful cross-channel strategy requires much more than launching a bunch of new tech—it’s about implementing solutions that make the most sense for your brand and customers.

To create a better cross-channel experience for their customers, Party City harnessed the following technologies:

Ratings + Reviews | By measuring ratings + reviews across top review sites, Party City increased responsiveness, tapped into location-level competitive benchmarks, and paired social data with solicited feedback.

Digital feedback | They also enhanced their digital feedback management program, implementing targeted site-intercept surveys and an always-on feedback button to capture more solicited and unsolicited feedback from web + mobile users.

Brand experience measurement | Additionally, Party City began measuring the brand experience, connecting customer perceptions and behavioral data with customer feedback to pinpoint ways to deliver on its brand promise and drive loyalty.

smg360® platform | Finally, to bring it all together, the brand combined this new feedback with its existing customer experience data, connecting disparate datasets in the smg360 platform. With this cohesive view of the customer experience and access to real-time data across multiple touchpoints, Party City was able to make targeted changes in areas that mattered most to customers.


Step 3: Increase feedback collection + improve KPIs

Since increasing their digital touchpoints and evolving their cross-channel strategy, Party City has rapidly improved the customer experience, garnered more valuable feedback, and drove tangible results.

Specifically, the brand increased in-store feedback collection by 2.1x and off-premise feedback collection by 4x. Party City also improved their Overall Satisfaction score by 8ppts.

cross-channel-feedback-strategy-retail-smg-1


Ditch your customer experience data silos

You can’t afford to have less-than-stellar digital touchpoints. But as Party City demonstrates, digital is just one piece of the puzzle. If you’re not incorporating digital CX data with feedback from other channels, you’re delivering fragmented experiences and missing out on conversion opportunities.

Brands must offer a frictionless cross-channel experience to meet the expectations of today’s consumer. If your CX data is siloed across multiple channels and platforms, meeting those expectations will prove difficult, if not impossible.

The Gartner report, “Adopt a Customer-Centric Approach to Drive Customer Experience,” details how to manage and improve customer experiences at each stage in the customer journey. Get your complimentary copy here.


Chris Bosco | VP + GM, Digital

Customer Experience Update