Attack of the Disruptor Brands: 5 Key Lessons for Retailers

Posted on February 9, 2016 by Kevin LeiferComments


They’re fierce. They’re hungry.

And they’re coming for you next.

Disruptor brands, that is. Scrappy startups turned consumer crazes. No one is safe; even the largest, most well-established retailers are running for their lives.

From Dollar Shave Club to Warby Parker to Birchbox, retail disruptors are taking advantage of the current industry landscape and redefining the retail customer experience. They’re challenging once dominant competitors to ramp up the pace of change. And more and more retailers are struggling to keep up.

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Topics: Customer Experience, Brand Experience, Retail, Disruptors

Why Mystery Shopping Is the Key to Better Overall Store Management

Posted on February 4, 2016 by Nanette BrownComments


Measuring Conditions vs. Engagement

A recent post of ours struck a chord with quite a few readers. The question we raised (How can brands excel at both store conditions and customer engagement?) confounds retailers in every category.

Hundreds of times a day, associates must decide where to direct their attention and energy. If managers prioritize the in-store environment, associates will, too.

Customers, meanwhile, are left to do their own thing. A completely forgettable experience. So many opportunities lost!

But this needn’t be the case.

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Topics: Mystery Shopping, Customer Experience

Guest Post: The Expanding Digital Divide Between Consumers And Retailers

Posted on February 2, 2016 by Chris Petersen Ph.DComments


Consumers want it all … but just how much can retailers deliver?

I'm fortunate to have an opportunity to travel to India next week to speak at the Omnichannel India Conclave. It is always a great learning opportunity to visit another country to discover retail trends firsthand. And, India is a fascinating market place, with one of the highest percentage of population under the age of 30. In preparing for this event, I encountered a new perspective that is emerging worldwide. The new retail reality is a growing digital divide between what today's smartphone wielding consumers expect, and what most retailers can deliver. One of the biggest challenges retailers face in 2016 is where to invest when they simply can't do it all. A related question will be how to measure ROI when purchases can now occur anytime and everywhere!

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Topics: Omnichannel

3 Things Your Brand Promise Must Have

Posted on January 27, 2016 by Kevin LeiferComments


Few things irk consumers more than an empty brand promise.

You know the feeling. A brand makes a sweeping claim: “We deliver the best.” However, your own experience with the brand is lousy. When a company promises the moon and falls about 239,000 miles short, you lose patience. You lose faith.

It may feel like that brand promise is . . . mocking you.

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Topics: Brand Experience

Moving beyond service - how do we make a customer's life better today?

Posted on January 20, 2016 by Nanette BrownComments


2015 was an incredible year for retail. New technologies shaped customer experiences allowing brands to compete effectively for customers’ attention and provide amazing experiences. But we’re in 2016, and to make your customer’s life better today, you have to be cutting edge and offer new experiences.

To offer relevant experiences, the kind your customers will appreciate, you need to get to know your customers first and understand what influences them.

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Topics: Customer Experience, Omnichannel, Customer Service

Moving from Reactive to Proactive Customer Experience

Posted on January 13, 2016 by Kevin LeiferComments


A reactive customer experience is the kind that manages customer reactions instead of customer expectations and needs. It’s an outdated approach that aims to mostly put out fires.

Businesses creating a reactive customer experience are usually businesses that believe that investing in experience is an extra cost they can do without. The problem is that when customers complain, it costs more. Here are some numbers that demonstrate why:

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Topics: Mystery Shopping, Customer Experience, Customer Satisfaction, Customer Service, Customer Engagement

Store Conditions vs. Customer Engagement: Are You Managing the Right Things?

Posted on January 6, 2016 by Nanette BrownComments



Store conditions are brand critical. Customers tend to notice them first.

  • The store is clean and tidy.
  • There are no maintenance issues.
  • Merchandise is presented in a fresh, appealing way.

From a retail management perspective, nothing is easier to see, verify, and control.

Perhaps that’s why store managers in every retail category tend to focus on the store environment. They emphasize it, question employees about it, and take stock of it on a daily basis.

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Topics: Mystery Shopping, Customer Experience, Customer Satisfaction, Brand Experience, Customer Engagement

How Does Mobile Fit in Your Customer Experience?

Posted on December 29, 2015 by Kevin LeiferComments


If you haven’t connected with your customers via mobile yet, you’ve missed out on a huge opportunity.

If you’re not going to connect with your customers via mobile in 2016, they’ll move to a competitor who offers an omnichannel experience and who knows how to interact with them.

In-store interactions won’t be enough in 2016. Customers expect that you’ll follow them with each stage of the sales funnel and help them make educated decisions about their purchases. You need to find out how to extend the in-store experience for your customers following a store visit.

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Topics: Customer Experience, Omnichannel, Mobile

Did You Achieve Your 2015 Customer Experience Goals?

Posted on December 23, 2015 by Nanette BrownComments


It’s that time of year again; time to take a critical look back on 2015.

I’m sure that when you planned your last year’s customer experience resolution, you wanted to make a difference this year. The question is, were you able to do that?

To find out how 2015 was for your customers, you’ll have to answer three questions first.

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Topics: Customer Experience, Omnichannel

5 Ways Retailers Can Improve Suggestive Selling by Millennials

Posted on December 21, 2015 by Kevin LeiferComments

Suggestive selling can boost retail revenues significantly. But to succeed at it, you must ask yourself:

  • Are our associates doing all the right things to boost in-store sales?
  • Are we doing all we can to encourage, train, and empower them?

These questions are particularly important for your millennial workforce. There are two reasons for this. First, millennials are now the largest generation in the U.S. labor force, and they will occupy roughly 75% of all jobs by 2030. Second, millennials bring a unique perspective and set of expectations to the sales floor, leading many retailers to change the way they operate.

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Topics: Mystery Shopping, Customer Experience, Suggestive Selling

Customer Experience Update