Forrester believes that future consumer digital experiences will be simultaneously more invisible and immersive. Consumers will seek experiences with less friction when they are task-oriented or need peace of mind. Some of these experiences will have so little friction that there is no friction. Forrester refers to the ultimate in convenient experiences as an invisible experience (IX). Among executives interviewed by Forrester, nearly all definitively agreed with the statement that “anticipating the needs of our customers and serving them proactively will create value for the consumer and help us build a competitive advantage.”

Clients ask us, “What is an example of an invisible experience?” My favorite example is the grocery store door that opens automatically when you approach it or the escalator that starts as soon as you step on it. Simple digital experiences are also easy to find today. For example, Domino’s Pizza pushes out delivery status notifications so that a customer always has peace of mind that their food is en route. Apple nudges smartwatch owners to stand up or move to meet their fitness goals. The most sophisticated invisible experiences will ultimately build consumer insights, anticipate the needs of their customers, and act on their behalf. These examples are hard to find today.

Forrester wants to both inspire clients to build invisible experiences and guide them along this journey. We’ve identified more than 60 competencies that enterprises must have, build, or evolve to deliver invisible experiences. We built roadmaps for the 25 most important competencies that outline a process from how you start to how you excel. Each map illustrates a strategy along with the associated talent, processes, metrics, and technology to build the competency.

Forrester can help you assess your ability to design, build, and deliver invisible experiences at scale through guidance sessions, research, and tools. We rely on both qualitative interviews as well as a new executive survey dedicated to consumer digital experiences. Start your process with the following:

  1. Future Digital Experiences: Invisible And Immersive. This document will help you understand the role of invisible experiences.
  2. Anticipating Customers’ Needs Is A Shared Aspiration, Not A Reality, In 2023. This report reviews the state of anticipatory or invisible experiences.
  3. Anticipatory Experiences Require New Competency Superpowers. This report outlines how each competency will help you deliver invisible experiences.
  4. Invisible Experience Competencies Toolkit. This report offers links to the first 25 competency maps.

If you’d like to begin or evolve your ability to design, build, and deliver invisible experiences, please get in touch to set up a guidance session.

PS — We switched the nomenclature from “anticipatory experiences” to “invisible experiences.” We’ll update the research over time to reflect the change in name.