St Helier has been given an “average” rating for customer service after a team of Mystery Shoppers hit the town undercover.
Some 55 shops were visited by Mystery Shoppers in October last year, who gave the town’s retail staff an overall score of 73% - which is slightly better than the previous year, but still within the “average” band, and below the 80% target set in 2013.
The survey saw 55 shops visited by Mystery Shoppers, scoring ratings between “poor” and “outstanding”, with the researchers pointing out that in only half of all the shops they went to did someone say hello to them as they came through the door.
Most of all, the report found that it’s the shops themselves who are missing out because staff aren’t offering price-matching against other stores or seeing if customers want anything else.
In general, the researchers found that bigger shops did better than smaller ones, and that local stores did a better job of looking after customers than UK chains.
The report said: “The overall St Helier experience could be described as average, certainly not great. Overall, there remains room for Customer Service improvement which will help to increase sales and performance in the retail sector. “
The Economic Development department that has the remit for retail policy seems to have seen the results coming – the day before the survey started, they released an “Interim Retail Development Plan” which included Customer Service Development as one of three key areas of activity.
Excerpts from the report:
From a “Poor Performing” store…
“When I finally saw a man sitting at his computer I approached and said: "Hi. I'm looking for a jacket but I'm not sure yet what exactly I want". The Agent said something I could not understand and rotate his chair to face the computer again. The service provided was beyond appalling. No questions asked, do you want the jacket for the rain, for the wind, what sort of activities or sports. No attempt to show around some of the items in store. No inquiries what price I had in mind. I felt ignored, neglected and unwelcome.”
From an “Outstanding Performing” store…
“I would describe my experience in visiting this store as outstanding, it totally exceeded my expectation. The quality of the customer service was impressive. The clear and concise information given in a very easy to understand and I didn't feel that the assistant was overtly trying to sell to me or push me in a certain direction, but genuinely trying to guide me in choosing what would be exactly right for me.”
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