Last week we managed to squeeze in some time for shopping. Sounds very frivolous doesn’t it. But it is vital for us to be able to evolve our research methods. And it enables us to gain first hand insights into the current high street shopping experience.
We’re now analysing the biometric data that we captured. More on that in a later blog post. So here’s a brief heads up on some of our findings. There were huge differences in the quality of the customer experience. We shopped for a variety of different products:
A bath/ beauty gift
Obviously, a car is the most expensive item. (No, we didn’t buy). A cruise is also a large ticket item. (Nope, not going on holiday either). Whereas bubble bath only costs about £4 to £20. Which do you think was the best experience?
It was one in of the cosmetics brands we visited.
We had outstanding service in this cosmetics brand, across several outlets. In fact, one of the CX Lab team said she experienced some of the best customer service she’d everhad. The enthusiasm, energy, and product knowledge of the employees blew us away. Their attention and care for our needs really stood out.
In contrast, our experiences in the travel agents and car experience centres are best described as patchy. We encountered a fair amount of apathy. Whilst employees were polite, they were not enthusiastic. Rarely did they seem particularly interested in us. In the car retail outlets, they frequently failed to ask what car we currently drove. Therefore it was impossible for them to recommend an appropriate model.
Many of the travel agent employees were on the phone. So they couldn’t to speak to walk in customers. Makes us wonder why these companies use an expensive high street retail unit as a glorified office. When we did get to speak to an employee, they tried to direct us to making an appointment at a later time. We didn’t feel inspired by the store environment or by the employees. This is such a missed opportunity. Dreaming about our next holiday is something that most of us find exciting.
We discovered an inverse relationship: the more expensive the product, the worse the customer service. I’d love to swap the staff around! How would the cosmetics store staff get on in the car retailer? I know who I’d rather be served by.