How to Encourage Retail Loyalty through Clienteling
By Djamel Toubrinet, Director of Marketing, Americas @ Cegid
Are you doing all you can to win customer loyalty? It can be a challenging question to answer in today’s competitive global retail industry. The bar for customer engagement keeps moving higher and higher. Shoppers expect their favorite retailers to anticipate their needs, make helpful suggestions and offer personalized deals. After all, that is the experience they regularly encounter online. Why not in the store too?
Here are just a couple recent statistics highlighting how much consumers care about customer service:
Before they think about buying something, 79 percent of consumers want brands to actually demonstrate they understand and care about them (Wunderman)
47% of European and U.S. consumers will abandon a brand if it repeatedly provides a poor, impersonal or frustrating customer experience (CMO Council)
Retailers know these issues are extremely important. However, there may be some discrepancy between what consumers want and their perception of what retailers are delivering. A Capgemini study found that 75 percent of businesses believe they are customercentric, but only 30 percent of consumers agree.
Leveraging Clienteling Techniques
One sure way to build customer loyalty is to leverage the latest clienteling techniques. Today, this means creating a custom experience for each customer encounter. Of course, even the most talented and experienced sales associate can use an assist from technology to accomplish this. Newer mobile solutions operate on hand-held devices that are discreet, intuitive to use and integrated with the retailer’s broader IT platform. For instance, with tools such as Yourcegid Retail Clienteling, associates see a 360-degree view of the customer’s buying history and preferences so that they can make suggestions to influence future sales and start building stronger relationships.
How does this technology work in practice? Say a loyal customer walks into your store. The clienteling solution identifies that shopper for the associate, who can see that the customer has an item in her online shopping basket. That item happens to be in the store, and so the associate can proactively find the item and invite the customer to try it on. While the client is in the dressing room, the associate can work on creative cross-selling and upselling suggestions and plan customized promotions to close the sale. If the customer decides to buy the item plus other products, her profile is automatically updated within the solution. Personalized follow-up is likely to lead to more purchases and store visits (read story).
Boost Revenues and Individual Store Sales
In addition to creating a positive customer experience, the retailer’s overall revenue and individual store sales are boosted. Moreover, this type of clienteling is an essential part of the transition to omnichannel retail. It provides that critical link between the digital and physical shopping worlds.
At successful retail organisations, executive leaders, store operations managers and store associates all know that winning customer loyalty requires a holistic approach. Today, that means tapping into knowledge about what consumers want, whether they are shopping online or in the store, and then putting our best product and customer service forward to meet their every need.
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