Understanding store team performance through customer feedback data: what questions should you ask your customers?
In this blog series, examining how fast-growing retailers drive continuous improvements in-store via customer feedback, we’ll continue by looking at the question strategy.
Proactively monitoring store team performance has traditionally been tricky for large retail chains. Being able to pinpoint and act to fix issues before they impact the customer – and sales figures for that store – can be a huge competitive advantage. To this end, with the right technologies and question strategy, some forward-thinking Operations leaders are now turning to customer feedback as a reliable method for measuring, managing, and motivating store teams.
If you have questions about the most important questions to ask…TruRating has the answers for you. We’ve been working with Store Operations leaders at a number of enterprise retailers to home in on the elements that really ‘matter’ – i.e., have the biggest impact on customer spend – and, with over half a billion customers having given feedback, we’re here to share some of those insights with you.
Questions to help you uncover what constitutes ‘good’ service in your retail stores
The right questions will allow you to really drill down into which staff behaviors are most likely to make the difference in ‘delighting’ or ‘disappointing’ the customer. We’ve provided examples, but bear in mind that these will vary depending on the type of retail involved. For instance, in Convenience and Grocery, staff availability and friendliness generally matter much more than the consultative approach and depth of product knowledge that customers will expect in some sectors of specialty retail. Consider which of the categories we’ve listed below are more likely to be impactful for your retail sector.
In TruRating’s experience, the involvement of Store Operations in developing the questions from the start is vital – as the business experts in the field, and as key users of the data received. If you’re going to truly understand which store team behaviors most impact the customer – and then be able to monitor and improve each team’s performance against those key metrics – the questions require an operations perspective in the first place.
Additionally, understanding how to word questions to avoid bias in responses is important – your survey program provider should work to help you with this.
Before we look at some examples of those questions, another element is necessary: the ability to easily change and rotate your question set. That way, after establishing a baseline of your customer service performance, you can start to probe into the factors that constitute “good” to your customers, changing up questions as and when issues become apparent. If your customer experience or customer feedback program doesn’t allow you to be agile with the questions, it may be worth a conversation with the provider.
Measure What Matters: The Questions
We’ve dug into our question banks to highlight some of the most effective questions our retailers have used when identifying their own key metrics for measuring store team performance. Consider which customer service-related categories and questions might be most relevant to your retailer vertical. Are there any other questions you’d love to ask your in-store customers?
|Greeting customers||Were you greeted today? When were you greeted today? Were you greeted with a smile today?|
|Staff friendliness||How friendly was the staff today? Did staff make you feel like a valued customer today?|
Once you’ve developed the set of questions you hypothesize will have the strongest associations with the quality of your customer service, you need some way to tie the responses with a financial and operational outcome.
We’ll cover this in our next blog post (stay tuned!)