Retail and Customer Experience : News & Best Practices

Customer satisfaction: how to innovate and build loyalty in the specialized retail sector

Faced with growing competition from internet pure-players and volatile customers who are becoming less and less loyal to their local brands, specialized retailers must learn to innovate and stand out by providing top-notch services throughout their stores: advice, expertise and customer focus are key!

Customer satisfaction: increasingly driven by in-store services

Customer experience and services provided in-store play an important role for customers when choosing a specialized retail brand. The expertise and support provided in-store during purchase are particularly appreciated by customers in highly specialized fields such as IT, DIY, sports goods or furniture, where they frequently need advice and reassurance. In such areas, product knowledge is vital to trigger a sale.

Both passionate about the products they are selling and experienced in their scope of application, the increase of seller/advisers in specialized retail stores such as Ikea, Sports Direct or Homebase, is proving quite the trend. In DIY stores, a seller’s advice on how to build a terrance or install a stretch ceiling almost systematically results in the sale of the products required for the task.

But how can brands evaluate the customers’ appetite for such services and how can they encourage sellers to invest more energy in the wellbeing of their clients in-store?

Collecting customer feedback:  a worthwhile investment for better understanding customer needs and building loyalty

More and more specialized shops and large retail stores are using customer feedback systems to gather instant feedback, ratings and reviews, with encouraging results. Customized customer satisfaction surveys can indeed result in ultra-qualified data in real-time: which isles are customers the least pleased with and why? Do after-sales services fulfil their expectations? Does the advice given by in-store teams meet their needs? 

Quality of service, ability to listen, attentiveness, advice given, cleanliness of the store…customers no longer hesitate to leave feedback about anything that stands out in a good or bad way, and thus allow brands to quickly readjust their services if anything seems wrong.

The views gathered can be used as key indicators of the perception customers have of each point of sales and allow them to make adjustments to the products and services offered as well as to the quality of service provided in store. Moreover, customer dissatisfactions can be processed in real-time and customer attrition is therefore highly reduced.