Noticed in a New Scientist (7 Jan, pp 20), an article about tracking people in retail where shoppers were referred to as ‘Retail Opportunities’. So that’s where all the ‘Customer Service’ has gone, into ‘Retail Opportunities’. Gee! Thanks! It’s nice to know exactly where I stand with the retail fraternity.
I was also particularly enamoured with the strong desire of the retailer to differentiate the child from the adult since children were not seen as ‘Retail Opportunities’. Which immediately begged the question: “From which planet do you come from when you think that children are not ‘Retail Opportunities’? Just ask M & D & G’s how much they spend on the little darlings’ each year!
So from a ‘Retail Opportunity’ to a ‘Retailing Opportunist’: Here’s my ‘Customer’ view of you. It can be expressed as the ‘Retail Opportunities’ VP (that’s Value Proposition). This VP consists of V (that’s Value), plus PQ (that’s Product Quality), multiplied by CS (that’s Customer Service). CS is never greater that 1.0. So simply put, if you’ve no Customer Service, you’ve got nothing. And that means you haven’t got me. And even worse. I tell people about shopping experiences where I feel that I’m just a ‘Retail Opportunity’.
So I’d humbly suggest that rather than treating ‘The Customers as ‘Retail Opportunities’ you consider how you might improve your ‘CS’ (that’s Customer Service) so that shopping in your store is actually an enjoyable, and rewarding, experience. And both customer and retail can say ‘Ah so desu ka’ to that.
*“Ah so desu ka” is, as I understand it, Japanese for “Is that so?” I gather, from speaking with Japanese friends, that it has various connotations, depending on the manner in which it is spoken. These range from; ‘Oh! Really?’ up to, ‘Yeh! Right. This is a bit fairy tale’.