It is important to provide customers with what they need in a prompt and friendly manner.
- In retail, that could mean remembering and appreciating repeat customers, forging a local connection with shoppers, putting your product knowledge to good use, and more.
- The best retail systems have customer management features and reporting that provide you with insights that you can incorporate into your sales, marketing, and customer service efforts.
One of the top factors that affect how shoppers perceive your brand is customer service.
The good news is that you are in charge when it comes to customer service.
Although you can’t do anything about the weather or your competitors, you can control the level of service you provide. You should always be trying to find ways to impress your shoppers.
What is good customer service?
It’s important to make sure your customers are happy by meeting their needs in a timely and efficient manner. Additionally, it’s important to be pleasant to them. Customer service can include activities such as handling customer complaints, providing information about products and services, and processing orders. This could involve directing shoppers to the right part of the store or assisting them with a product issue.
Here are some examples of good customer service
Good customer service in retail can be remembering and appreciating your regular customers, connecting with shoppers who are local to your store, using your product knowledge to help customers, and more.
Keep reading to learn how you can improve your customer strategies.
The store owner who remembers — and appreciates — repeat customers
You should make sure that your customers are always surprised and delighted with your service in order to keep them coming back. Retailers should strive to have repeat customers, as they are the best shoppers, and remember them.
The online merchant sends personalized video message to each new customer.
It’s not every day that you see a personalized video message thanking a customer for their first purchase when they’re shopping online. This is something that many retailers do in order to welcome their new customers.
The online store that proactively addresses shipping issues
When you sell online, you will have to deal with shipping and delivery issues. There are many problems that could occur, such as missed deliveries, damaged shipments, and delays.
Even if the issues are not your fault, you are still responsible for the customer experience.
The associate who comes up with the perfect greeting
Customer service is important from the beginning, when people first walk in the door. Make a great first impression on your customers by having a strong greeting. Avoid cookie-cutter message like “Can I help you?”. Instead of just saying “hi,” take the opportunity to get to know the person better, or do something nice for them.
The employees who go out of their way to cheer up a shopper
It a customer looking a bit down? See if you can cheer them up. You can make someone’s day by smiling at them and giving them a compliment. If your friends are feeling down, you can try to make them laugh by telling a joke or sharing a funny story. Every customer is different, so you’ll need to be creative in your approach.
The retail worker who knows his regulars
One of the best ways to make retail customers feel special is to demonstrate that you are familiar with their shopping habits.
can sell a customer twice as much as the one who doesn’t bother to learn the details An associate who understands the features and benefits of the products they are selling can sell twice as much to customers as someone who doesn’t take the time to learn about the products.
You and your staff must have a good knowledge of your products and catalog details at all times in order to provide good customer service. This comes in handy when you’re:
- Talking about your bestsellers
- Discussing the features and benefits of various items
- Teaching shoppers how to use a product
The retailer offering a sincere apology
No matter how great your product is, there will always be times when things don’t go as planned for your customers. It’s during these times that your customer service skills are really put to the test. The best way to deal with an unpleasant situation varies depending on the circumstances, but often you can improve the situation by apologizing and trying to make up for what happened.
is going to come out ahead in the long run The retailer who makes an effort to upsell and educate customers will be more successful in the long run.
Think upselling is sleazy or bad for customer service? Not if you do it right. I can guarantee that if you educate customers before they purchase and tailor your recommendations to their needs, the shopper will leave happy.
Good customer service creates memorable customer experience
Memorable Customer Experiences
Creating a memorable customer experience by providing great service is one of the most effective ways to improve customer loyalty. People want to have memorable experiences with brands that cater to their individual needs. Eight companies that have successfully created an effective and memorable customer experience are as follows:
HATCH Leverages In-Store Events
HATCH is a maternity fashion brand known for its chic and comfortable clothing for expecting moms. The brand has been associated with education and community-building events for the same demographic.
The brand wants their retail spaces to be a place where soon-to-be-moms can connect with each other and share information. They have established themselves as a resource for customers that goes beyond the products they sell through regular and recurring events. Here are just a couple of the events they offer:
Join Elizabeth Bachner, founder of GraceFull, as she guides you through the process of creating your birth plan. Go over all the questions you need to ask yourself to make informed decisions about your birth.
The brand is creating customer experiences that are more than just shopping, which builds trust, authority, and stronger relationships with customers. This turns customers into lifelong supporters and brand advocates.
Ettitude Overcomes Obstacles to Purchase
Buying bedding is often a very tactile experience, right? Make sure to feel the fabric of the bedding you’re interested in to ensure it’s a texture you’ll enjoy sleeping on every night. You should also consider what colors will match the rest of your decor.
Ettitude is an online-only brand, so these used to be difficult obstacles for them. The following were the obstacles they had to overcome to get new customers. This allowed customers to see the different fabrics and colors available. This resource isn’t advertised on the website, but the swatch book is available for free to customers who have questions about color and texture.
Function of Beauty Offers Supreme Customization
If you needed a new bottle of shampoo or conditioner in the past, you would go to the appropriate aisle in the store and pick one or two bottles off the shelf. If you want better quality products, you might buy professional-quality products from your salon. Although there were products available for people with fine hair or dry scalps, this was the only customization that was offered.
Function of Beauty creates customized buying experiences for individuals. The company let customers pick everything from the color of the product, to how strong its smell was, to the hair care properties that the customer needed.
How’d they know to do this? Through a formula-building hair quiz.
Hidden Crown Helps Online Customers Color-Match
If you’ve ever had your hair colored, you know that finding an exact match is difficult. The hair extension company, Hidden Crown, had to put in a lot of work when they launched their ecommerce store. They needed to determine how they could aid customers in choosing the appropriate product that would work well with their natural hair, thinking this would result in more interested potential customers and fewer returns and grievances.
If they wanted to do this, they realized they couldn’t just settle for product photos. They needed a color-matching service where experts could review a customer’s photo and recommend the right product to buy.
Pura Vida Gives Customers a Voice
Jewelry company Pura Vida thrives on customer feedback. Their website is full of customer stories, reviews, ratings, and testimonials.
Left on Friday Takes the Guesswork Out of Sizing
It’s tough to find the right size when shopping for swimwear because there are a lot of different variables, like the type of fabric, the cut, and the style of the suit. The online swimwear brand Left on Friday wanted to create an extensive Fit Guide for their customers. This makes the process of shopping online less confusing and less awkward.
Inez Lets Shoppers Try Two for the Price of One
When buying shoes online, it can be difficult to determine what size to purchase. The Bloomingdale’s salespeople were not allowed to open a second box of the same shoe in a different size, so Tony decided to open his own store. While Tony Musso was working on the floor of the Bloomingdale’s shoe department as part of his market research, he discovered that buyers frequently asked if they could try shoes in two different sizes. Since Bloomingdale’s salespeople were not allowed to open a second box of the same shoe in a different size, Tony decided to open his own store.
Farmgirl Flowers Adds Unexpected Extras
“Surprise and delight” is a popular motto for companies who want to improve their customer experience. The team at Farmgirl Flowers agrees with the sentiment that time is precious. This brand has found that a little extra effort can make them stand out from other floral delivery services.
In addition to the unique flowers wrapped in burlap, every time a customer sends a bouquet, they also include a few fun extras for the recipient. These include an enamel pin, a package of cookies, and illustrated instructions on how to make the most of the flowers they’ve just received.
What can you do to make your brand more visible than your competitors? Now that you have these examples in mind, the next step is to brainstorm ways to improve your customer experience strategy.
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