QUAY LIFE: Lee Warriner, Store Manager of Ben Sherman and Suit Direct talks all things customer service.

I started in fashion retail 17 years ago. I have seen fashions come and go, traded in good times and bad times, seen the creation of the internet shopping revolution. One thing that has never changed and remained constant is; the importance of great customer service.

So why is great customer service important?

The key difference between ‘great’ and ‘good’ customer service is that in the latter case, you’re doing only the minimum to keep your customer satisfied. But in the first case, you’re not only keeping them satisfied, but you are going that extra mile to retain their loyalty.

Last week a customer came into Suit Direct and needed a suit for a black-tie awards event. Due to his busy schedule, he had left it until only 3 days before the event to purchase it. He had never been into our store before, in fact he had never worn a suit before. Once I had taken his measurements and fitted him into a 46s black dinner suit it was obvious that the sleeves still needed shortening 2 inches. Our tailor had already collected the alterations earlier in the week and she wouldn’t be coming back until the day of the event. I wanted to make sure that the suit looked perfect for the customer, so that evening I drove to our tailor’s house (20 miles outside of Hull) & gave it to our tailor to alter. The customer was over the moon that we would go to that length for him. Once he made the purchase of not only a suit but shirt, shoes, bow tie and cufflinks, he then told me that he would definitely be back next year as he needed 8 suits for his wedding.

These days, people will only stay loyal to a company if they have a very good reason to do so. Otherwise, there is plenty of competition available. This means you have to work even harder to keep customers and build their trust in your brand and products. By providing the best in customer service, you will increase trust and build relationships with the customer and that could mean the difference between customer loyalty and customers who shop with your competitors.

Customers are craving relationship-driven companies, they want to feel special. Those companies are more successful because relationship selling inevitably leads to high productivity and high profitability. At Suit Direct we now offer a personal shopping experience on a Thursday evening. Making the customer feel special, opening the store just for them.

I have also found that great customer service is much more important than price. To get the right experience, customers are willing to pay more, thus increasing your ATV and increasing profitability.

There are businesses that think about profit before they even think about customer service. However,  I believe that those businesses who have longevity are the ones who are providing great customer service.

You can book your Thursday night personal shopping experience now. Just call 01482 324 153.

Princes Quay

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