I have a perfect example to share today about e-retailing and the importance of the physical store. I recently purchased a couple blazers from Moores and one required alterations. I went to pick up the altered blazer today and when I tried it on, I noticed that there was a ripple on either side of the shoulder that I did not notice when I initially purchased the item. I tried to point out the deficiency in the blazer and the store assistant responded that it might be due to the hanger that it was on (it was the store provided hanger). I tried to point out that I didn't see the problem the other day and that the store assistant did not point out the problem. The store assistant's response was that someone else helped me the other day and that he couldn't comment. The store assistant offered to further alter the garment at a cost of $22. I was not happy.
In today's e-retailing environment, shoppers often use the online/mobile channel to avoid poor customer service. For garments that often need tailoring, it is hard to avoid going into the store to try the item on and getting measured for alterations. Some retailers are finding success with online build-to-order garments such as jeans and shirts after complete measurements are provided.
Back to my frustrating shopper experience -- what's even more sad about this story is that when I asked another store assistant who the store manager was, I was pointed to the individual I was already experiencing poor customer service from. I had no one to escalate my situation to so I looked up the Customer Service number on the company's website and talked to them on my mobile phone while still in the store. The Customer Service agent apologized for the poor customer service, asked me to pay for the alterations, and committed to sending me a gift certificate to cover the further alterations. Will I buy from this store again -- maybe, maybe not.
Frustrated Shopper Suggestion - Physical stores need to provide exemplary customer service to meet the needs of those that need, or want, to come into the store. Storefront associates are ambassadors of the brand and every interaction either increases, reinforces, or decreases brand loyalty.
That's all for now. Gotta go shopping!