Retail Clienteling: the key for retailers to boost sales and improve customer service
A recent study suggests that many retailers remain either unwilling or unable to provide personalized customer service solutions for their clients.
The study released by Yes Lifecycle Marketing examines retail stores across a wide variety of industries and provides a data that suggests that there is significant room for businesses to grow.
Many of the retailers evaluated for the purpose of this study aren’t doing enough to take advantage of valuable customer information that can be used to find new leads and make sales.
Shoppers are getting in touch with companies and products in more ways than ever. Whether they are shopping on their cell phone, their computer or actually coming into the physical retail location, businesses have the opportunity to learn a significant amount about their customers and what they are looking for.
By properly collecting and interpreting this information, businesses can provide personalized marketing and customer service.
The consumer is served advertisements of products that they are more likely to want or have already been looking at. That being said, the conversion of these sorts of advertisements are much higher than traditional marketing and customers’ time is not wasted by ads that are not relevant to them.
According to Yes Lifecycle Marketing senior manager Anthony Pauley, retailers are struggling. These businesses are struggling to differentiate “themselves from their competition and [to identify] and [understand] who their best customers are. Clienteling can help address these challenges upfront,” he said. “By leveraging omnichannel customer data to create a more personalized in-store experience, retailers can better engage their customers and greatly increase customer loyalty.”
What does this look like practically? Just to make this all a little bit easier to digest, clienteling can be accomplished in three rather straightforward steps.
First, you must realize that your technology is absolutely critical if you want to take advantage of this wildly successful marketing technique. For many businesses, this will not be a core competency. Make sure that you hire the right database manager or team to help collect data and make it useful. Data is power. Don’t be tempted to skimp on this crucial aspect of your business.
Second, make your marketing campaign about your customers.
Most retailers will collect basic consumer information such as name, phone number, purchase history, address, and e-mail. There’s nothing innovative or disruptive about this information. Successful clienteling requires your organization to go deeper, collection a certain piece of data that is currently utilized by less than 20% of all retailers: shopping preferences.
A go-to size or color for each consumer can go a long way in providing relevant product suggestions to consumers. An even lower number of retailers, 13%, have access to their customers’ browsing history. The collection of consumer data from each of these sources will give a substantial boost to your marketing efforts.
Finally, let your customer tell you how to interact with them.
No one likes to be spammed with ads, but at the same time, the occasional e-mail could be very useful to them. How often you should communicate will vary on a customer by customer basis and can be determined by a variety of formulas and algorithms developed by your data scientists.
Your organization might be missing out on a gold mine of consumer data that the customer is willing to freely give away. 26% of shoppers reported providing detailed personal information and shopping habits to sales people.
The process will take a little fine-tuning, but before long you’ll be pleasantly surprised to see how well your marketing campaign is performing!