Under Development - please come back soon

Under Development - please come back soon

​There was a large scaffolding hoarding recently covering a building renovation in Westminster and it made me wonder about the old habit digitally of placing holding statements and ‘coming soon’ banners in place of what should really be there.

In the early days of the internet we had more time, we were more patient and the concept of a digital customer journey was in its infancy. There wasn’t a problem with a company having what was called a ‘brochure website’, a digital translation of their printed product brochure on a computer screen.

Those days are gone and today it’s about always-on, seamless customer journeys linking the needs of the customer with the provision of excellent service, whenever it is required. So where does the ‘we are not currently available but please come back later’ fit? Well in my view it doesn’t.

The Back button on your browser instantly provides a link to a competitor website which will likely be open and available for business. No matter how well you dress up the renovation or the empty shell you are building, it’s about limiting these empty customer experiences to the minimal time possible, or perhaps and more appropriately, providing a suitable alternative in the meantime.

Whilst the well dressed scaffolding hoarding provided a visually acceptable alternative to the works happening behind it, there is no hiding from the truth it wasn’t as good as the finished product. So the next time you cut a link in your otherwise integrated customer experience, see if you can find a suitable alternative to keep everything live and available. Your customers will thank you.