The future of retail is in-store customer experience: brick and mortar isn’t dead

Rapidly developing technology will continue to play a role in a business’s customer experience, however, it shouldn’t do away with one-on-one customer contact and personalised service. Especially as generation Z (or the “future shoppers”) still love shopping in-store.[1]

While consumers are increasingly making more purchases online, many retailers still rely on their stores as an integral of their brand identity, to drive sales, and achieve customer loyalty. People are searching for personalised shopping experiences they can rely on and connect with.

Chris Bell, managing director of Customer Experiences, says if Kiwi businesses are to survive and compete in the fast-paced competitive world of the future, customer experience is critical – both in-store and online – but many aren’t prioritising creating personal experiences for customers.

“The reality is physical stores alone don’t cut it anymore for consumers. You need to give them an experience and reason to return, visit your website, like your Facebook page, or sign up to your email marketing.

“To achieve an exceptional customer experience, businesses need to exceed expectations, not just meet them. Customer satisfaction doesn’t create loyalty, exceeding customer’s expectations does. And every good business owner knows it’s more cost-effective to retain customers than to constantly search for new ones.”

Implementing a successful customer experience strategy and creating a genuine emotional connection with your customer will increase a business’s bottom line, says Chris.

“Your business will gain a huge advantage over competition, it will significantly encourage repeat purchases from your customers, and increase a shopper’s basket size. You’ll foster a team and customer focused culture which will encourage innovation and creativity from staff. All of this will reduce staff turnover and reduce customer complaints.”

One of Customer Experiences key clients, Central North Island marine retailer Terv Terry Marine is one of those rare businesses where complacency is not an option when it comes to customers. They continuingly invest in the development of their customer experience, ensuring customers are receiving greater value from a team that is highly motivated to share their expertise and passion for the pleasure of boating.

Chris explains, “the result of this commitment to both their team and customers is gaining Trev Terry Marine a national reputation for a quality, value added customer experience. The impact this approach is having on both business growth and profitability is motivating continued investment in both team professional development and the creative ideas that flow from within the business and from customers.”

Chris is launching a workshop, “Exceeding Customers’ Expectations” which kicks off in Taupo this July. It’s a highly interactive one-day programme that is designed to give participants the knowledge and skills required to be customer experience leaders.

ENDS

Workshop details:

Where: Tauhara Centre, Taupo

When: 17th July 2018 .8.30am – 5pm5pm

Cost: Earlybird special, $399 before 29th June or $450 + GST

Further Central North Island dates to be announced.

About Chris Bell:

Chris Bell is Managing Director of Customer Experiences, a company that specialises in helping businesses improve the way in which they interact with customers and clients. chris@customerexperiences.co.nz; www.customerexperiences.co.nz

[1] As demonstrated in a recent report from AMP Capital

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