“Today’s premium is tomorrow’s everyday expectation.”
Over more recent years, customer service has become and is continuing to be a key differentiator between a business and its competitor. It’s not necessarily that levels of customer service are falling, it’s more that customer expectations are increasing and businesses are having to work harder to encourage customers to shop with them.
The dictionary definition of ‘premium’ states;
relating to or denoting a commodity of superior quality and therefore a higher price.
If you were to ask the question ‘what makes a premium customer experience?’ the likelihood is you’ll be presented with an array of different answers. Whether it’s providing an unforgettable customer experience, going the extra mile or quite simply providing a fast and efficient service, how each customer defines premium will differ. This is because each customer has a varying perception of what premium is; what one customer might classify as a premium customer experience might just be an average to good experience for another. Customers perceptions of what defines premium not only varies between each person but also over time.
Our CEO Mike Dalloz provides an account of how, for him, premium customer experience has changed over time:
“Back in the 1970’s when I was about 7 years old my brother and I were given the opportunity to take a ride in a Rolls Royce. Of course, it had an opulence about it, but there were two things in particular that really impressed me. It was a roasting hot day and when the driver pressed a button there was a stream of cold air. Yes, you’ve got it… we were blown away by air conditioning! But there was better to come… this Rolls Royce didn’t have handles to wind down the windows – it had buttons! We can look back on this now and laugh because in today’s world we would struggle to buy a new car without air-conditioning and electric windows; in the 1970’s this was purely reserved for premium products. In many environments today’s premium is tomorrow’s everyday expectation.”
There are multiple factors to consider when defining what a premium customer experience looks like:
- The type of customer – you may have to adapt the service you provide depending on the customer stood in front of you.
- Business processes – processes are likely to change depending on particular scenarios.
- Personalisation – you may need to consider how you tailor the experience to make it more personal to the customer.
- Complimentary offerings – what complimentary items can you offer to the customer? E.g. refreshments on arrival or free product samples after making a purchase.
- Behaviours – delivering the right key BMS® behaviours will have a considerable impact on the customer experience.
- Ease and speed of service – making the experience as easy as possible for the customer is important whilst ensuring they’re seen to quickly.
- Environment – the look and feel of a store can make a considerable difference between what is premium.
Performance in People (PiP) has been helping world class brands measure and improve the levels of customer experience within their businesses through Mystery Shopping, Auditing, Service Standards Development, and Training and Coaching. If you would like to find out more about how we can help you, contact us today:
email@example.com or 01983 568080.