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How Does Apple Get Away With It?

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Last week, Apple revealed what’s new and different about the iPhone 7. It’s water resistant, which is a plus. But it doesn’t have a headphone jack. Come again? That’s right. Apple just pulled another Crazy Ivan—a bold, surprising move the average retailer wouldn’t dare make.

Brands 218

The Next 5 Strategies for Ramping up Customer Engagement

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In our previous post about strategies to ramp up customer engagement , we suggested the following ways to engage customers during the holiday season: Personalize customer experience with mobile technology. Gamify shopping experience by introducing tools that will interact with shoppers.

Customer Experience Strategy: What to Include, and What to Avoid

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If you’re serious about competing to win in retail, then you’re undoubtedly: Focused on your customers (vs. quarterly numbers). Invested in creating a unique brand experience.

7 Ways Brands Profit From Customer Experience Management Programs

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Why do leading brands manage their customer experience? Why the mystery shops, customer satisfaction surveys, and in-store customer interviews? Forget “It’s nice to know how we’re doing.” These brands are laser-focused on the bottom line.

Brands 169

Study: The Health of the Contact Center

What does it take to engage agents in this customer-centric era? Download our study of 1,000 contact center agents in the US and UK to find out what major challenges are facing contact center agents today – and what your company can do about it.

Guest Post: Long tail vs curation - Which wins the future of retail?

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The future of retail survival will require more precision than ever before. Most consumers simply don't think about retail models and strategies. In today's omnichannel world, consumer shopping is now any time and everywhere.

Data Security for Retailers: How to Protect Your Customers and Your Brand

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In the retail business, nothing is more important than keeping customers happy. Nothing, that is, except keeping them safe. It’s every retailer’s worst nightmare: a data breach that leaves the brand’s reputation in tatters and destroys consumer trust.

Retail 156

Why Your Omnichannel Experience Is Falling Short (and What to Do About It)

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Before you can master the omnichannel experience , you need to measure it the right way. But many retailers aren’t. They’re relying on lagging indicators, like point-of-sale data and customer complaints, to gauge their performance. This is no way to delight customers or distinguish brands!

How Our Clients Use Mystery Shopping to Deliver an Exceptional Customer Experience

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The Walking Company, a footwear retailer with 215+ locations nationally and brands such as ABEO, Dansko, Ecco and Ugg, is "The World’s Largest Specialty Retailer of Comfort Footwear". It’s a product pitch with undeniable appeal.

Retail 161

Customer Experience Transformation in Telecoms

Transforming CX: Critical success factors mobile operators are looking for.

7 Reasons Why Traditional Retailers Are Struggling to Survive

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Traditional retailers' legacy of store success is their biggest challenge. One only needs to look at the headlines to see that many retailers are struggling. Let's clarify that … a large number of traditional retailers are struggling to grow profitably.

Retail 153

4 C-Level Obstacles to Your Customer Experience Goals (and How to Overcome Them)

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If you’re struggling to meet your customer experience goals, you might assume the problem lies at the departmental, regional, or store level. But more often than not, the problem originates in the C-suite. It’s not for a lack of strategic planning. Most retailers understand the issues they face.

Is Mystery Shopping Right for Your Business?

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Wherever they spend precious time and money, consumers want a satisfying customer experience. They want to feel special, cared for, and better off than they were before, across every channel and touchpoint. They’re emotionally invested in the outcome of their buying journey.

Hotels 159

35 Sample Mystery Shopper Survey Questions for Retail Brands

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Not all mystery shopping programs are created equal. Some yield customer experience insights that are reliable, useful, and ultimately very profitable. Other programs fail to deliver on all three counts.

Retail 176

How to Survive (and Thrive) in the Age of Amazon

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Three years after Amazon went online, and one year after it became a publicly traded company, Deep Impact (1998) premiered in theaters. The film depicted an E.L.E., or extinction-level event, befalling mankind. A huge meteor fell to earth and wreaked havoc. Many lives were destroyed.

Retail 150

The Ten Commandments of Customer Service

This cheat sheet covers ten fundamentals of customer service to help your business excel.

The Winning Formula For Retail Stores In 5 Simple Letters

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To master CX, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. In our latest guest post, our colleague Chris Petersen explores commonalities of world-class customer centric organizations and what it takes to be considered among them.

Retail 156

Retail Customer Experience: How to Stop Competing Internally—and Start Competing to Win

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If managing the customer experience were easy, every customer would be delighted. Every brand would enjoy rock-star status. Chart-busting revenue growth would be the industry norm. But we live in the real world, where the CX ideal and the sales-floor reality are often miles apart.

Retail 147

Guest Post: 5 Signs that you’re in a relationship with your retailer … or not

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The most important "sale" made every day is building relationships. There is a classic phrase among my children that the relationship must be "real" when they post it on Facebook. Unfortunately, there is no Facebook for recording the status of retailer relationships with consumers.

Are You Supporting Sabotaging Your Own Brand Experience?

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It’s hard to deliver an outstanding customer experience with one hand tied behind your back. Just ask any retail associate who bends over backwards to satisfy her employer’s unrealistic expectations. Over time, even the most determined employee will lose the will. And lose heart.

Brands 153

5 Things You Can Do to Make Your Customer Experience Stickier

Tactics for Boosting Engagement and Brand Affinity.

Guest Post: 5 Questions CMOs must now ask when “they don’t show up”

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Marketers need to engage like they are throwing a party for friends. What if you held a really important event, and spent a lot of time and money on decorations and catering … and no one came?

Sales 147

Customer Experience Management: Top 5 Do’s and Don’ts

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Now that product and price are no longer the big differentiators in retail, managing the customer experience is crucial to staying competitive. It’s how leading brands become dominant, and how they stay on top. Unfortunately, many retailers have the wrong idea about customer experience management.

Marketing and Associate Training: The Yin and Yang of Customer Experience

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Marketing and associate training are inextricably linked. They’re the yin and yang of customer experience. Or at least they should be. When you make a brand promise , you’re communicating values and priorities. You’re creating an expectation about what a relationship with your brand will entail.

The Experts Weigh in: 4 Essentials of a Superior Customer Experience

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Retail is a tough business. The formula for delivering a great customer experience is complex and ever changing. There’s always something new to learn. This week, we’ve compiled a list of outstanding posts written by leading CX experts.

Retail 144

How Does Customer Experience Impact Angry Customers?

Let's look at how the customer experience of an angry customer informs strategy, and how companies can transform frustrated customers into delighted ones.

Time to Get Serious About Your Customer Experience

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Many retailers are stuck in a defensive crouch. They fixate on their comp sales ID, comparing today’s number with where it was a year ago. They’re focused on protecting what they have, and maybe getting a nice win this year. It’s a dangerous way to live. Foot traffic, on the whole, is in decline.

Sales 144

Why We Love Negative Customer Feedback (and Why You Should Too)

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Bill Gates famously said, “Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.”. Imagine if Gates hadn’t bothered to ask for feedback or address his customers’ concerns. Would Microsoft have become the iconic brand it is today? Not by a long shot.

Guest Post: Can’t Buy Me Love or Superior Customer Experience

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In our latest guest post, our colleague Gregory Yankelovich addresses the challenge some organizations face in executing incomplete customer experience programs as well as how some companies are inherently set up to slow or prevent action obtained through these programs.

ROI 144

What Amazon Can Learn From Apple’s Brick-and-Mortar Success

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Amazon is stepping out into the world. The real world. In November 2015, the online retail giant opened its very first brick-and-mortar bookstore. Apart from the strength of its brand, there are two reasons Amazon is betting on the store’s success.

Retail 144

5 Customer Satisfaction Templates You Can Use Right Away

Begin or improve your customer satisfaction program with these 5 ready to use templates.

Moving from Reactive to Proactive Customer Experience

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A reactive customer experience is the kind that manages customer reactions instead of customer expectations and needs. It’s an outdated approach that aims to mostly put out fires.

How Smart Suggestive Selling Can Help Starbucks (Re)build Loyalty

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To make an omelet, you have to break a few eggs. Many retailers aren’t willing to brave the mess. Starbucks clearly is. Last year, thanks to the My Starbucks Rewards program, the coffee giant enjoyed unprecedented sales increases. In Q3 2015 alone, the coffee giant’s net revenues rose 18%, to $4.9

The Deadliest Threat to Your Retail Brand (and What to Do About it)

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In last week’s post , we discussed Amazon’s new brick-and-mortar venture. What we didn’t mention was that in early 2015, Amazon approached RadioShack about taking over some of its stores. Now there’s a stark contrast.

Retail 141

Moving beyond service - how do we make a customer's life better today?

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2015 was an incredible year for retail. New technologies shaped customer experiences allowing brands to compete effectively for customers’ attention and provide amazing experiences.

Retail 144

Customer Experience Strategy: How to Measure the Immeasurable

Take a second to reflect on the brands you love. How do you go about creating an awesome customer experience strategy that works for your own customers?

Omnichannel and Customer Satisfaction: Are You Struggling to Move the Needle?

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When it comes to the omnichannel customer experience, you can’t get by with “good enough.”. In fact, there’s no such thing. You’re either “excellent” (state of the art, seamless, satisfying), or you’re nowhere. Every time a leading retailer leaps forward, consumer expectations rise.

Mastering Omnichannel: The 3 Keys to Success

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We have the technology. We can make the customer experience better than it was. Better, stronger, faster. So why aren’t we? We know consumers love the idea of a single shopping cart across all channels. They love being able to “click and collect” (aka BOPIS, or buy online, pickup in store).

Guest Post: The Expanding Digital Divide Between Consumers And Retailers

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Consumers want it all … but just how much can retailers deliver? I'm fortunate to have an opportunity to travel to India next week to speak at the Omnichannel India Conclave. It is always a great learning opportunity to visit another country to discover retail trends firsthand.

Guest Post: Easy Strategies to Develop Relationships with Your Customers

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Who is Your Customer? Who is your customer?’ may seem like a strange question to a business owner. But, do you really know who your customers are?

7 Steps to Elevate Your Customers' Experience

Learn how to walk through your customer's journey in order to improve their satisfaction and engagement