Now that we have Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Boxing Day and New Years behind us, let’s take a moment to see how those sales might have impacted customer experience.
In a recent study of NICE Voice of the Customer feedback from the retail sector, it would appear that while consumers appreciate the price of goods on sale, they do report a drop in the Customer Experience. One particular NICE Voice of the Customer client reported a drop in 5 NPS points on Black Friday – they achieved their sales goals for the day but missed their customer experience goals. This begs the question, what takes priority, price or the customer experience? It would appear that consumers want both – it is not a choice that the retailer should make. Consumers are accustomed to a level of service, and even on a day like Black Friday, they expect this level of service as well as a good price.
Retailers clearly plan for these times of the year with increased stock and increased staffing but customer feedback tells us they can still go further, with increased visibility of staff throughout the store to be on hand to: tidy the store floor (some clothing outlets look more like a rummage sale and not a fashion retailer); assist customers by answering questions or finding particular items; man the tills and help with queue management and product availability. As well as presenting the face-of-the-brand with a helpful attitude, friendly demeanour (and even a smile).
Your Voice of the Customer program should give you real-time feedback about the customer experience being delivered at the individual store, or at the individual representative, level throughout the year. You can continually improve the service being delivered every day. Then, when it comes to planning for these big infrequent events, learn from previous events or previous years by using the insights gleaned on what went well and what went less well. You are able to define the customer experience you want to deliver throughout the day and execute accordingly. This is what will help you deliver the winning combination of increasing sales and repeat customer transactions from happy customers.
With all the above in mind, these are my five top tips for maintaining your customer experience during key selling events.
- Plan for how you intend to maintain the delivery of a good Customer Experience with the increased footfall (learning from your Voice of the Customer feedback)
- Set a rota to floor walk -to tidy, to interact with customers and generally maintain store presentation standards
- Or appoint a dedicated concierge role to sign-post customers accordingly
- Consciously assess the Customer Experience being delivered throughout the day to make sure you are not swept up by the high intensity of the day (it’s better to reflect hourly instead of in the following days)
- And don’t forget to smile
Lee Mostari works for NICE Voice of the Customer as the lead for the Customer Success Business Consulting division. Lee’s role is to deliver CX consulting engagements with many brands from the Telco, Retail Bank, Insurance and High Street Retail sectors delivering truly transformational initiatives.