Using Technology to Get Consumers to the Store

Posted on July 19, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

No one doubts the claim that the Internet and rise in mobile technology hasn't transformed the retail industry. It's the thought that people are no longer making trips to the stores that should be up for debate. The truth is that people still shop in stores. Technology is used to get them there and to make their experience more enjoyable so they keep coming back.

PSFK highlighted some great ideas of how retailers can leverage technology and drive consumers to their stores. For certain retailers, it may be helpful for the customer if they post wait times, store maps and inventory lists on their website. Google has launched an initiative to begin posting pictures of the insides of places on Google maps. Retailers can set up an appointment with Google photographers to get their interior shot and added to the Google places site. In the meantime, stores can post updated interior photos themselves and even set up a web cam so customers can watch a live stream of the store's activity any time they want. This way, customers can time their visits based on whether they think the photos and videos show it's a good time for them to shop.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

The Future of Retail is Still the Store

Posted on July 16, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

According to a recent study by the U.S. Census Bureau, the majority of sales still come from in-store purchases. Certain categories, such as books, clothing and electronics, see high percentages of e-commerce sales, but the overall message for retailers remains the same before the rise of the Internet: attention to the physical store should be a top priority in an effort to attract and keep customers.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

Wal-Mart™s Project Impact has a Positive Impact on Sales

Posted on July 14, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

Wal-Mart remains the worlds™ largest retailer, even after cutting back on the amount of items stocked on its shelves.

The retailer that boasted more than $400 billion in store revenues in 2009 launched a store remodeling initiative named Project Impact in an effort to boost efficiency and sales. The project started in 2008 and is on track to have reached about 32 percent of its stores by the end of 2010. Forbes reports that the remaining stores should be remodeled by 2014.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

It Pays to Have Good Customer Service

Posted on July 9, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

The American Express Global Customer Service Barometer reveals 61 percent of 1,000 American consumers surveyed value quality customer service amid economic instability and will spend 9 percent more at a retailer that offers it.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

It's a Woman's Retail World According to One Expert

Posted on July 7, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

Retail guru Paco Underhill cares about what women want so much so that he wrote an entire book on the topic. What Women Want: The Global Marketplace Turns Female Friendly tells a story of how smart businesses are changing to fit the needs of women, a growing group that often already makes up more than half of their customers.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

ICC President & CEO David Rich to Speak at In-Store Marketing Summit

Posted on April 16, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

David Rich, President & CEO of ICC/Decision Services, will speak at the sold out In-Store Marketing Summit next week. Appearing with Jim Fuqua, Director of In-Store Experience at SUPERVALU, David & Jim will look at how to measure and impact the true ROI of every program; and how to engage and delight shoppers (and retail partners) every time. Want to know how are you "measuring up" when it comes to executing in-store demos and retail events and who is best in class? David will show examples of who is excelling and who is falling short and why; and will share recent analytics commissioned by ICC/Decision Services exclusively for the In-Store Marketing Institute measuring the in-store experience over a 90-day period in supermarket and mass merchant channels nationwide.

The In-Store Marketing Summit is the premier educational conference for agencies, CPGs, retailers and P-O-P producers looking to improve their retail marketing strategy.

Read More

Topics: News

Pret A Manger...They Get It...Few Others Do

Posted on April 15, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

"My name is Evan Georges. I am the Manager at this Pret Shop."

Read More

Topics: Blog

Customer Experience Synonymous with Operating Strategy

Posted on January 18, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

When you hear the term "customer experience", what is the first thing you think of? Many think of marketing or sales, but how many think of operating strategy? Others immediately think of the expense of running a customer service department. What is often missed is the growth potential and stability of adopting the customer experience into every operational function and decision.

This story on CRM.com discusses the subtle, but very important differences achieved in giving the customer experience a high profile in your day-to-day operations. Here are a few of the major points:

It is true that the customer experience has a lot to do with sales and marketing, but to limit it to these silos is to miss the larger point. Everyone in your organization is a touch point to the consumer.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

Making the Promises Real in 2010

Posted on January 11, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

Many are seeing 2009 as a breakthrough year for efforts designed to raise the profile of the customer experience. There is growing evidence that the everlasting pledge to put the customer first actually got beyond lip service and into real and actionable tactics. With the progress made last year, even in very tough economic circumstances, 2010 should see the movement gain even more momentum.

An article on retailcustomerexperience.com offers the following advice as brand marketers and retailers continue to travel down this road:

"Drop the executive commitment facade." Executives need to "put their money where their mouth is" with time, treasure and talent. If it's a real priority, they will manage customer experience like they do financial results.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

One Size Does Not Fit All

Posted on January 4, 2010 by Nanette BrownComments

Opinions are being weighed from all over the globe as brand marketers and retailers look forward to the economic upturn in 2010 and beyond. The big question seems to revolve around the customer experience. Is price the driving factor or is there value in truly great service? The answer is that "it depends."

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

Social Marketing, The Perfect Storm

Posted on December 28, 2009 by Nanette BrownComments

Social networking has enabled consumers to move faster than the brands that they shop for. Mark down 2009 as the year when brand marketers experienced a full frontal realization that social networks are, in fact, a mass communications medium. With this realization comes another wake up call, Social Marketing must play a big role in the overall marketing mix. As Jeremiah Owayang writes in a recent Forbes article, "Brands need to develop a strategy and a plan to respond--not simply react--to the latest technology."

Like many others in recent days, Owyang takes a look at the trends of 2009 that drive the decisions of the future. He identifies four key trends that senior marketing execs should give some thought to.

"The Recession Spurred Consumers to Adopt Social Technologies." It's not just the enabling technology that caused the movement. Hard financial times also drive people to connect to one another. High unemployment levels also contribute by giving people more time to connect. Motive, means and opportunity equals the perfect storm.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

Customer Experience Stories of the Year

Posted on December 24, 2009 by Nanette BrownComments

In our last entry we warned you about the coming onslaught in this, the season of lists. Today, we look at another one on retailcustomerexperience.com called the, "The 5 biggest retail customer experience stories of 2009." This list is predicated on the observation that consumers' relationships with brands has changed significantly in 2009. Only in the New Year will we find out if these changes are permanent. Here are the stories offered up in the list.

"An emphasis on value." Walmart was the big winner in 2009. Their approach defined the term "value" as being synonymous with "saving money."

"Private label brands take center stage." It's no surprise that consumers turn to store brands during tough economic times. However, this time around appears to have staying power as half of the consumers polled said that they found the product better than expected and 41 percent said that brand names are not worth the money.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

Customer Service is the New Marketing

Posted on December 22, 2009 by Nanette BrownComments

The end of the current year and the beginning of the new always bring many different kinds of lists: wish lists, shopping lists, resolutions, top stories of the year lists, etc. This story in Small Business Trends offers up a list of things to look forward to in 2010. It calls the customer experience the, "new marketing," and the, "only truly sustainable competitive advantage." Here are a few items from the story:

The coming year will be a good one for marketers to imprint upon their employees who interact with customers. Why? High unemployment levels will encourage employees to hold onto their jobs by being good at them. They will try harder.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

The Loyal Shopper Principle

Posted on December 21, 2009 by Nanette BrownComments

Pareto's Principle states that roughly 80% of effects come from 20% of the causes. In modern times, that's been altered by many to mean 20% of the people do 80% of the work. A recent study by Concept Shopping, Inc. has found that the thoughts of old Vilfreto Pareto and his observations may extend to shopper loyalty.

A story in Progressive Grocer reports on an analysis of over 2 million grocery shoppers. The results are that 10% of the store customers visit the store over twice a week and are responsible for almost 40% of the store's total sales. These customers spend over $39 on each visit.

Read More

Topics: Customer Experience

How Fresh and Easy Listened to the Customer

Posted on December 18, 2009 by Nanette BrownComments

Tesco's Fresh and Easy concept in the U.S. provides a vivid example of a company listening to the customer and making almost immediate adjustments based on that feedback. It has been almost two years since the stores started to appear on the West Coast. In that time, the company has, "done a lot of listening to customers." This interview with Steve Ryder, Store Design & Planning Director at Fresh & Easy Tesco's US operation, outlines some of the activity.

Based on customer feedback, 60 stores engaged in a re-fresh program in which stores were made more inviting and informative. Additional banners, more messages and more color was used to address what the customers were calling a "sterile" environment that made the stores appear to be "too discount" for the U.S. shopper.

Read More

Topics: Blog

Customer Experience Update