Customer service secrets of three prize-winning retailers

Start-ups in retail and hospitality can take inspiration from the likes of Katies and Michel’s Patisserie, which are among the winners of Roy Morgan’s Customer Satisfaction Awards.

 

The inaugural awards are based on Roy Morgan’s ongoing single source survey, which includes the interviews of 50,000 Australian consumers.

 

There were more than 35 winners across a full range of categories, with women’s fashion retailer Katies taking out the title of Clothing Store of the Year.

 

Michel’s Patisserie was named Coffee Shop of the Year, while Fasta Pasta was named Quick Service Restaurant of the Year.

 

Michele Levine, chief executive of Roy Morgan Research, says the awards were presented to businesses that are leading their individual fields when it comes to satisfying their customers.

 

“Customer satisfaction is more vital than ever in today’s age of social media, where the slightest negative customer interaction can literally be broadcast to thousands,” Levine says.

 

StartupSmart outlines the successful strategies of Katies, Michel’s Patisserie and Fasta Pasta:

 

1. Katies

 

In addition to being a budget-conscious store, Katies prides itself on being available 24/7, encouraging its customers to shop online, where new product is added almost daily.

 

Katies offers free shipping on all orders. If online shoppers are unable to purchase all of the items that they want, they can add them to a Wishlist.

 

“The Wishlist button is on every product page, so you can add a style in your own personal wardrobe to come back to and purchase later,” Katies says on its website.

 

The retailer also has a program known as Katies Privilege, designed to reward loyal customers. Customers can visit their local Katies store or refer to Katies’ online Rewards section to sign up.

 

2. Michel’s Patisserie

 

Despite its French-sounding name, Michel’s Patisserie is 100% Australian-owned. The concept is simple: a central bakery distributes daily to retail outlets, which display and sell to customers.

 

In 1999 the company introduced Michel’s Espresso, designed to complement the Michel’s Patisserie menu items. Michel’s Espresso is an in-house coffee roasting and training facility.

 

Michel’s internationally-certified coffee tasters source the highest grade beans from specially selected coffee growers across the globe, including a boutique grower in NSW.

 

“The secret to Michel’s success is simple – great tasting coffee,” marketing manager Pia Harrison says.

 

3. Fasta Pasta

 

Fasta Pasta is an Australia pasta restaurant chain that, as the name suggests, is obsessed with getting its meals out as fast as possible, without compromising on quality.

 

The company claims to be “fanatical” about fresh pasta, using “the finest quality durum wheat and eggs, which give our pasta its distinctive soft texture and tenderness”.

 

Fasta Pasta consistently updates its menu, branching beyond pasta with dishes such as steaks, chicken and seafood, in addition to a kids’ menu.

 

The meals are cheaply priced yet generous in size, which resonates with cost-conscious consumers.

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