Outstanding Customer Service & Rock-Solid Customer Loyalty
Some of you may read this post and say, "Big deal, I'm already doing that." If so, then I say, "It is a big deal. Congratulations on being a successful retailer and knowing how to treat the customer."
Rhode Island Road Trip
I took my 83-year old mom shopping for shoes. She lives near Providence and she has plenty of shoe-store shopping options. Saturday was our day. I drove 65 miles to bring her to this independently owned, single-store shoe store. They wowed her 20 years ago and they continue to wow her (and build customer loyalty) with their product knowledge and service. In the past, she was buying shoes for comfort and style (in that order), now she's buying shoes to fit a foot condition so it's more of a need. Not orthopedic shoes, just shoes that are designed with enough room to accommodate a toe with a mind of its own.
tip 1: Update your customer information while tendering the sale at point of sale. And don't forget to ask a 'senior' if they have an email address.
I arrived at the 2,000 sf store and needed a minute to get the lay of the land. No one jumped me before I got both feet past the threshold (a pet peeve of mine) and asked, "Can I help you?" There were about 20 customers and a total of 6 staff ready to answer questions and find the perfect fit.
tip 2: Make sure the email address is their 'primary' email address. Often times you'll get an email address that isn't routinely checked. So, by telling them that you'll send them 'preferred customer' sale info, etc., you're more likely to get the coveted primary email address.
My mom selected two styles from the display and asked for a dainty size 9 1/2. The shoe sales person stared at her feet for a moment and told her she was more like a size 9. She politely disagreed; he then took out his handy shoe-fitting tool. He measured both feet and reported that she was in fact, a size 9. He delivered her two selected shoe choices. After trying them both on and walking around the store, she made her decision based on fit and style preference. He strongly suggested she consider the other shoe as that had the kind of room her independent toe would immediately need. She whispered to me before acquiescing, "That's why I come here; they know what they're doing." tip 3: Since your customers do have options where to spend their money, try saying, "Thank you for coming today" at some point during their time in the store. Mean it (as if you wouldn't?) and the sincerity will resonate. Dare to be different; they'll remember it.
We left the shoe store, they with two new customers: me-impressed with how the seasoned sales guy handled the sale and my husband with a 9W pair of Allen Edmonds.
I'll be back though, for those FitFlops.