• 08/12/17 Uncategorised

    eCommerce reigns supreme on Black Friday

    Online retailers have emerged clear winners of this year’s Black Friday battle for consumer spend.

    There were initial fears that Black Friday 2017 (followed by Cyber Monday with its “top shelf” offers) would fail to shine. However, it ultimately resulted in online sales figures that put last year’s “in the shade”.

    This continues the trend for cash-strapped shoppers to turn to online retailers for bargains and value for money.

    It also reflects the shift in customer experience priorities. Consumers enjoy responsive eCommerce fulfilment and delivery services.

    Especially in the busy lead up to Christmas, they prefer to find their discounted goods from the comfort of their armchairs or desks, rather than fighting it out during in-store sales.

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    How did Black Friday affect online sales?

    According to the eCommerce trends service PCA Predict, online shopping fell by 24%, between midnight and 7am on Black Friday, when compared to 2016. However, this trend reversed by 5.30pm, at which time online sales showed a 3% increase year-on-year.

    However, it’s highly significant that in the proceeding few days (when a number of eCommerce leaders started promoting discounted goods) there was a 11% rise in digital shopping.

    This clearly indicates that online sales figures related to Black Friday show a healthy increase. In fact, Barclaycard announced that Black Friday spending finished 8% up on 2016. As they process almost 50% of all UK credit and debit card transactions, they have a unique perspective.

    Indeed, John Lewis (an online and offline retailer) described its Black Friday experience as one of its “most successful days”. It announced that it included one of its busiest single hours ever of online trading.

    What about shopping in physical stores?

    Numbers of people visited physical stores fell during Black Friday. According to analysts, visitors to UK shopping centres, high streets and retail parks dropped by 8%.

    The weeklong online activity promoting discounted electrical and fashion goods, could well have spread demand, and reduced the need to visit stores.

    Black Friday and Cyber Monday trends

    Among the conclusions from studying the relative success of Black Friday 2017, is the insight into what UK shoppers look for from internet-based retailers.

    John Lewis announced that popular product searches were for Sonos speakers and iPads, for example.

    Also, this shopping activity – as both a customer experience and sales tool – appears to work best when spread out.

    This adds to the view that Black Friday and Cyber Monday should be part of a pre-Christmas “season” of special offers and promotions.

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  • 01/12/17 Uncategorised

    How to make your customer experience pay off

    Creating and maintaining first class relationships with consumers continues to be a high priority for customer marketers in 2017. Improvements in customer service over recent years have led to a corresponding increase in customer expectations – consumer awareness of what excellence looks like is high. This can pose a challenge for brands seeking to maximise the return from their customer experience strategy.

    According to KPMG Nunwood’s annual Customer Experience Excellence study, 2017 has actually seen British brands hit the lowest level in the report’s eight year history for overall performance in customer service, with a CEE (Customer Experience Excellence) score of 7.08, down from 7.33 in the previous year. Shockingly, this comes despite billions of pounds of investment into improving customer relations across the board.

    The good news is that, for the top scorers, customer experience continues to be a mechanism to lever for increased profitability. Top scorers this year include QVC, rising eighteen places from 2016 to top the list, and John Lewis Finance, who made a new appearance in second place. Financial Services brand Skipton Building Society are also notable for their twenty-six place rise into the top ten performers.

    Savvy brands need to master how to maximise the value proposition inherent in improving overall customer experience. Here’s how:
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    Consistency is key

    Delivering a consistent strategy across all channels is vital for creating value in customer service. Every touchpoint of the customer journey needs to reflect a connected vision for excellence. Customers today use a wide variety of devices and channels to interact with a brand, and nothing will make that customer feel less valued than receiving conflicting information between them all.

    Stand out

    Whilst most businesses will look to consistently improve the customer experience, the ones who achieve real stand out success are those who translate this innovation into a commercial value driver. Commenting on this year’s findings, David Conway, Director at KPMG Nunwood said, “Memorable customer experience is vital in order to achieve brand advocacy and loyalty.  While most businesses seek to improve customer experience, a company must go beyond simply meeting expectations and exceed them in order to leave a lasting impression.”

    Innovate for success

    The brands that drive the greatest value from the customer experience are those who seek out innovation, building on events in their customers’ lives to push new standards for excellence. As Adrian Clamp, UK Head of Customer Advisory at KPMG Nunwood puts it, “In order to differentiate from the competition and leave a positive impression on consumers, companies can no longer rely on tried and tested methods. Winners in the race for customer loyalty are those that have learned how to harness customer insight data and technologies to deliver positive memorable experiences every time.”

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  • 24/11/17 Uncategorised

    Finding the right print supplier for your organisation

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    Today’s companies face many overwhelming choices when it comes to solutions for their print and digital requirements. Branding and information must be provided to the general public so that they have the information they need at their fingertips, but how do you know you’re making the right choice with your marketing?

    This is especially important in the public sector, where those organisations providing the much needed services that keep our country and people safe and healthy, and our economy working, must be able to inform people about upcoming changes, or new and amended services promptly and efficiently.

    A careful balance

    And as we well know, the public sector needs to keep within a very controlled budget. Waste and excessive spending are not in the country’s best interests. But the work still needs to be done to a high satisfaction, meaning that public sector businesses must walk a careful balance between what they spend, and what they provide.

    Work with a company that puts your print supplier needs first

    Not only does looking at the various aspects of print and digital services, from design and storage to print and distribution, take a valuable amount of time, the many different options can prove confusing. How do you know which solution is best for your organisation and its current needs as it services the community, while also fulfilling the government’s legal agreements for managed print and digital solutions?

    Expertise and flexibility with integrity

    Much of the stress can be lifted from the public sector official in charge of finding a print solution by going directly to those with experience and expertise in this field. By working hand in hand with an ethical company which is already Crown Commercial Service Framework approved and requires no pre-qualification questionnaire, public sector organisations can find the right help for their requirements while unravelling the knot of options open to them. Working with a company that is flexible and effective, and who has evolved with the changing marketing industry is important when reaching customers, as is being certain that the company is professional and ethical.

    Years of experience saves time and money

    Suzanne Kay at Granby Marketing is one such person to talk to about print solutions for your organisation. She can guide you through the services that will meet your needs, and with over 50 years of experience in the marketing industry, the award-winning company will make sure their solution saves you time and ensures you don’t waste money on expensive marketing mistakes.

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  • 17/11/17 Uncategorised

    The retail experience must be shopper centric

    A year long study by the Omnico group has unearthed some worrying news about how UK shoppers feel about their retail experience. The study has shown a decrease in the confidence that shoppers have in how much retailers understand what they want from their shopping experience. What the study has demonstrated is that the retail experience must be shopper-centric and that retailers that want to succeed will need to adapt and evolve. So, what can retailers do to make stores more shopper-centric… could POS promotions help improve the experience for shoppers?

    The study has revealed that just 2% of UK consumers feel that retailers understand what they like when they’re shopping, down from 4% a year ago. The survey, known as the Omnico Retail Gap Barometer, is in its fourth year. The researchers questioned 1,215 UK consumers regarding an interaction with a retailer across all shopping channels.

    Image result for shopping POS

    The study also found that 72% of shoppers believe that retailers could do more to improve the overall shopping experience. It also found that a whopping 72% of UK consumers are frustrated in some way about their shopping experience. The findings also revealed that more than half of all shoppers (51%) said they had a seamless experience between online and in-store, down from 62% last year. What this all means of course, is that the retailers which take heed of these findings and improve the store experience will undoubtedly win over the many frustrated customers out there. It also found that 72% of shoppers are looking for a fast and convenient shopping experience, so this means that when retailers consider ways to improve stores, then perhaps more staff, better signposted tills and a more efficient store layout could be key areas to think about.

    With many customers appearing to be in a rush to make their purchase, shops should consider POS (Point of Sale) promotions to make up-sales, rather than slowing shoppers down as they pass through the store. Shops like Primark do this very well, as they have fast moving tills which are well staffed and are packed with point of sale promotions.

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  • 13/11/17 Uncategorised

    5 reasons your brand needs a customer satisfaction survey

    If there is one key area in continued business growth, it is hanging onto customers. Keeping loyal customers has been found to cost less than attracting new ones whilst also helping to market your brand. Loyal returning customers are far more likely to keep coming back and tell all their friends about you, which is superb for your long-term business plans.

    One effective and efficient way to help retain customers is through the use of a customer satisfaction survey.

    1. How do your customers feel about you?

    If there is one thing a customer satisfaction survey can do like nothing else, it is tell you how your customers view you. As well as a general overview of your brand, it can also help you dig deep into each department so you can see what is really working or not. This sort of information is absolute gold-dust when planning a long-term strategy.

    2. An accurate way to measure your efforts

    Key to any successful business is making sure that what you are doing is actually working and reaching your intended customer base. Being able to accurately measure how effective marketing campaigns or customer services are at making customers aware of what you are trying to achieve is crucial

    Image result for customer satisfaction survey

    3. Let it grow

    Many studies in the past have shown that a satisfied customer will stay loyal to your brand. This naturally leads to repeat business from them as well as the free word-of-mouth advertising it brings. Not only can this save you money in terms of the free marketing you get, but it also is the best way to grow as a business.

    4. Shows customers that you care

    At the heart of it, we all like to feel appreciated and listened to. Your customers are no different and giving them this feeling will help drive customer loyalty greatly. Asking for feedback from consumers via a customer satisfaction survey gives them the perception that you value them.

    5. It gives the personal touch

    The modern business world has made great strides towards personalising the service you offer to customers. Through surveys, you can collect the information you need to do just that. It will also allow you to act on any negative feedback and fix a problem you may otherwise not be aware of. You may even want to go as far as offering discounts on selected products to unhappy customers in an effort to keep their business.

    Here at Granby, we are experts in this field. If you would like to deliver a personalised customer satisfaction survey to reap the many benefits it brings, get in touch today!

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  • 30/10/17 Uncategorised

    Consumers and Shoppers Have Different Brand Relationships

    There is a distinct difference between a consumer and a shopper. The person purchasing the product instore, the shopper, might not actually be the end consumer and they have a very different relationship with the brand they’re buying. A consumer’s relationship with a brand is often short-lived, at least for most FMCG products. Whether it’s food and drink, makeup or a beauty item, the consumer’s relationship with the product is usually fleeting, as the consumption is over so quickly.

    The satisfaction a consumer derives from a product is based on the product’s ability to fulfil their need – i.e. satisfy hunger, quench thirst, brighten eyes and so on. Once this need has been fulfilled, the consumer is finished with the product until they next feel their need return. If their experience has been positive, and the product lived up to or surpassed expectations they are likely to return to the product again, developing the relationship between the individual and the brand.

    Image result for shopper

    When it comes to the shopper in-store, brands have to work harder to gain their interest, on top of all the other distractions in-store including various brands, offers and in-store music. Brands need to use marketing to capture the interest of the shopper in-store, using creative tactics to engage people shopping and convert them into customers.

    One of the most effective ways to engage shoppers is through the marketing materials created to highlight the product. Point of sale marketing which includes bold text, and attractive imagery or colours helps to capture the initial interest of shoppers in-store. Displays that use interactive screens, or that are brightly lit using LED lights are another way that brands can literally illuminate their product drawing the focus of the shopper.

    By marketing your products in the natural flow of the store design, or even better, helping to improve the shoppers’ experience, you could entice customers to your product. In doing so, you’ll transform what could have been a missed opportunity into a chance to draw the shopper to your product, increasing your chances of a sale. Promotions are also a fantastic way to persuade a shopper to buy your product, especially if they haven’t previously and are unaware of its potential benefits.

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  • 26/10/17 Uncategorised

    What does GDPR mean for the public sector?

    GDPR is due to come into effect in the UK on the 25th May 2018, and it’s important that all companies, both in the private and the public sector, are aware of the changes it will bring. It will represent a major update to the existing Data Protection regulation and aims to give control back to consumers over their personal data. It will also grant far greater powers to the Information Commissioner’s Office, whose maximum limit on fines will be dramatically increased from £500,000 to £17 million, or 4% of global revenue. All UK and EU firms have a fiduciary duty to understand and implement these changes when it comes to monitoring or using personal data.

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    How does it affect the public sector?

    The very nature of public sector companies means you are likely to hold a large amount of sensitive personal data. This includes such things as financial data, contact information, addresses and medical records. Many public sector organisations employ the services of third-party ICT support and data storage. Regardless, it falls to your organisation to ensure compliance and keep data secure.

    What changes need to be made?

    Before the 25th May, your company will need to have fulfilled all requirements of GDPR. The major changes associated with this are listed here.

    • Suitably train all staff on how they will need to now collect and store customer data.
    • Conduct Data Protection Impact Assessments as a means to test the security of your systems and processes. If you are implementing new technologies or are changing the methods in which you categorise data, then these assessments are vital.
    • If a breach were to occur, be sure to notify the ICO within 72 hours. If it is considered a major breach and individuals are placed at risk, all necessary individuals will also need to be personally contacted.
    • As well as staff on the ground, all executive managers and board level staff need to be aware that they are accountable for ensuring their company’s compliance. They will also need to keep documented records of steps taken to reach this new level of compliance.
    • One major change is the way in which customers must “opt-in” to have any data collected, so make this clear on any forms and remove default opt-in boxes.
    • However, if a task is being performed in the public interest and it requires the processing of data, then under authorised circumstances this is OK without prior consent.
    • Once data has been used for the intended purpose, it must then be destroyed.

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  • 19/10/17 Uncategorised

    Consumer behaviour and expectations at Christmas

    Christmas is a key period in the retail season, which sees shopper volumes increase and brands step up their operations to deal with the increased influx of customers. Shopping for the festive season begins in November and continues throughout December and into early January during the New Year sales. With key sales dates during these months, including ‘Black Friday’ and ‘Cyber Monday’, it’s a crucial time for retailers to maximise opportunities to increase revenue.

    The key to ensuring the period is as successful as possible is for consumer-facing businesses to understand the power of customer service, ensuring that everyone who comes into contact with their brand has a positive experience. Statistics from the 2017 Trust Pilot Report highlight the importance of the period for generating revenue gains and the significance of a positive customer experience. Reviewing the almost 700,000 reviews given in December 2015, the results produce some important points for retailers and other consumer-facing businesses.

    Image result for christmas shopping

    Bear in mind for consumers it’s a frantic period, and stress levels are increased by the pressure to spend extra on Christmas gifts. However, customers expect retail staff to be as attentive as ever, so although staff may also be experiencing stress, it’s important not to let this get in the way of providing excellent customer service. For businesses who deliver a positive customer experience, they stand to maximise on the potential revenue gains available. During Black Friday and Cyber Monday alone 40% of retailers experienced a 48% revenue growth, highlighting the impact of the two key shopping days.

    Whilst consumers find themselves choosing to shop to provide gifts for the holiday period, regardless of their previous experiences, the memories of an unpleasant Christmas shop should not be ignored as they are carried into the new year. In 2015, negative reviews increased over the Christmas season, equating to 12% of all reviews given during December. This figure had risen by 20% from November, highlighting how retailers are failing to maintain their levels of positive customer experiences. The most common reason given for one-star reviews was ‘customer service’ which was cited by 47.5% of people as the most important factor to them during the holiday season.

    Whilst the Christmas period holds huge opportunity for retailers and consumer-facing businesses to significantly increase revenue, the facts above make it clear just how important maintaining good customer service is to enjoy the benefits of increased sales.

    **All stats from Trust pilot 2017 Christmas Report

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  • 12/10/17 Uncategorised

    The power of rewards: How to incentivise your customers the right way

    One of the key ways for businesses to attract and keep customers is with attractive rewards. Many companies know the importance of giving customers extra value to help keep them satisfied but take the free or discount route. While discounts and freebies will work in the short-term, the majority of organisations would be better served with a dedicated reward scheme instead.

    Why are rewards preferred by consumers?

    When compared against discount schemes that simply offer a lower price, reward schemes are much preferred by consumers. Reward schemes are outperforming discount-based promotions across a whole range of categories as customers appreciate the more personal approach. The ability to connect and build a personal relationship with your target audience is what will help brands to grow moving forward. In a recent KPMG survey, 80% of customers were found to like the surprise deals or gifts this approach brings.

    What makes a good reward scheme?

    One of the headline facts around reward schemes is that the most popular are widely redeemable. This gives them a great flexibility and choice in where consumers can use the reward which is very appealing to them. It also shows that your brand is thinking about what is best for them and their needs.

    Another point to note is that digital platforms lead the way. It has been shown that up to a third of customers prefer being able to access and use their rewards online. The reason behind this shift away from traditional reward programs is that actually having to physically use a membership card in person is not what consumers want now. Examples of popular digital rewards include products such as E-Cards and instant media downloads, which 33% of millennials prefer.

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    What is digital receipt validation?

    A recent innovation in this area is digital receipt validation which enables consumers to redeem their rewards via online validation of their receipt from a purchase. While great for consumers, it is also a superb digital marketing option for businesses too.

    The instant gratification that customers get using this system means they will leave with a great brand impression and be more likely to return. This provides a great tool for companies to drive loyalty and create superb brand awareness with their core audience.

    The power of rewards marketing is immense, with many consumers reacting better to this than traditional discount schemes. If you need help to implement any kind of marketing strategy in this or other areas, get in touch with Granby Marketing today.

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  • 04/10/17 Uncategorised

    5 things customers expect from your customer service

    One of the key aspects to experiencing success as a business is the way you interact with customers. Maintaining a strong and healthy relationship with consumers is absolutely vital in making sure your organisation continues to move its brand forward.

    Here are five features that all customers will expect when they contact you:

    1. Customers want you to meet their expectations

    When a customer contacts your business they will already have set expectations in place before doing so. This could be how they are dealt with on a personal level or what they want to get out of their discussion with you. Being able to meet these expectations is crucial to your brand as this will dictate the public’s perception of you and your standing with them.

    2. Customers want options in how they contact you

    In the modern world, people use a variety of mediums in their daily lives and this naturally extends into their dealings with any business. By offering a variety of ways to get in contact, you are meeting this need and showing that your brand is doing all you can to respond to their expectations. Think email, phone, SMS.

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    3. Customers expect a timely response

    One feature that all customers find vexing is not getting a timely response to any questions or queries. Make sure your business doesn’t fall into this trap and lose customers as a result. Show that your brand values its customers by ensuring all contact is answered quickly, whatever medium it arrives on.

    4. Customers want a personalised experience

    Being able to offer a personalised experience to consumers is an area that all businesses can excel in. Remember to construct your customer service in such a way that customers are dealt with as people first and consumers second. By doing this, you will keep them happy and show that you care about them personally.

    5. Customers want you to solve their problems (first contact resolution)

    One of the major negatives with customer service is passing someone around departments in order to get their query resolved. This will frustrate them greatly and possibly mean they pass this bad experience of your brand onto friends and family. Make sure all customer service staff can resolve issues at the point of first contact to avoid this.

    As you can see, effective and efficient customer service is a must for any business to succeed. Implementing the strategies above will help your brand to increase not only its visibility with the public but also its good standing with them.

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