In typical form, our Ohio weather changed from 90s to the 40s in just a few days. After getting back to my “normal” size after pregnancy, I needed to update my wardrobe, so I went to the store in search of a sweater (or three). After visiting multiple stores, I eventually left empty handed – upset, and aggravated.
The truth is I don’t get out often. On this particular day I did not have the kids with me and I was looking forward to a great shopping experience. But it didn’t happen – and I’m sure you are wondering why my mission ended with such an abject failure.
The stores I visited, were all understaffed, and couldn’t handle the volume of customers at the checkout in a reasonably timely manner. I got so fed up in one store that I just put down the stuff I was intending to buy, and walked out. Added to that, the way many of the staff represent the store just doesn’t cut it for me. Their appearance is messy, they have no makeup, and generally have a “just rolled out of bed” look to them. It’s no wonder that more and more retail is moving online. Besides who doesn’t love sipping a glass of wine or having a cup of coffee while browsing Amazon, Ebay or Etsy? You can shop in your pajamas, there are no parking issues, or irritating lines at the checkouts. But on the other hand, particularly at this time of the year, I do miss the Holiday Spirit – the music, smells and lights.
But wait, let me get back to my shopping experience.
It seems that Gen Z has taken over the retail workforce, and call me picky, but employing a 16 year old girl in a store that services women in the 40+ age bracket probably isn’t the best plan. Your clients and customers should at least be able to relate to your staff.
So how does this affect you?
You may not realize it, but your staff are an integral part of your brand. In short, the way they act, speak and dress are a reflection of you, and in today’s hyper competitive business environment, we all have to do everything we can to keep customers happy so that they return and continue to give us their business.
If we looked into your business, what are you doing to ensure a great customer experience and hence, returning customers?
Here are some simple tips to follow to help you retain your clients and customers:
- Choose staff with good communication and people skills – no one wants to deal with staff that are more interested in their phones than your customer service problem, or people that don’t understand (or worse, care about) your issue.
- Make staff dress appropriately. If you are working at Banana Republic don’t look like you work at Hot Topic, but equally, if you are an employee of a CPA or law firm, don’t show up to work in shorts and flip flops.
- Don’t just have good staff, have ENOUGH good staff. We are all so used to instant gratification, that waiting for anything really gets us worked up.
- Have weekly or monthly meetings with employees to go over objectives and set reminders of company policies.
- Offer training sessions by managers or outside companies to help educate employees on all of these areas. It is important for staff members to have company and product/services knowledge.
These may seem like “common sense” tips, but after my shopping experience, you would not believe the number of companies that broke almost all of these.
If you need any assistance in any of these areas, please don’t hesitate to email us at email@example.com or call (440) 385-6737 and we can help guide you and your company on how to create a better customer experience and improve retention.