Customer Relationship Management Vs Customer Experience Management ​


How is Customer Experience Management (CEM) different from Customer Relationship Management (CRM)?

No matter how big or small your business, the customer is always at the center of it all. Hence, customer satisfaction is of paramount importance when it comes to increasing revenue.

Understanding the needs and expectations of the brand helps companies improve their strategies and monitor their progress amidst the changing market trends. Two ways to monitor this customer-brand relationship are Customer Experience Management (CEM) and Customer Relationship Management (CRM). People often use these terms interchangeably; however, there are monumental differences between the two procedures.

From a layperson’s point of view, CRM talks about how a customer views the company and CEM is how a company views a customer. Today we are going to deep dive into how the two tools, despite having different objectives, affect each other and the overall company’s performance. So, let’s dive right in!

What is Customer Relationship Management (CRM)?

The concepts, procedures, and rules that a corporation adheres to while communicating with its consumers are referred to as customer relationship management (CRM).

This complete connection, as seen from the organization’s perspective, includes direct interactions with consumers, including sales and service-related procedures, forecasting, and the examination of consumer trends and habits. CRM’s goal is to improve the customer’s experience in general.

In recent years, there has been a dramatic rise in the usage of CRM software to improve a brand’s relationship with new and existing customers.

The main purpose of CRM is to maintain consistent sales. Its entire framework is based on initiating strategic business insights in order to establish strong relationships with customers.

Aim of CRM

Lead Generation: CRM provides a range of strategies to improve a brand’s campaigns, tracking, and analytics. As a result, companies get more conversions, which helps in boosting sales. CRM guides in tracking the inconsistencies in the marketing framework.

Closing more sales: Numerous CRM software tools store zillions of consumer data, including their past shopping history with the company, which helps monitor the results and predict future projects, campaigns, etc. This saves a lot of time for the sales team and increases productivity.

Streamlined Customer Support: Customer Support is the face of any company. Structured customer support will automatically build great rapport among customers. With a good CRM system in place, the team will have all the important information to resolve a customer’s issue and therefore, deliver exemplary service.

What is Customer Experience Management (CEM)?

It is a set of actions taken by a business to give consumers a tailored and easy experience at every touchpoint, right from a product’s manufacture to its sale. CEM ensures that every department runs smoothly and avoids any oversights.

This system’s primary goal is to make the difference between the intended and real customer experiences that you deliver. CEM is about accumulating all this experience data, whether it be through direct feedback, reviews, surveys, or other kinds of communication, in order to comprehend consumer viewpoint, improve the customer journey, and foster brand loyalty.

Aim of CEM

User Intent: Any successful business must answer three important questions in order to become successful. Who is my target audience? What do they need? And how do I provide it to them? It is essential to monitor your customer’s behavior and tap into their psychology to understand what they are looking for. Once you find those answers, you can build a loyal customer base.

Customer Engagement: Adding a personal touch helps the companies build a bond with its customers. For example, a lot of brands send push notifications on their apps to remind users of sales, offers, renewing memberships, etc. Regular engagement acts as a reminder for the customers.

Examine the Feedback: Receiving real-time feedback assists the brands to act on it in a timely manner and avoids future mishaps. Additionally, having a digital presence and getting input from these channels is crucial in the digital age.

Difference between CRM and CEM

So far, we have already understood that CRM is a holistic experience management strategy and CEM uses more of a customer-centric approach. Now, let us understand how both differ on other parameters:

Structural basis: CRM focuses more on catering to customer needs by establishing a customer management platform (e.g., customer support), configuring software systems, and establishing analytics tools. While, on the other hand, CEM deals with every touch-point between the company and the customer for which it builds customer-wise surveys (e.g., Mystery Shopping), feedback, company metrics, etc.

Functional basis: CRM attempts to align internal business processes and policies with an Inside-out approach, while, CEM devises strategies and plans that shape the product and service offerings. CEM employs an outside-in approach.

What is the role of customer experience management in CRM?

Even though typical CRM models provide a broad overview of the client contacts; they don’t provide the details as to why certain events take place the way they do. CX answers the questions here by analyzing the good and bad feedback and recalculating countless strategies so that the department focuses only on the process that improves the customer experience rather than wasting time and effort on methods that are useless.

Therefore, we can illicit that CRM and CX go hand in hand even if they solve distinct problems, follow different protocols, adhere to different tech stacks, and utilize different data. They effectively collaborate to build durable, reliable client connections.

Mystery Shopping: A gateway to building holistic CEM strategy

A covert collection of consumer data can be used to figure out an effective CEM strategy. The reason is, mystery shopping not only helps keep a particular brand’s customer experience in check but gathers useful info on competitor’s marketing models as well. Now that is a smart way to draw comparison graphs.

Brands can either develop their internal program or partner with external mystery shopping services (e.g., HS Brands Asia). the mystery shopping services oversee the entirety of shopper programs. This entails designing a survey with questions unique to the company, recruiting participants, checking the accuracy of completed surveys, and examining data to identify areas for improvement.


Customer satisfaction is at the core of every successful business and mapping their behavior can offer various insights into improving every aspect of the product or service. Therefore, employing effective CRM and CEM strategies would be a good plan for enhancing business acumen.

Since customer experience is a multi-faceted process; the addition of mystery shopping audits helps businesses plunge into the psyche of their customers and make shopping a delightful experience for them.

Share this article


Get in Touch With Us

Get in Touch With Us!