If you are in retail, you are in the front-end of the business industry –the closest to customers. But, then again, you are not alone. Unless you are providing a product or service with an impeccable Unique Selling Point (USP), you would have many rivals racing in the competition to acquire the largest customer base. This is why Customer Experience (CX) has become a prominent tool among large retail organizations and keep customers as close as they are meant to be. 

If you are hoping to integrate CX as a fresh strategy or upgrade your existing CX efforts, here are five key steps for a rewarding success!

1. Focus on Employee Satisfaction to Gain Customer Satisfaction 

Your stellar customer experience strategy cannot be optimized without the support of your employees. Ultimately, they are the ones who are responsible for communicating and engaging with customers to sell the products or services effectively. Unfortunately, large companies often encounter problems like high employee turnover due to coordination issues that leave employees feeling neglected.

So, while you map out ways in which you can reward your clients with a fabulous experience, think of how you can create the incentive among employees to execute those strategies well. 

Equipping them with adequate knowledge, providing sufficient training, implementing performance-related pay schemes, and improving the overall employee engagement within the workplace can help greatly here. You need to let your employee know they are valued, and their roles are acknowledged. Then, they wouldn’t hesitate to walk the extra mile to uplift CX in your business. 

2. Innovate and Renew Experiences More Often

You can give a facelift to customer experience with a fresh strategy but if you don’t make the effort to reinvent constantly, you would lose the competitive advantage soon. It’s important for retailers, especially big companies to change or alter its course of action towards improving CX. 

Changing the ambiance of the store by changing design themes every season or reorganizing the retail space can grant customers a fresh experience. This doesn’t apply only to physical retail stores. Think of the array of changes you can do to your website to make customers feel like they are flipping through the pages of a magazine with fresh content at every turn. Also, focus on how you bring in new discounts and offers and introduce new products often.

3. Prioritize Your Social Media Presence

As the global pandemic has aptly shown, it is very important for retail stores confined to brick-and-mortar spaces to step beyond the convention. Customers struggled to fulfill their day-to-day activities as they were confined to their houses, limiting access to shopping. That’s when eCommerce businesses hit the boom. 

If you haven’t paid attention to engaging with customers online and creating a positive presence, now is the time to do it. Devise innovative ways in which you can connect with customers online, appealing to their preferences and expectations. Social media is also a great platform to let customers know that you acknowledge their pain points and are trying to fix them.

4. Consider Retention and Loyalty as Key Elements 

Focusing on loyalty and retention of your existing customers should be an integral aspect of your customer experience strategy because retail stores, whether smaller or large, always face tough competition. In this regard, acquiring new customers can be tougher, costly, and more exhausting than retaining the existing client base. 

Consider how you can differentiate customer service and enhance customer perceptions about your retail brand. Trying to build a sense of belonging through a community where customers are rewarded with special perks is a good way to start. Make customers feel acknowledged and special through an effective loyalty program.

5. Create A Comprehensive Program for Better Results

A holistic and well-round customer experience strategy is the key to derive the maximum benefits from it. You have to look at ways in which you can fine-tune CX in every way focusing on every touchpoint.  One way to achieve this is by balancing both real and virtual experiences by strengthening in-store and social media engagements and supporting both online and offline customer communities. Also, think about creating an omnichannel presence and integrating digitization to your stores if possible.

In short, it has to be a compelling story and not a mere chapter. That’s how you can create lasting impressions about your brand and boost customer satisfaction.

Ida Salonen is Feedbackly’s Customer Success Manager. She’s an energetic team player with a curiosity for researching and writing about CX and EX. She’s responsible for ensuring that Feedbackly’s customers have everything they need to create winning experience strategies.

business customer experience customer satisfaction customerloyalty retail