Three ways to shake up your practice’s digital experience

By Alec Berry, Business Development Manager, Morningstar

Throughout lockdowns, the role of technology was heightened, and as we move through a post-COVID world, it’s only getting bigger. From connecting us to loved ones to speeding up transactions to rethinking traditionally analog experiences, there’s little that’s been left untouched by enhanced efficiency, innovation, and technological disruption. Unsurprisingly, the advice world isn’t immune to this shift.

1. Convenience is king: Put the important information front and centre

With change constantly in motion, reducing friction – and time spent – for clients is central to their conversion and overall experience with your practice. This means ensuring that your clients have easy digital access to specific information about your services. This includes:

Process: what does partnering with you look like? What are the steps involved in seeking advice and developing a financial plan, and what kind of actions does the client need to take?

Turnaround times: what are the expected timelines for different types of advice or services?

Deliverables and expected outcomes: what do clients receive for money spent? Spell out the value you offer.

Price: We’ve all had experiences where we navigate to a website to understand how much a service will cost, only to reach a dead end. While this can be tricky without knowing a clients’ full circumstances, having estimations readily available can make a huge difference to a casual browser doing their due diligence.

2. Self-service: Give your clients options to DIY aspects of the advice experience

Digital tools like calculators, learning modules and interactive chat functions can hybridise the advice experience and empower your clients to find information they need, when they need it – and set up the foundations for future conversations. By making discovery easy, your clients and potential clients can find information that’s new, interesting and relevant to their circumstances so that they can decide if they want to engage with you without having to be in the same room. This removes the pressure of having to make a decision in the short span of a face-to-face meeting, and can also mean that these tough decisions are made before they’ve even secured a meeting.

3. Drive with data: Use data points to make decisions and shape strategies

By using digital tools to identify and implement a set of metrics to determine how your clients’ digital journeys are progressing, or conversely, the sticking points where they’re stalling, you can map out client pathways as well as making important calls on what to stop doing, or what to remove from your website or digital portals. You can also use this data to create an ongoing, flexible approach to improvement and innovation, therefore applying Agile principles – commonly used by tech teams and large organisations – to ensure your business isn’t left behind in a constantly evolving space.

If you’ve been waiting for a sign to evaluate your digital experience, this is it. By thinking deeply about how your digital experience can impact your client engagement, you address the gaps that competitors are facing, and ensure that your clients and potential clients truly understand the value that your business offers. And of course, an enhanced digital experience doesn’t mean eliminating face-to-face contact – a modern advice practice can use both remote and in-person meetings to deliver true value to clients.

Alec Berry is Business Development Manager at Morningstar Australasia Pty Ltd.


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