If a customer leaves your business there is a good chance that they’ll never return. The sad fact is that most businesses don’t even know they’ve lost a customer because very few businesses have an effective process or strategy to track customer data and any movement by customers towards their competitors.
An increasing number of enterprises understand the need to customer retention, in fact it’s one of the key strategies for the future success of their businesses. In a survey I conducted of 72 major corporations most of them were saying this was one of their core business strategies for 2005.
Customer Retention Strategy / Mystery shopping
The mystery shopping of customers (dedicated Mystery customers to specific sectors of the business) can provide valuable insights into your store’s performance (an essential step to achieving the success you desire). Mystery shopping can really give a good indication of how your customers are feeling with your business – good or bad:
- The shopping experience/experience at your store will be the perception of your company
- You can use this data to maintain customers who you are already doing business with to increase customer retention;
- You can use this data to find new customers.
- You can use this data to improve customer service through your process
- You can use this data to identify new retail businesses who are a competitor to you and/or will be a threat to employees, suppliers, etc.
- And you can use this data to plan further business growth and new business formation into your business.
Mystery shopping provides a means of understanding customers’ perceptions about your organisation and their perception of your staff – the materials, behaviours and attitudes pose huge opportunities for understanding the potential opportunities for growing your business.
The following often occur duringmystery shopping audits. Importantly, most those behaviours are common ‘not’s – things that can be corrective or avoid, rather than products you are lucky to have – and therefore readily rectifiable.
Armed with this ‘unfamiliar’ data it is easy as 1-2-3 to identify problems:
- Staff making their way through a wardrobe area don’t know what they’re going to be doing or where to start
- Staff members not displaying interest in what customer is talking about
- Staff members using a personalised and pre-agreed list of excuses to leave
- Staff getting surprised when (blank) is observed
So if you can’t identify the problems from your existing customer motives, change your ‘not’s through fixing those areas of analysis.
Let me illustrate to you just how easy is to fix these ‘unfamiliar’ issues.
Not keeping basic information of your customers specific to sales, i.e. their name, address, personal information – just keep it short and simple. There is nothing that is more frustrating and difficult that learning customer’s personal information, especially a first time customer, when they don’t even know it is necessary. Meanwhile you can also visit slot judi to have fun a little bit while reading this article.
Do things that will enable you to fully identify the following data:
- What type of it is, i.e. back-to-back, one trip, customer returns/refuses, customer treatment
- Do you have it recorded? What sort of filing system do the files lie in?
- Does your staff know anything about it?
- What has changed in your store? Have they attended any training in order to upgrade you understanding and services?
- Do you have any customer surveys, specially designed to understand customers’ perceptions on your services or products?
- Do you have some sort of customer relation management system in place to handle those customers who are reluctant to deal with staff?
- Do you have a system in place to deal with customer complaints?
- Do you have a customer loyalty strategy?
- Have you took steps to attract new customers? What is your USP – your Unique Selling Proposition?
- Have you considered which customers you really want to attract, who are the most receptive to your offers and values? And who you need to drop off the market in order to find new ones?
- Do you have a reward scheme attached to your staff?
- Do you have rewards (as in incentives) for outstanding performance?
- Do you reward staff based on sales they bring in – reward staff their profits or their income?
- Does your staff deliver any services with a delivery promise – what dept you go through?
- Do you have a written policy of a handwritten policy – why is this better? And is there a articulation clearly in many places – particularly on staff induction?
- Do you have a written policy for employment that is clear for staff? (old fashioned tape-recording there?)
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