The Clienteling Gap…and How to Close it

We all know that the future of retail depends on how we treat our customers so that they become repeat clients. Online and in-store are combining with mobile to give the customer the most trusted and convenient experience possible.

So we did a little research to see how retailers can improve their odds for success in the clienteling game.

We found that more than 90% of retailers said they collected and kept detailed information on their clients (clients are defined as repeat customers who you have developed a relationship with). However, when we asked those same retailers if they use that information to actively clientele, less than 20% said they do.

This is called the clienteling gap.

If converting customers into clients is the best way to grow a retail business, then why is it not happening?

There are a number of reasons.

Floor business is just too busy. There isn’t a good system---most sales associates are using notebooks. It’s difficult to stick toa regular communication schedule when you are doing everything manually. Or the sales associate just doesn’t know how.

To close the gap, start by removing the excuses. Put all that customer data in one place. Organize it, store it where it is easily retrievable and can be sorted by sales trigger events like special dates, sales, and product recommendations.

Next, give your sales associates language they can use with common templates. Create sequences that do much of the grunt work.

Closing the gap requires the right tools and some personalized automation. Software that manages customer follow-up based on past buying history, special occasions like anniversaries and birthdays, and a personal note from the sales associate on each communication creates a tight relationship and makes things easier to manage.

How much will you be able to close your gap?

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