Zappos Director of Customer Loyalty: Customer Care is a Company-Wide Effort During the Holidays

Last week, we had a chance to sit down with Rob Siefker, Zappos’ Director of Customer Loyalty. As a company that makes customer service a top priority, we asked Rob how Zappos changes its strategy during the bustle of the holiday season. Watch to see some of his holiday insights for this season.

Full Transcript:

During the holidays we have a seasonal work-staff that we hire, but we also have everyone in the company helping out with customer service.

We have everyone in the organization, no matter what job they have in the company, go through a four-week new-hire training process. And during that new-hire training process they learn how to take phone calls, they talk to customers, so they get the whole call center training that we provide as well.And then during the holidays we have everyone in the company, from CEO, to accountants, to whoever, answer up to 10 hours of phone calls to help us out.  It’s something that helps with moral in the contact center, because they see …

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Sell, Sell, Sell in the Contact Center With These Three Customer Care Metrics

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Imagine a customer that walks into a clothing store and asks an associate, “Do you have a blue sweater in size medium?”

Now a imagine the sales associate with a blank stare. Nothing to offer. No knowledge of the product or interest in closing a sale with a customer who has clearly identified what they hope to purchase.

It’s safe to say the customer is going to leave to find a competing store that’s willing to help her buy a blue sweater. And, that particular sales associate won’t be assigned to help customers anymore.

Now ask yourself, “Is this same scenario happening in my contact center?”

There’s no doubt that retailers are contacted every day by shoppers who show intent to purchase with questions about specific products or policies. These customers are golden. They’re primed for purchase.

Now, it’s up to the retailer to make sure sales don’t slip through the contact center. Here are three metrics that should be considered across all channels to ensure the …

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These Retailers Will Benefit Most From USPS 7-Day Delivery

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The Postal Service is extending delivery services to seven days a week to make sure people receive their holiday packages on time, providing an advantage to those retailers that most frequently use USPS for delivery.

Starting November 17 through Christmas Day, deliveries will be made every single day.

“During the holidays, no carrier makes more deliveries to more places than the Postal Service, and this year, we’re raising the bar with enhanced tracking and Sunday delivery,” said Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe in a press release.

Retailers who utilize the post office will be able to deliver packages to shoppers one day faster than packages shipped FedEx Home Delivery/Ground or UPS Ground. Shipping methods that rely on the post office include all USPS methods, UPS Surepost, UPS Mail Innovations, FedEx SmartPost and Newgistics (outsourced vendor). USPS predicts double digit package growth during the holiday season, in the range of 450 to 470 million packages.

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American Consumers More Likely To Broadcast Bad Service Experiences

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While 46% of American consumers say they always tell others about good service experiences, an even greater number say they talk about poor service experiences, according to the American Express 2014 Global Customer Service Barometer.  In fact, 60% said they always share the bad experiences, and they tell nearly three times as many people (an average of 21 people vs. 8 people).

It’s more strong evidence that marketers need a thorough understanding of customer service performance.

“People are going to talk about your service, one way or another, so what do you want them to be saying?” said Kelly Fisher, Senior Vice President, Relationship Care Strategy, American Express. “In an environment where the recommendation of a friend is so important in driving a consumer’s purchasing decisions, creating good service experiences is extremely important.”

Nine in ten consumers say they tell others face-to-face about their service experiences – good or bad, according to the study. …

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See How Home Depot Tells Customers About a Data Breach

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Retailers continue to struggle with hackers accessing customer data that spans from credit card numbers to email addresses. Home Depot said last week that in addition to the 56 million credit card accounts that were compromised, 53 million customer email addresses were recently stolen as well.

A big challenge for retailers is giving confidence back to consumers that their information is secure. It’s been interesting to watch how affected retailers like Home Depot, Kmart and Target message the news to customers.

Home Depot sent the following to customers this week:

Dear Valued Customer,

The Home Depot has discovered that a file containing your email address may have been taken during the payment card breach we announced in September. The file contained email addresses, but it did not contain passwords, payment card information, or other sensitive personal information. We apologize for this incident and for the inconvenience and frustration this may cause you.

In all likelihood this …

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