CUSTOMER COMMUNICATION

The shop manager continuously receives feedback from customers on their mobile phone app.
The shop manager continuously receives feedback from customers on their mobile phone app.

– This tool will give us a lift

After just one month of everyday training, the ambassador measure (most delighted customers) for Gina Tricot at Bogstadveien is on its way up.

Publisert

Anna Jyrkinen has worked in Gina Tricot's shop at Bogstadveien since 2012 and has been the shop manager for the past four years.

Naturally, they have been working on the customer interaction the whole time, but now they have implemented Maze as a tool for customer feedback.

– Before, how you work in each individual shop was more up to the shop managers. We had our key figures we worked towards and monitored.

Now, customer feedback has become considerably more concrete and specific, she explains to Retailmagasinet.

Selecting three areas of focus

In the Maze app, goals are set for the individual shop. All shops pick three areas of focus

To glean additional information from responding customers. The shop in Bogstadveien has selected the following three:

1. The customer is met with a “hi”

2. How tidy it is in the shop and fitting rooms

3. How the purchase is completed at checkout

Although some of the shop employees were apprehensive when Maze was put to use, none have had any negative experiences.

– The tool was received constructively.

Everyone saw its value. Maze will give us a lift, says the shop manager.

The goal is to find out how to improve as a team, not to find fault with individuals.

Shop manager Anna Jyrkinen at Gina Tricot at Bogstadveien in Oslo states that work on customer feedback has become considerably more concrete and specific with Maze.
Shop manager Anna Jyrkinen at Gina Tricot at Bogstadveien in Oslo states that work on customer feedback has become considerably more concrete and specific with Maze.

All types of feedback

– It’s very useful to see how the customers experienced their visits to the shop, because things aren’t always the way we think they are. We now see more clearly what the customers view as important, says Jyrkinen.

Customers who have made a purchase and who belong to the customer club Spotlight, are sent questions concerning how they experienced their visit to the shop. The feedback may be negative:

“It wasn't very clean and tidy in the fitting room.” “I couldn't find the right size.”

But fortunately, most customer feedback is positive:

“I had a very pleasant conclusion at checkout.”

The customer interaction improves when you work on it daily.
The customer interaction improves when you work on it daily.

– Maze is a good tool for shop managers. I can also pay attention to service when I’m not in the shop myself, Jyrkinen points out.

Sharing experiences internally

Currently, shop managers at Gina Tricot use the Maze app but the plan is for all shop employees to use the Maze app over time.

They also use the internal app Gina Now. Here, Gina Tricot employees can communicate internally, both in each shop and broadly across the entire chain.

– We share what may be of interest to everyone, including screenshots of interesting feedback from customers, says Jyrkinen.

Ambassador measure on the rise

Gina Tricot keeps a close eye on the ambassador measure. Jyrkinen can already affirm that it is on the upward trend for the shop at Bogstadveien, which is consistent with the rest of the retail network.

The key figure confirms that the chain has good number of loyal customers.

– Naturally, the customers’ needs vary between shops, such as between us and a shop in Sandefjord, says Jyrkinen. But loyalty is generally high at Gina Tricot, Anna concludes.

– We have new energy!

– We have new energy!
Hege Hollund is the shop manager for Gina Tricot at Amfi Madla in Stavanger. Photo: Gina Tricot

Gina Tricot at Amfi Madla in Stavanger has been using Maze for customer communication since September. – It was like flipping a switch, says the shop manager.

– It has been an excellent development for our shop. Most store colleagues have worked at the shop for more than eight years. With that’s amount of time in the same store it’s easy to end up on autopilot. When we started with Maze it was a catalyst even more enthusiasm, new energy, and I can't praise this app enough, says shop manager Hege Hollund to Retailmagasinet.

The tool has already changed the customer meeting for the better. Hollund feels that the app works well for her as a shop manager, for the employees and for the customers.

– We get feedback on what we can get better at. And in addition to following our own development, we can compare ourselves to other shops, says the shop manager.

They compete against the shops in the same area – Sandnes, Stavanger and Haugesund.

– They're in the app, so it's easy to compare and find out who's best.

Positive employees

Communication between customers and employees is closer than before, and the employees are involved more in the feedback.

– The employees are extremely positive to Maze as an tool. If certain ascpects of our service weren’t as good as it should have been, we want to know. Now we have Maze to help us be the best for our customers, so that they’ll choose to return, says the shop manager.

All the employees understand the purpose of Maze, which is positive reinforcement for all colleagues.

– I discuss both positive and negative feedback with all colleagues. So far we haven't had any “red faces”, just one “yellow” from a customer who thought it was dirty in the fitting room. We’ve set up a new process to rectify this and take extra care regarding fitting room standards, says Hollund.

Rising ambassador measure

The shop has selected three areas of focus:

1. Customers shall be met with a “hi”

2. Conclude the sale in a pleasant manner

3. Offer customers help before they go to checkout

When a shop employee is alone in the shop, as is often the case leading up to 2pm, it's not always as easy when there is a queue at checkout.

– We have between 300 and 600 customers stopping by every day, but we have to be able to look up and make sure everyone gets a “hi”, says Hollund.

At Gina Tricot, the ambassador grade is measured for each shop.

– My goal is to be at 100. Our shop is sitting at 90, aside from “Offer customers help before they go to checkout”, which is at 60 percent and drags things down a little.

She emphasises that a good conclusion to the customer interaction is important. That you thank them for their purchase, and that you also wish customers who don't make a purchase a nice day and welcome back.

Customers respond

The shop gets continuous feedback from customers. Since the system is relatively new, not all customers respond. However, the response percentage is increasing. Hollund says that they inform customers that they have started with customer surveys. And when the customers become aware of this, they respond more often.

– All the customers I have talked with about the survey have been positive, Hege Hollund concludes.

– Seeing an increase from week to week

– Seeing an increase from week to week
Heidi Engan is the Country Manager for Gina Tricot in Norway. Photo: Gina Tricot

Gina Tricot has implemented Maze in both Norway and Sweden.

– We wish to develop ourselves and have had sales training and drills to give our salespeople the right conditions to meet our customers in the way we want. Maze customer feedback is real time, our colleagues receive direct feedback to their shop, says Country Manager Heidi Engan to Retailmagasinet.

The feedback from the customers comes fast, which makes it possible to work with it while it is fresh.

– That hasn't been possible before. With Mystery Shopper, the feedback comes a good while later. Now our work with customer feedback is more alive, and that motivates us, says Engan.

She highlights that the entire chain has to be pushed to advance continuously.

– In 2020, we have to make improvements in several areas. What's important then is to find the right aids, tools that both motivate and help, she says.

Some colleagues were a little apprehensive when the tool was to be put to use.

– We quickly dispelled that, as it's a tool to make us better. We are doing this together to fully understand what the customers are expecting of us.

Naturally, there is some variation between the shops, and some need more time than others. The question that is posed to the customers who are members of the customer club Spotlight – applies to both the interaction with the customer and the salesperson and conditions related to the shop itself.

– We’ve had very positive engagement with customers during the Corona period. Keeping the fitting rooms clean and tidy has been a challenge, as there can only be a few people on the floor at a time. If the customers feel that we aren't good enough at that, then we have to deal with it, Heidi Engan concludes.

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