Ok, we get it. Everyone’s customer expectations are on the rise. People demand exceptional service. So how do retailers keep up? Such a simple question with a complex answer.
As retailers, we’re expected to make the store experience all about customer convenience; shoppers expect to get answers if they have a question from informed associates with access to the right information, they expect something they ordered online to be ready as soon as they get to the store, and they expect to be served in a specific area of the store without pressing a button or waiting for someone to walk by. And let’s not forget about how online customer expectations need to be mirrored on the shop floor. The lines have been blurred between online stores and brick and mortar stores; they are not isolated anymore. Customers need to see continuity between online prices, sales and stock within the physical store.
An article from Small Biz Trends stated the ability to buy from anywhere, anytime, on any device has caused customer expectations to rise — so much so, that most businesses can’t keep up. So, how do retailers keep up? Well, you have to stand out in the changing retail landscape. Simply asking “How can I help you?” isn’t always enough. The in-store experience needs to offer the consumer something unique. Here’s how:
- Anticipate Activity – Wouldn’t it be nice to know exactly when and where you have understaffed departments in your store? Customers would never have to search for an associate for help; they would have someone waiting for them before they even got to that section of you store. Beat your customers at their own game by providing them with customer service they wouldn’t expect just anywhere. It’s not enough to be average or predictable these days, be proactive by addressing this pain point before it even occurs. Going above and beyond expectations is the way to grab new customers and keep old customers faithful.
- Close the Omni-Channel Loop – Of course there’s endless ways customers can buy what they want to buy – whether it be on their phones, tablet, desktop or in the store. But, retail managers can take advantage of their tech savvy customers by using new technology to close loopholes in their seamless omni-channel experience. When a customer orders something online, have it ready to go before they even get out of their car. With the use of beacons, this has never been easier. Customers crave to see this type of service.
- Answer Questions Before they Are Asked – The easiest solution of all; inform your employees. By training them with the right technology, you make sure they can easily answer questions and customers are never left unattended. If a customer has a question, employees can feel confident in the fact that they can use their technology to ask fellow store associates to provide the most up-to-date status on any question asked, which leaves the customer delighted every time. The phrase, “ultimate customer experience” should reflect just that. Make your store the ultimate place to shop.
Now that it’s 2015 and customers are more tech savvy than ever, it’s time to utilize the best technology out there to bring them the best experience they can have. Through technology like FlorLink, instant alerts and communications within the store make it easy to minimize customer pain points and even avoid them altogether. To make it even easier on the retailer, you can link existing technology with the solution so there’s no need to install anything new. The peripheral devices allow the store to be proactive, by allowing employees to anticipate activity, close the omni-channel loop and answer questions before they are even asked.
Yes, the benefits come first to the customer. But, they ultimately provide increased ROI for the retailer no matter what your vertical. Delighted customers are likely to return to your store, which means more sales for you. It’s as simple as that. Happy shoppers will recommend you when you go beyond their everyday expectations of simple convenience. Why not become the key to their happiness by creating a proactive sales floor?
An article from Small Biz Trends stated the ability to buy from anywhere, anytime, on any device has caused customer expectations to rise — so much so, that most businesses can’t keep up. So, how do retailers keep up?