Customer expectations around digital engagement are changing. The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated these trends, triggering a boom in demand for digital self-service. OpenText decided to seize this opportunity to transform its approach to the digital experience.
James Hawden, senior director of digital and web marketing programs at OpenText, explains, “In the wake of the pandemic, we’ve seen a significant shift in the way that people want and expect to engage with businesses. Increasingly, our prospects value a self-directed journey—preferring to research solutions online before they engage with our team. It’s therefore more important than ever to provide self-directed buyers with easy access to content as part of an integrated, multichannel experience.”
Hans-Gerd Schaal, vice president of digital engagement at OpenText, adds, “Like many enterprise technology companies, OpenText previously organized its web content from an inside-out perspective. Pages were focused on specific products and services, which meant visitors often had to visit several different pages to understand how our solution portfolio could help them to address their challenges—adding friction to the journey. We also saw an opportunity to deploy a fully integrated central digital asset management platform, helping us to implement compliance policies and supply brand assets consistently across the enterprise.”
In 2020, OpenText embarked on a far-reaching transformation initiative: OpenText Digital Zone. The aim is to deliver a seamless digital experience across the entire customer journey—from solution evaluation to post-sales technical support.
“Our objective is to deliver a total experience: one that offers everyone—whether they are a prospect, customer, business partner or even an OpenText employee—the same easy access to digital content from our entire ecosystem,” Schaal comments. “We want to make it fast and simple for our stakeholders to find anything they are looking for: business trends, solution and product information, technical demos, training resources, commercial services and more.”
Since we went live with the new OpenText.com experience, we’ve increased digital engagement by 10%, which shows that the new content is resonating with our audiences.
OpenText divided the Digital Zone initiative into three phases. In phase one, the company reimagined the OpenText website with a customer-centric experience.
By harnessing a composable architecture built on Experience Cloud and powered by Google Cloud Platform, OpenText laid the foundation for richer, more relevant and more compelling data-driven experiences. The new digital platform includes fresh content for more than 1,100 web pages, offering greater clarity, concision and accessibility.
“This project is about far more than building a new website,” says Hawden. “We aim to create an entirely new and integrated digital experience. To that end, it was crucial to consider multiple interconnected requirements, including the platform, content management system, look and feel and content. We also want to bring in new ways to enable one-to-one conversations, such as chatbots and live chats. By supporting all these capabilities together on a single platform using OpenText Experience Cloud, we have the solid foundation we need to deliver on all phases of the project.”
OpenText has shifted away from product- and feature-oriented content, instead organizing information from the customer’s business perspective.
“Individual pages about specific products and services are easier to maintain from an internal perspective because it’s straightforward to determine which teams in OpenText are responsible for managing the content—but this approach makes it much more difficult for visitors to find the information they’re looking for,” says Schaal. “To engage effectively with our audience, we now structure pages around industry and line-of-business processes, focusing on key customer pain points and business solutions, with easy-to-consume, relevant content showing how OpenText helps to solve the challenges our customers are facing.”
By monitoring visitor behavior and performing regular A/B tests, the company can quickly determine the most effective ways to communicate with its target audiences and continuously optimize its digital content.
Now in the second phase of the project, OpenText is localizing its new content for all global regions. And in the third and final phase, the company will integrate Experience Cloud with back-end systems from Google, SAP and Salesforce, enabling the organization to harness data on prospects and customers to increase personalization based on each visitor’s individual needs and preferences. The company’s composable approach and open platform will help deliver all the required integrations to enable these future capabilities.
“In the digital world,” Schaal adds, “we rely even more on data to understand markets, demand and customer needs. Integrating our front-end digital experience with our systems of insight behind the scenes will be crucial to achieve our long-term goals. The objective is to deliver the right content to the right person at the right time via the optimal channel, including email, social, web and chatbot.”
By reducing friction in the digital journey, we are making it easier for people to engage with OpenText online and on any type of device.
As the second phase of its transformation gains pace, OpenText is measuring positive results from its new digital platform.
“People don’t typically arrive on our website looking for information about a specific OpenText technology—they come with a problem they’re trying to solve,” says Hawden. “For that reason, we now lead with solutions, not products. In practice, that means that visitors see relevant stories, services and resources on our solution pages, and it’s easy to dive deeper into the areas they’re interested in. And thanks to OpenText Experience Cloud, we’ve cut the lead time for publishing by 50%, so we can get new content online in days or even minutes, if needed.”
OpenText is also measuring improvements across other key performance indicators. The number of unique visitors has risen while the number of sessions per visitor has fallen. Bounce rates have dropped dramatically, and the number of interactions on high-value touch points such as contact forms and live chats has increased—all reflecting the fact that the company is successfully connecting with its target audiences and enabling them to find the content they are looking for more easily.
Hawden confirms, “Today, visitors can complete journeys—for example, from a Google search to an OpenText solution page to a chatbot engagement—in fewer steps. By reducing friction in the digital journey, we are making it easier for people to engage with OpenText online and on any type of device.”
Crucially, teams across OpenText now gain real-time insights into digital engagement, so they can continually refine content for maximum impact.
“Good things are coming from all the effort we’re putting into content management, “Schaal says. “Since we went live with the new OpenText.com experience, we’ve increased digital engagement by 10%, which shows that the new content is resonating with our audiences."
In the final phase of the project, OpenText will further improve the customer experience by introducing the OpenText Cloud Zone: a central hub that unifies products, services and training on a central digital platform. This will help further streamline customer experience management for OpenText employees and offer easier engagement for OpenText clients.
Hawden says, “Realizing the true potential of OpenText Cloud Zone will be a complex project because of the sheer number of back-end systems involved—but with OpenText Experience Cloud, we have the integration capabilities to handle that complexity.”
As the transformation initiative continues, OpenText is confident that it has the right foundation to realize its total experience goals.
“The end state is a complete and consistent digital experience for all our stakeholders: from customers and prospects to employees and partners,” concludes Schaal. “The milestones we have achieved show that OpenText Experience Cloud is the optimal platform for our project, and that our vision for an integrated digital experience will soon become a reality.”