Back in the day, in the early 1900s, to be exact, Harry Gordon Selfridge of Selfridges & Co. in London is believed to have coined the phrase, “the customer is always right.” Harry was a trailblazer in the retail industry—his vision was to make shopping fun, transforming it into an experience. His department store became a social and cultural landmark that welcomed shoppers to browse and buy in comfort and indulge in the latest goods.
To further cement this idea, Sears, Roebuck, and Co. published the following statement in 1905: “Every one of their thousands of employees are instructed to satisfy the customer regardless of whether the customer is right or wrong.” These retailers truly knew the power of customers. Whether or not the customer was always right, the mindset helped shift how they were treated—and as a result, shoppers flocked to these department stores. A better shopping experience drove revenue, and in Selfridges’ case, the use of window displays and in-store exhibitions gave customers a reason to comment, share, and like—real-life reviews from happy shoppers.
Fast-forward to today, and customers remain the focal point of the shopping experience, whether online or in physical stores. But, now, they are smarter and savvier than ever before. They want the shopping experience to be right from the get-go and they rely on product reviews to hit the Buy Button. And, now, it’s essential for brands to step up and deliver the best experience possible.
For customers, a major pain point is product returns. At least 30% of all products ordered online are returned (compared with 8% in brick-and-mortar stores)—and, these returns result in a low average star rating of 2.8 out of 5. This means that brands must get it right the first time by delivering the info online shoppers need where they need it. Consumers expect accurate and easy-to-read sizing charts, that colors on the screen are true to life, and that the product they’re after is a good option—that it will arrive quickly and meet/exceed their expectations. Whether you get it right or wrong, the proof is in the rating—and, this is why we’ve created the new C2C Score. By leveraging the online consumer to consumer experience, our goal is to infuse Selfridge’s age-old adage into the modern online shopping experience because all those years ago, he had it right: customers go where they know they’ll have a good experience—and their opinion means everything.
With the C2C Score, we’re helping brands give customers more power and knowledge at the Buy Button—the right info, in the right place, to make the right purchase. We channel millions of reviews into a simple score—from Good Option to Reconsider—to deliver the verified truth. So whether your customer is buying a new paddleboard or e-bike, a BBQ for grilling season, or those wireless earbuds, the product that arrives is just what they expected. Get it right the first time and you’re on your way.
Image from @selfridges