The following is a guest blog by iQmetrix integrated partner, Statflo.
Great customer service generally leads to great customer satisfaction, but it doesn’t tell the full story of your business. Today, customers expect on-demand, personalized, one-to-one experiences. And while great customer service helps you meet these new expectations, you also need benchmarking data to spot and improve areas of strength and weakness.
Benchmarking is one of the most effective things retailers can do. But knowing how to go about your benchmarks can be confusing.
Here are a few tips to help you properly frame your business’ performance relative to your peers.
What to Benchmark Against
The first step in a benchmarking exercise is to determine which KPIs to measure. Think about which are the most important for your company’s overall success.
For example, if you want to measure the effectiveness of your customer outreach program, some KPIs you would want to benchmark are:
- Gross profit attributed to customer outreach activities (a call, text message, or an email)
- Attachment rate attributed to customer outreach activities (a call, text message, or an email)
- The volume of customer outreach activity performed by sales associates
- Net customer retention rate
- Open rate
- Response rate
- Conversion rate
- Opt-out rate
Benchmarking comparisons can virtually be made in all areas of a retail business: Financials, productivity, inventory, customer satisfaction and retention, and employee retention, to name just a few.
Who to Benchmark Against
It’s usually helpful to compare yourself against businesses that most accurately resemble your own. But your location, market position, product offerings, and objectives, among other things, will affect the specific comparisons you want to make.
For example, a single-store cell phone repair shop in Monticello, Iowa may want to benchmark itself against a similar-sized repair shop from a neighboring town. On the other hand, a 1000-store wireless agent may choose to compare its performance with a carrier or even another established market leader outside of wireless entirely.
If you have distinct product lines, regions, or districts, you can also benchmark internally within your business. For example, comparing gross profit between product lines may help you focus on selling merchandise that has the highest return.
With an intuitive POS system, you should have access to all the figures for your own retail business, so the main challenge with benchmarking is often the process of finding external data from your comparisons.
Here are a few sources for this kind of information:
Use the Results to Improve
Benchmarking is not a one-shot exercise. It’s a starting point to address areas of improvement and double down on those that perform above the industry-standard.
While monitoring KPIs is standard practice for most wireless and tech retailers, you should regularly benchmark your performance data on a monthly, quarterly, and yearly basis to adopt a culture of continuous improvement. Without benchmarking, KPIs in isolation have limited value.
Take the Survey
Have you ever wondered how your retail business stacks up against your competitors? Every wireless and tech retailer crows about its world-class customer service, but is that the best attribute to predict success?
Find out how you stack up against your peers. Take the survey below to help us uncover key data points on how businesses in wireless are using outreach in their marketing and sales initiatives.