If you’re running a retail business, whether it’s based online or in bricks and mortar, a multinational chain or a tiny operation, your customers are the most important thing in the world.
Happy customers come back to you; happy customers spend more and most importantly; happy customers tell their friends about you. Striking the right balance between going all out to please your consumers and actually turning a profit can be a tricky business: sometimes customers don’t like to be reminded that you need money to keep on providing a service!
To help you walk that slim line, you need information. You need to be asking every day “are my customers happy?” and you need to be asking in all the different ways that will get you a full and useful answer. Indeed, simply asking your customers if they’re happy often won’t get you a very helpful reaction.
One thing you can do is measure customer responses to shopping with you: a high level of refunds compared with sales indicates that something could be wrong with the customer journey. It may not indicate a serious problem with your products, simply that people are coming in with an idea of what your products can do for them and finding that the reality doesn’t measure up. In cases like this a subtle change in your messaging can often help close that gap ensure people are happy.
The drawback of this approach is that it’s reactive: you only find out there’s a problem after it’s happened.
Working with a market research can provide you with the vital consumer insights you need to optimise your business for customers, and ensure they have the sort of experience that keeps them coming back. They can use surveys and testing to find out your net promoter score: a vital metric that essentially measures how likely your customers are to recommend your business to their peers.
Many businesses agree that there is no better measure of a successful business: A high NPS drives growth and revenue, and functions as an indicator for all sorts of other issues as well. If your net promoter score is rising or high, you can assume your customer service is excellent, your price point is satisfactory and your branding is doing its job.
If it’s low or begins to fall it indicates it’s time for you to do some more detailed research and diagnose the problem before it’s too late!