We have all heard about Mystery Shopping, but can we really use it to make extra cash and how can we go about it? Here are some tips and suggestions to shop for free:
Customer service is one of the main aspects a customer will judge a business on.
It is your responsibility, as the business owner, to deliver the service a customer expects from using your products/services.
Earlier this year, a colleague of ours’ son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.
Due to this, his mother must test his blood every 2 hours leading to the two of them being unable to enjoy a full night’s sleep.
We discovered that they were able to purchase a continuous glucose monitor retailing for £750, as this is not available through the NHS, we set on a fundraising mission.
What determines the true cost of poor customer service? The short answer is that there isn’t an equation to help determine how much you are losing by poor customer service.
No two customers or businesses are the same but the negative impact of producing poor customer service can be similar, if not the same.
For each customer that is lost from poor customer service, you lose new customers that could have been referred to you. Along with that, your brand’s reputation could be damaged and brand loyalty. This will further negatively impact your performance and profits.
It is possible that in some point of your life you’ve been standing in a queue at a retail store next to a mystery shopper.
They’ll be hard to spot, seemingly shopping for a night out for essentials, but what they are doing is taking mental notes of the stores’ appearance, cleanliness, and service of the store.
There are roughly 50,000 mystery shopping trips carried out every month in the UK, as stated by the Mystery Shopping Providers Association (MSPA), and as more and more spending takes place online, the demand for mystery shoppers is increasing.
Ensuring that your customers are receiving a consistent experience across all channels is important for them to form a positive connection with your brand.
A great brand experience is ultimately down your customer’s satisfaction with each channel of you brand, including your website, branding, employee interaction and atmosphere but bad experience with any one of those channels has the possibility to ruin the customer’s view of your brand as a whole.
It is easier on some channels that others to control the experience the customer will have. As your website, app and marketing will be entirely under your control and are offering lots of data and feedback opportunities, you can make sure that your customers are receiving great interactions on those channels. It can be difficult, however, to keep up that same consistency in physical stores.
Are you a fan of shopping? And giving your opinion about shopping experiences? Are you older than 18? Then you are eligible to sign up to be a mystery shopper with Retail Maxim!
We are always seeking honest, unbiased, observant shoppers to join us and make anonymous store visits, and share their findings through the completion of a survey. Local businesses that you are visiting may choose to incorporate some of the feedback for quality control and staff training purposes.
When applying to become a mystery shopper, you will be asked for basic contact details, and the stores you will likely need to visit.
Does customer service hold the key to your business success?
Having a bad experience with customer service is never positive; it only puts you off returning to a business because of said service. Maybe you’ve encountered someone with a poor attitude or you’ve had someone speak to you in an offensive manner on the phone: regardless of what it is, you’re more likely to go elsewhere if you’re feeling let down by a business. But, if bad customer service will push customers away, can implementing good service help draw them back to your business? Find out in our latest blog.
How can you increase customer loyalty and what are the benefits of this?
When you’re analysing the overall quality of your customer service, a vital indication of great service is customer loyalty. Customer loyalty is exactly what you think it means; having a group of customers who are loyal to the brand, so they’ll recommend to others and do repeat business. A study recently revealed the a massive 68% of customers leave a brand or service simply because that suffer a bad experience with the company in one way or another. This customer will, on average, talk about their bad experience with around 8 people, but this can stretch to a considerable 25. It’s more common for a customer to talk about bad experiences than good ones.
Retaining customers through loyalty
The first major benefit of providing good customer service is maintaining a high level of customer retention. It’s common knowledge that if you make a customer happy, they’ll return multiple times to do repeat business. For this to become common practice in your business, you’ll need to have well-trained customer service reps who can deal with issues and handle questions on a one to one basis, as this will ensure that their needs are met. Customer service reps who listen to their customers will go a long way in terms of customer appreciation; even if the problem isn’t solved right away, it’s beneficial to the customer as they’re happy that you’re trying to fix their problem.
Improve your employee retention to see the benefits
If you have a good team of customer service reps, who understand that they’re the representation of the company on a one to one basis, then you’ll be more likely to communicate effectively with customers over the phone and face to face. If you deliver the correct training on how to deal with phone calls, you’re more likely to increase employee retention.
Save money through brand ambassadors
Having great customer service can relieve a lot of pressure on your company to attract new customers. Delivering great service will give you a massive helping hand in attracting new clients, as word of mouth is one of the most popular ways of generating business. When you impress a customer and give great service, they’ll tell their friends about your company, so not only are you delivering great service, you’re also moulding your current customers into brand ambassadors, free of charge!
We hope you have a wonderful Christmas, from all of us here at Retail Maxim!
Is poor customer service in retail leading to lower sales in the sector?
The retail sector is one of the most used avenues of customer service worldwide, as customer interaction is more common with staff of the big brands compared to various other industries. Though it’s one of the biggest customer service sectors, companies on the high street seemingly suffer from poor levels of customer service. So, what can be done to combat this and if nothing is done, what effects can it have on the customer service industry?
Big brands on the high street are suffering from customer service woes whilst their online counterparts are enjoying continued growth. What can companies do to ensure survival in an ever fierce battle between the high street giants for customer service dominance? What makes a loyal customer?
Below we give you 4 top reasons to that’ll keep a customer coming back for more, ensuring that a customer stays loyal to your brand.
Be sure to monitor and analyse all forms of customer feedback
Mystery shopping is completely designed around doing just this. Need to monitor how your staff are performing in store? Just how helpful are they to the customers that visit you most? Find out all of this and more through our mystery shopping scheme. We can deliver over 10 different forms of customer service analysis, from video mystery shopping, to phone call analysis, exit surveys and more! It’s the best way to gain an insight into what your loyal customers think of you.
Consistency of information is key
Your customers will often call you for an information query, so be sure that you’re giving them consistent information across the board. There’s no point telling one customer one thing and relaying a different message to another: consistency is key. Your levels of consistency can be monitored by our telephone mystery shoppers. It’s a great way to see how you’re performing!
Give answers in a precise and timely manner
Have you made it easy for your customers to find vital information at the drop of a hat? It’s a good idea to have an FAQ section of your site (pictured) as it will usually answer all of the questions that could be asked by your customers. This will reduce customers calling up your store, so it’s a good way of keeping the communication process open without having to speak with your customers directly.
Customer service should be available anytime, anywhere, regardless of the platform that it’s being delivered on. Offer a multi channel service to all which allows a wider audience to interact with you!
What do you think of our ideas? We want to hear from you in the comments below! For more on customer service and mystery shopping, please visit our website.
Mystery shoppers can give you a service unlike no other, but why use it?
Mystery shoppers are, quite simply, those who carry out the services of improving customer service for companies across the world. Acting as a customer, they test the customer service department as some form of auditor. Mystery shoppers worldwide carry out tasks at the places of business, on a company’s website or simply over the phone.
Unlike most real customers, these mystery shopping professionals are trained to look for specific qualities in the customer service that they’re analysing. They measure the qualities in your customer service representatives, offering feedback on the level of customer service that they receive, giving suggestions that raise the bar on customer satisfaction levels.
With these handy tips below, we help you determine whether mystery shopping is a step in the right direction for your business:
What are the benefits of mystery shopping?
Before you sign up for a mystery shopping programme, you should consider what the benefits would be to your company. Work out what exactly you’d like to reap from the process. Some of the benefits of mystery shopping vary, but here’s what’s included:
• A different perspective! You’ll gain the ability to view your business through the eyes of the customer, learning just what your clients think of you at first impression. This is the only way to gain this perspective, as trying to gain this from someone within your company won’t convey as effectively.
• An overview of your customer service! A gifted mystery shopper can tell you what exactly works in your customer service programme and what doesn’t, allowing you to make the relevant changes.
• A spot on evaluation of what your customer service offers. Mystery shoppers will display whether your employees offer a valuable customer service experience, allowing your employees to earn the correct skills, providing a positive impression on your clients.
Mystery shoppers can accurately assess the state of your customer service, finding which area of your customer service should be corrected in your customer experience. This allows for you to fine tune any deficiencies that exist in your staff training.
Starting a mystery shopper program
Given the benefits above sound like something you’d wish to incorporate into your customer service experience, it’s time to start your mystery shopping program! Take these steps in order to get ready for the experience:
• Tell your employees that you are starting the program, just to make sure that they don’t feel blindsided after the program takes place. Tell them it’s not something they’re doing wrong, rather a training tool for could be used to raise the level of service offered by your staff.
• Discover what you want to get out of the mystery shopping service. Setting particular benchmarks will allow for you to monitor just how well your program is going.
• Find out which mystery shopping service will best meet all of your needs and budgets. For example, you can hire a larger company that can operate in a number of outlets nationwide but this isn’t exactly necessary if you have just one store.
Mystery shopping can be used as one of the most effective ways to evaluate your current state of customer service that’s available to your audience. A professional in the mystery shopper service will give your company guidance in ways to raise the standards of your employees, giving you a level of service that pleases all.
For more on mystery shopping programs, please visit our website.