Posted by: StoreForce on January 19, 2022 in Employee Engagement, Store Execution, Thought Leadership, Workforce Management
Capture MINDSHARE By Providing Consistent Customer Experience
“Capture the mindshare – that is, the heads, hearts, and loyalty of others – and the market share will follow.” – Libby Gill
Market share is measured by the total percentage of purchases made by customers with your brand. Mindshare is measured by how often your brand comes first to customers’ minds when they think of your category in the marketplace. Market share is measured through sales value/volume and mindshare is measured through customer loyalty, retention, and repetition.
Retail is a combination of products and services. Products are consumed and services are experienced. In today’s retail landscape, customers choosing between brands are prioritizing experiences above everything else. Providing the right customer experience becomes the most important factor in achieving customer loyalty. According to the latest data published by Forbes, 73% of consumers say a good customer experience is key in influencing their brand loyalty. Research done by Harvard business school, suggests that increasing customer retention by 5% improves your sales by 25-95%, depending on the industry. As a result, it has become critical for the retail industry to start working toward delivering the right customer experience and achieve growth in business KPIs like customer loyalty, retention, and repetition.
In this era of retail digital revolution, what one might mean by “customer experience” can be misunderstood. The “customer experience” isn’t just referring to in-store digital installations like an interactive mirror in the fitting room, a fancy multi-sensory display fixture, or an automated styling unit. Even though these digital interactions provide a wow factor to customers at that time, a great customer experience is a combination of well-run, well-staffed, and well-presented stores. Let us see how.
Stores Must Be Well-Run
As per recent research done by ICSC, a brand’s digital sales within a particular geographic area are directly impacted by the presence or absence of a physical store within that same area. This means retail is no longer limited to the four walls of a store, but can interact with the market throughout various retail channels:
- Providing store teams visibility into both, physical and digital sales
- Providing seamless communication between the stores and headquarters
- Providing an opportunity for employees to work at multiple stores
- Measuring store performance in the market by geo-locating digital sales to their respective stores
- Enabling sales leadership teams with the right tools to execute consistent customer experiences
Stores Must Be Well-Staffed
A store must be well-staffed at all times to ensure there’s a consistently positive customer experience. What does this mean? According to Forbes, 68% of customers say that the sales associate is imperative to a positive customer experience. Stores are run by sales associates, so it’s very important for retailers to manage them optimally by implementing effective operational practices. A well-staffed store has the right number of associates available with the right skills to serve customers at the right time. How can you ensure this?
- Analyzing sales and traffic patterns to identify peak business opportunities
- Scheduling top performing employees and sales leaders on the shop floor during peak hours
- Providing in-the-moment coaching to the team
- Driving employee engagement by celebrating successes to motivate others
Stores Must Be Well-Presented
Customers expect consistency. When they walk into a store in Portland and they have a positive experience, they will expect the same look, feel, and experience, when they walk into a store in Philadelphia. The look and feel contribute to the experience, along with the cleanliness, signage, colors, fragrance, and any other unique brand details that should be standardized across all stores within the organization. This can be enforced by:
- Having field leaders conduct effective store visits to ensure adherence to brand standards
- Monitoring completion of assigned tasks
- Provide incentives to promote flawless execution
- Sharing best practices between peers
You Can’t Have One Without the Other
Exceptional customer experience is a must in today’s retail world, and to provide it, stores must support each foundational pillar. “Well-run” contributes to “well-staffed” which contributes to “well-presented”. For specialty retailers, the three concepts work together. You cannot have one running optimally without the others. Often even with the right intention, specialty retailers do not focus on the three pillars of their business together to ensure a consistent brand execution and miss out on business opportunities as a result.
StoreForce is a single solution that delivers on all of these multiple points. The goal is to provide the right customer experience and generate higher mindshare as well as market share. StoreForce is specifically designed for specialty retailers, simplifying complex retail operations and allowing you to execute a seamless customer experience.
As per research done by SAP, Companies that earn $1 billion a year will see an average gain of $700 million within three years after investing in customer experience. Let’s invest it right and gain that mindshare.
Want to learn what else StoreForce can to do accelerate your stores? Give us a call or Contact us to engage with one of our retail experts as to how we can future proof your overall retail store management.
Bliss Gordon is a StoreForce Product Director. Over the past 4 years at StoreForce Bliss has divided his time between growing and fostering relationships with StoreForce clients and on the product side-directing the evolution of StoreForce WFM components. Bliss has a long career in retail. He has worked his way through just about every level of a retail organization from the sales floor to multi-unit field leader to director of operations. This has given Bliss valuable firsthand experience to better serve his clients and anticipate their needs.
Brian Wilson is a Client Engagement Manager at StoreForce. In his role, Brian interacts directly with client resources to identify and support implementing their operational initiatives. He plays a key role in developing and delivering training materials with StoreForce. Brian has a deep passion for specialty retail and has previously held a number of positions for various globally recognized specialty retailers. Within these roles, Brian has developed a strong desire for improving operational efficiencies and strongly values field training support. Outside the office, you can likely find him on a patio enjoying the sun or hitting up a high-intensity spin class.
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