The Retail Customer: More Than a Transaction
What differentiates your store from your competitors – who, like you, have a great social media strategy, offer great discounts and sales promotions, and strive for great customer service? The difference is a focus on creating a customer-centric business that sees each customer as more than just a transaction.
For those who enter your store, having a great experience requires employees to do more than acknowledge their presence, check them out at the cash register, and collect their email information so you can send them upcoming sales promotions. As Robin Lewis and Michael Dart explain in The New Rules for Retail, consumers aren’t always looking to buy things – they’re looking for experiences. As they put it, “Consumers do not need ‘stuff’ anymore. There’s too much of it, all equally compelling.” Instead, retailers “must be able to understand and figure out how to deliver some kind of emotionally connecting experience” in order to win them over (63).
People desire personal connection. Those retailers who have equipped their employees to see, hear, understand, and acknowledge the unique needs of those walking through their doors will positively affect loyalty and repeat business.
There is no single best strategy to providing these experiences, as the effectiveness of a strategy is dependent on the type of brand or retailer. However, it goes beyond just eye contact and letting customers know staff is available if help is needed. They’ve shopped enough times to already understand that. Instead, retailers must effectively mobilize their employees to provide relevant, targeted interactions with customers. By doing so, they can provide the type of holistic experience that could never be attained online.
Retailers understand they must invest heavily in their sales staff to have a successful store. However, they might not always understand how effective their staff is at converting browsers into buyers and contributing to the customer experience. Through our in-store analytics, ShopperTrak is giving retailers even deeper insight into the store. Retailers now have the tools to track the degree and effectiveness of consumer assistance, enabling them to target those areas that need improvement.