Customer Experience: Creating a Frictionless Experience

The Harvard Business Review posted a great article titled, “What’s the Right Customer Experience for Your Brand“. In the article it mentions the phrase frictionless journey. For instance, The New York Times auto-renew process is mentioned as an example. But what does “frictionless” actually mean?

What is a Frictionless Journey?

Hubspot defines a frictionless journey as “Friction is anything that impedes a consumer from completing the customer journey. These can be small roadblocks like long wait times and shipping costs, or they can be major problems like botched orders and escalated service inquiries.” 

Friction typically occurs during a transaction. The customer is trying to complete a task. The right customer experience would remove everything not required in order to complete the transaction. For instance, asking a user for their middle name or prefix. Also, asking how did you hear about us. You can ask that question in a fast-follow email once the purchase is complete. Think of form fields like speed bumps and slow page loads as four way stops.

Now imagine your customer is in a car traveling down a road. Every time they put on their brakes is an opportunity to reduce friction. Did they have to wait for a web page to load? That’s a brake light. Did they have to navigate 15 form fields to complete a task? That’s a brake light. You get it.

How to Create a Frictionless Customer Experience

Using the customer in a car scenario is the best way to think about a customer journey. Think about all of the times they had to put on the brakes. Now follow these steps…

  1. Record every brake light moment.
  2. Investigate why they are braking. 
  3. Determine if you’re going to remove the “thing”, fix the “thing”, or move the “thing” later in the journey.
  4. Update the journey; test it with users.
  5. Optimize and release the new journey and enjoy knowing you have created a brake light-free experience.

Put this plan into action and tell me your results. I’d be interested to know what were your brake light moments and how you fixed them. Connect with me.


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