'Before You Go ...'
Interview customers to develop your niche
Create your store brand based on the elements that distinguish you from
your competition. Identify which of these points are most important to customers
and build your brand around them, says an article in Retail Strategies,a
newsletter by American Express.
To do this, the article suggests conducting exit interviews. Over two
weeks, ask customers to respond to a five-minute questionnaire before leaving
the store. The questionnaire should include rankings on a scale of 1-10
of merchandise assortment, service, store environment and total shopping
experience. For the survey to be useful, you'll need at least 100 responses.
Offer gift certificates or discounts to encourage customers to participate.
Use the results to determine customers' values, then make changes in
your service policies and merchandise to accommodate these values.
by Stacey King
Copyright © 1999 by Bond Communications.