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How Currys takes a multichannel approach to keeping its customers satisfied 

Staff at a branch of Currys. Image courtesy of Currys

When one in three sales are a distress purchase, it’s important that the customer experience works, says Currys’ Lindsay Haslehurst. For that, she says, is the case for 30% of the sales that the electricals and technology retailer makes.

“They need it now. It’s a central tech, it’s running their lives, whether that’s organising them, connecting them, helping them work, play, entertain, feed and clothe, they want it now,” says Haslehurst. “That’s where our 300 stores, our same-day order and collect, and our same-day delivery service allows us to do something that nobody else can do. But it has to be easy and it has to be right first time.”

Haslehurst says that shoppers are more demanding than ever in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. “Getting it right has never been more important, customers expect more,” said Haslehurst, chief supply chain officer at Currys, speaking at Salesforce World Tour earlier this month, adding: “Expectations are constantly evolving, and we’re expected to respond to that.”

‘Right first time’

Meeting that level of demand for “right first time” service is important for the retailer, which runs the sixth biggest website in the UK, visited more than 406m times in 2021. The retailer, whose website operates on Salesforce Commerce Cloud and which uses its Service Cloud to interact with customers across sales channels, says that 80% of its in-store customers say they value the expert advice that staff give them – especially when they buy technology products that are relatively complex and can be confusing to use. “That’s what really drives a value for them is that expert guidance and support throughout that journey,” says Haslehurst. “So for us, it’s absolutely critical one-two differentiator for us.” Making the complexity simple for customers is a key part of that. “Our customers expect it every step of the way to be a seamless personalised and integrated experience. So for us ‘easy to shop’ is about ensuring for the customer, they don’t notice any of the joins, however they choose to shop with us online, or in store.”

Also important is building long-term relationships with customers, from the point of delivery and installation to repairs and recycling further along the way. It’s about giving customers reasons to keep coming back to them. That, says Haslehurst, is about “about us helping them, taking customer needs and matching it with products and services.” It’s also, she says, about offering credit to make purchases affordable. 

“I think really our biggest challenge, the biggest opportunity for us as a business lies way beyond the point of purchase, we have a long term relationship with our customers, whether that’s in our delivering installation, repairs, trading, recycling,” says Haslehurst. “The relationship with our customers isn’t just days, hours or weeks after we sell the product, it’s years. And that creates a huge opportunity for us to live with our customers throughout that lifecycle. But that’s difficult. It’s a complicated to do. And fundamentally, that’s what we really go into when we want to delight customers and go beyond their expectations to do things that constantly surprise them and delight them. And that’s really the challenge.”

Currys is ranked Top100 in RXUK Top500 research.

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