HRRetail

5 Best Tips to Improve Retail Staff Training and Customer Service

Happy employees – happy customers. Many famous business people rely on that motto to grow their businesses and guess what – it works. Running a business is hard, especially for newbies, and in that frantic environment, it’s easy to forget that its employees make a company. They are the faces of your company, and that’s how it will be judged by the clients. And it’s hard to expect that they will treat your clients nicely if they are maltreated themselves.

That’s why it’s important to implement certain procedures that will keep your employees satisfied. Yes, it can be both time and money-consuming, but you will see increased customer satisfaction and earnings as soon as you start.

1. Hire for Attitude, not Skills

Skills can be learned but being nice can’t. Of course, we can all put on a fake smile and pretend, but we can’t do it forever. And sometimes, it can even make things worse. For instance, if an unpleasant person has a problematic customer, they can only play nice for so long before snapping at the customer and making your company look bad.  Choose your front-line employees with their nature, not skills in mind. You want a pleasant and patient person.

2. Make Training Interesting

5 Best Tips to Improve Retail Staff Training and Customer Service

The first things that come to our minds when work-related training is mentioned are:

  • Boring
  • Fake
  • Awkward
  • Information overload
  • I can’t wait for it to be over

And, to be honest, we can’t be blamed – most of these training sessions feel like they came from “The Office” TV show. Make them more interesting and engaging. Divide them into bite-size chunks, which won’t overwhelm the employee. Make sure they learned what you are teaching through role play. Try to make it less awkward by adding humor. Tip: start with a funny “what not to do” example – that will loosen the people up.

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3. Talk to Your Employees

Even when they aren’t speaking, they are saying a lot. Don’t be satisfied with “everything is ok.” There is always something that can be improved. Engage in casual conversations, don’t make it look like an interrogation. It’s also very important not to call employees to your office, but to talk to them at their workplace, canteen, wherever they feel comfortable. Spend time observing them work and draw conclusions. When you present your findings to the staff, please do not make it into a lecture, but more of a casual talk and encourage them to give their insights on what might or might not work.

4. Make Things Easy on Your Customers – Personalize the Customer Experience

By establishing a trusting relationship with your customers, you are more likely to get relevant feedback and information. You would entrust your friend, wouldn’t you? Loyal customers who expect good service would be more perceptive of the tiny things that may annoy them and would be more prone to talk about them. Also, they will be more elaborate in their positive feedback- letting you know what you are doing right.

Focus on the customer in front of you. The way people are shopping is changing, and people expect that to be able to buy and pay through different channels. It is imperative to make the purchasing experience as pleasant as possible and train your staff to provide support through various channels. For instance, people can try clothes when they buy in brick & mortar stores, and the percentage of complaints and returns is much lower than online stores. Customer support should be trained to deal with these and similar situations.

  • Offer around-the-clock customer support
  • Give your customers multiple ways to provide feedback and improve your customer interactions
  • Develop the customer service strategy for each channel separately.
  • Be active on social networks and use them to increase customer satisfaction by answering questions in a casual and relaxed manner.
  • Make sure your employees are engaged
  • Introduce employees and customers by name whenever possible
  • Send your customers birthday cards and give them discounts on their special occasion
  • Offer a relaxed and simple refund policy, satisfaction warranty, and trial period.
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5. Share Customer Feedback Across all Departments

If a customer complains about a torn package or the wrong size, you shouldn’t inform only the shipping department. This doesn’t mean that every complaint should be sent individually to all departments because that would clog up the network, and the employees will not even read them anymore. Gather the data and make a digest version with infographics and easy-to-understand information. This will make communication across departments easier and improve their cooperation.

Summary

There are many ways to improve customer service, but they all start with getting to know your customer. The things we’ve mentioned may seem complicated, but just at first glance. In fact, it’s pretty simple, and it all starts with one simple step – communication. After that, you will get the notion of what and how to improve.

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