Critizr shares secrets of customer conversations with new virtual mall

Morton: creative way for retail executives
to enhance their skills

Customer Interaction Management specialist Critizr has launched a new ‘virtual shopping centre’ to showcase the art of customer conversations, in a bid to help retailers improve their skills and drive lifelong customer loyalty. 

The new microsite allows users to access real life exchanges between staff and customers at some of the leading European retail brands in Critizr’s stable of clients.

An essential read for anyone looking to deliver a world class customer experience, the new interactive tool takes users to the aisles of the likes of Monoprix, Intermarche, Pimkie, Printemps and Courir, to learn their tips and techniques for conversing with genuine customers in an array of different scenarios.  

Critizr hopes that by offering this behind the scenes glimpse into the reality of customer conversations, rather than just the theory, the site will become an inspiring and useful resource for retail executives, with invaluable insight into how best to interact with customers – from questions and compliments to problems and complaints. 

Hazel Morton, who leads Critizr’s marketing in the UK, explained: “One of the biggest challenges for retailers, particularly at the moment, is understanding how to engage with customers, effectively listen to their feedback, and respond in a way that builds lifelong loyalty. The two-step process of feedback and response is no longer relevant. This is about creating real conversations that meet customer expectations and make people feel personally valued. This sounds simple, but for larger retailers with a myriad of channels and potential topics to manage, it can be difficult for staff to know what to say and how to say it in each scenario.

“Critizr’s new virtual shopping centre is a fun and effective way to help. There are great examples in there from every corner of retail, from grocery, DIY and auto repair to fashion and lifestyle brands. Everyone learns best by example, and we hope that we’ve provided a creative way for retail executives to enhance their skills and understanding of what great customer conversations look like, which they can then implement within their wider business.”

Get ready to chat: how to build loyalty through great customer conversations

There has never been a more pressing time to put in place measures to help your staff engage in the right way with customers. New research taken during the pandemic shows us that that more value is placed on human beings in retail – with nearly three quarters saying they would stop shopping with a retailer if people were replaced by technology (Retail Choice June 2020). The local, human touch is what customers want. So what are the most important factors in driving personal conversations across your business?

  1. Every customer, every time: from charming compliments to furious complaints, and everything in between: make sure you respond to every customer enquiry. 
  2. Deal with the negatives: for dissatisfied customers, a large majority simply want to know that you are listening and that the company is striving to solve them. Time spent trying to really understand the customers’ problem will be well spent.
  3. Maximise the positives: neglecting positive feedback is a common mistake.  Remember to thank and reward people for compliments and suggestions – as well as channelling them to staff to boost morale. 
  4. Manage expectations: people communicate at speed so strive for as fast and efficient a response as possible. Set response rates based on your own industry and business size and communicate these to customers. 
  5. Make it personal: use technology to be more human! Customers have come to expect a more personal, empathetic service from retail staff and standardised responses make them feel like a number.
  6. Make it seamless: factor in the increasing number of conversations taking place online. If your processes are currently disjointed, make urgent changes to deliver a pain-free process for your customers.
  7. Empower local teams: find ways to respond to ‘always-on’ customer demands. Devolve CX power to local teams so they can manage conversations at local level, build personal connections and take swift action. Technology means they can be looped in and empowered to become CX champions in their own outlets. 
  8. Take action: think about this process as a loop, with every customer conversation making something happen that drives positive, company-wide benefits – fixing a problem, winning back a dissatisfied customer, generating insight into a new trend, rewarding staff, or making a business critical change to the way you operate. 

Click here to visit the Critizr virtual shopping mall