Newton’s first law of motion states that a body in motion will stay in motion unless another outside force acts upon it. Customer engagement is all about the velocity of the interactions between customer and company. When customers engage with a company, it’s crucial to remove (or at least, lessen) the forces that keep your customer from achieving their desired outcome.

A little force has big consequences on the customer’s experience. The frustration that momentary (or momentous) hang-ups cause is a common reason for customers to disengage with your company. It’s cliché to note how awful waiting on the phone for support just to talk to you can be—and companies have metrics around fixing this. Things such as mean-time-to-resolution and response time are important, but support phone calls are only one of the forces slowing down your customer’s velocity.

One of the most common, and detrimental, forces that customers encounter is site speed. As consumers come to prefer online self-service more and more each year, the responsiveness of your website becomes equally important. There is a ton of research out there supporting the fact that slow sites kill customer engagement and steal conversions. Some of the highlights include:

  • According to Amazon, they found that 100ms of latency translated into a 1% loss in sales.
  • According to Google, 500ms of latency was a 20% drop in searches
  • According to Akamai, half of web users expect a site to fully load in 2 seconds or less; after 3 seconds, those same people would abandon the site
  • Again from Akamai, 8 out of 10 shoppers won’t return to a site with slow website performance.

What’s clear from these numbers is that differences in the customer’s experience that may seem imperceptible to humans and trivial to companies are in fact pain points that need to be rectified.

Earlier we discussed the emerging role of the “micro” in customer engagement strategies. “Micro” allows for the ability to quickly share and consume content in momentary interactions between customer and company. When customers expect results in less than the blink of an eye, the key is delivering content quickly that is also easily consumable.

At MindTouch, performance is one of our top priorities and we’re constantly improving the performance of our customer’s MindTouch-powered help sites. The content our customers put in their MindTouch sites affects the entire customer journey, from marketing, to sales, to onboarding, to support. Increasing performance has a positive effect across the entire customer journey.

Site speed and call centers are two forces that bring your customer’s velocity to a halt and cause them to disengage. As you move forward with your customer engagement strategy, here are some questions to consider:

  • What other forces exist in your customer’s experience that is slowing down their velocity?
  • Which of these forces should you address first to improve your customer’s experience?
  • Are you measuring the effectiveness of customer touch points, or are you letting them turn into velocity killers?

Additional categories: Customer Experience