« Les français sont exigeants » is how I summarized Forrester’s findings about the quality of customer experience in France last week at Paris Tendances 2020 — translation: “The French are demanding.”

Why? Because, according to the 9,000 French respondents to our latest Customer Experience Index (CX Index™) survey, the quality of experiences delivered by major brands that are present in France is not just disappointing on average — it’s significantly more so than in other countries like the US and the UK.

There are a few standout exceptions that French consumers put at the upper echelons of the rankings, such as Crédit Mutuel, The Body Shop, MAIF, and Yves Rocher. But overall, CX in France is behind. In my speech at the event, I delved into some of the likely reasons why, such as organizational and cultural barriers and, especially, a pattern at companies in France of taking decisive action but without dedicating enough time to testing and experimentation in order to improve the experience.

I also gave an overview of a few 2020 CX trends: the design revolution underway, the pressure on CX professionals to demonstrate the ROI of their efforts to improve CX, the rise of dark patterns but also of “nudge” products, and the spread of inclusive design. And I highlighted a few companies taking smart steps to deliver better experiences than their peers and that therefore did particularly well in Forrester’s CX Index globally, such as Amazon, Erie Insurance, Neiman Marcus, and TD Bank.

My presentation was just one of many in this all-day event, which also included compelling industry speakers and drew business leaders from France and beyond. This is the second time we’ve done an event like this entirely in French — the first one was at this time last year. If you’re interested in CX in France and you missed it this time, join us next year!