What digital experience leaders do differently: Findings from the State of Digital Experience 2020
Insights · 6 min read

What digital experience leaders do differently: Findings from the State of Digital Experience 2020

Natasha Wahid
Posted August 11, 2020

Introducing a new approach to increase your digital experience maturity, based on survey data from hundreds of digital professionals

Most companies know that the digital experience (DX) is now their most important customer touch point. Yet many still fail to deliver an experience that is consistently beneficial for customers.

This failure is rarely the result of a lack of awareness or even a lack of effort—but because delivering a seamless digital experience is really really hard. Any of these challenges sound familiar?

Our organization operates on gut instinct and stakeholders often argue over what our digital priorities should be.

Teams and individuals have a hard time quickly accessing information they need to do their jobs. This slows us down.

We waste so much time communicating across teams and trying to get on the same page. It feels like we’re all solving different problems.

Customer-facing digital teams are all using different technologies. Everyone is operating from different data sets.

We know our digital customer experience is disjointed and inconsistent, but it’s so hard to prioritize the right areas to fix first.

Digital is clearly a side priority—it doesn’t seem to be a major focus at the top.

How can companies address these challenges and create a digital experience that is the envy of their competitors? That’s what we set out to answer with new original research on the state of digital experience.

We wanted to understand what organizations that are more successful at delivering an ideal digital experience are doing differently. What organizational traits do they share? What activities do they invest in? What technology platforms do they have?

We surveyed hundreds of digital experience professionals primarily across North America to discover how they:

  • Structure their organization to facilitate efficient digital experience improvements

  • Source technologies to power the digital experience

  • Think about the digital experience and encourage continuous iteration

  • Set objectives and drive digital results

new in-depth report presents these research findings and provides a roadmap to help organizations replicate what works and increase their digital experience maturity—ultimately driving better digital results.


Based on survey responses from digital professionals—across product, engineering, UX, and marketing—this new 38-page report presents comprehensive data, findings, and strategic recommendations for organizations working to increase their digital experience maturity.

Provide a few details and get your copy of the report here.

Introducing ATOM: A new way to understand and develop your digital experience maturity

Understanding what digital experience success looks like is one thing. But understanding how to achieve digital experience success is another thing entirely. Which is why it’s helpful to use a maturity model.

FullStory’s digital experience maturity model includes four distinct phases of maturity:

  • Phase 0: An organization is in the very early stages of going “digital”.

  • Phase 1: Digital and the digital experience are a prominent focus, but there is still plenty of housekeeping to do.

  • Phase 2: The digital experience is a top priority and the organization is focused on refining the machine.

  • Phase 3: The digital experience is managed seamlessly and is continuously improving. Few organizations are here.

We evaluate digital experience maturity across four attributes: AlignmentTechnologyOutcomes, and Mindset. We call this approach ATOM.

Alignment refers to the organizational structures, processes, and practices that facilitate efficient and continuous digital experience improvement. Because Technology and digital are almost synonymous, we also evaluate maturity based on the effectiveness of the suite or stack an organization uses to power the digital experience.

Outcomes seeks to understand digital experience objectives and an organization’s ability to achieve those objectives. And Mindset refers to the organizational mindset (or culture) as well as the individual employee mindset—demonstrating how certain cultural traits support digital experience success.

Our findings show shared traits across more mature digital experience organizations

Our research revealed several key findings across the four attributes of maturity. When it comes to organizational Alignment, we found that organizations that report being more able to deliver an ideal digital experience are more likely to (have):

  • An executive owner who is responsible for digital experience success

  • Shared and transparent organizational objectives for digital experience

  • The ability to create consensus at the top-level around digital experience priorities

  • Use cross-functional team structures to enable digital experience improvement

  • Democratize information that facilitates employee autonomy and fast decision-making

  • A documented ideal customer journey across digital and non-digital channels

  • The ability to reduce the impact of disconnected teams

For example, more mature organizations are 64% more likely to report that they structure teams cross-functionally:

In terms of Technology, we see that organizations that report being more able to deliver an ideal digital experience are more likely to have technologies that:

  • Allow teams to directly access the data they need to do their jobs (however, organizations across the maturity spectrum struggle to provide teams to access the same customer data)

  • Provide a complete view of the customer’s digital experience

  • Allow for customer insights to be customized based on the audience

  • Uncover user trends in aggregate

  • Are highly integrated, diminishing the impact of disconnected teams

  • Allow teams to ship fixes and improvements quickly

According to the data, for example, more mature organizations are much more likely to report that they currently have a complete picture of the customer's digital experience (though this number is still relatively low).

The research also demonstrates organizations that set longer-term objectives and increase their maturity across the key attributes of alignment, technology, and mindset are more likely to see results—to drive Outcomes. More mature digital experience organizations are more likely to report being able to:

  • Easily prioritize digital fixes and improvements

  • Quickly ship digital fixes and improvements

  • Translate customer insights into action

  • Optimize the digital experience for key conversions

As demonstrated by the graph below, more mature organizations are much more likely to report that it is easy to optimize for key conversions. However, this number is still quite low, indicating plenty of room for improvement.

Finally, our research reveals the primary Mindset or cultural traits shared by organizations that deliver more perfect digital experiences. Organizations that report being more able to deliver an ideal digital experience are more likely to:

  • Report that the digital experience is an extremely high priority

  • Prioritize customer empathy and seek to understand the why behind customer behavior

  • Rely on evidence over gut feeling to make digital experience decisions

  • Celebrate intentional failure and encourage individuals to test and learn.

For example, less successful organizations are 36% more likely to report that they rely on gut instinct when it comes to making decisions about the digital experience.

Get your copy of the complete report today to explore all of the findings

Get the full report for an in-depth look at our findings along with strategic recommendations to increase your organization’s digital experience maturity and drive bottom-line impact from your digital efforts.

Natasha WahidFormer Senior Manager, Content

About the author

Natasha Wahid previously managed the Content Marketing Practice at FullStory.

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