Developing competitive advantage through customer service
A Morrisons case study

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Page 2: Customer service

unp-wm-27085-tamworth-07High quality customer service is a key way in which a business can differentiate itself from another. Morrisons’ customer service strategy is simple: to provide the best customer service by developing the best-trained and motivated colleagues within an environment where the top large supermarkets compete for market share. Its specialist in-store butchers, bakers and fishmongers work on Morrisons’ Market Street to ensure customers get a personalised service from a trained professional. By building high levels of customer satisfaction, Morrisons creates a significant competitive advantage.

Delivering customer satisfaction

To provide the best customer service, a business needs to know what its customers expect of it and then meet these expectations. Customer satisfaction is vital for keeping customers happy and loyal to the business. It can often be much more cost-effective to retain customers than to attract new ones. Morrisons achieves this by offering products and services, through its Market Street, that are not offered by its competitors therefore maximising customer retention.

Morrisons has invested heavily in training and developing colleagues to generate its high quality customer service and has attracted more customers this past year than ever before. This shows that Morrisons’ customers are becoming more satisfied with its focus on personal service, efficiency, reliability, quality and freshness. Quality customer service adds value as it improves customers’ experience, making them feel valued and therefore more likely to become a repeat customer.

Customers expect to be valued and to be assisted by helpful and friendly colleagues. They need clear information and good aftersales service. They also want their queries dealt with competently, quickly and accurately. They seek value for money and high levels of colleague knowledge and expertise.

cl-picture-2Elements of customer service

Four key components of customer service are:

  • Information - this includes information given directly to customers by colleagues and details given on published material such as websites, packaging, catalogues and leaflets. In-store, directions and signs to products allow customers to navigate through the store more effectively.
  • Specialist attention - advice must be accurate, available when and where customers need it and from colleagues who know what they are talking about. At Morrisons, this includes expertly trained specialists such as butchers and fishmongers who advise on the best meat or fish for different menus as well as how to cook it appropriately.
  • After-sales service - this refers to all areas of customer involvement once the sale has taken place. It includes packaging, guarantees, complaints, refunds and exchanges. At Morrisons, helpful and friendly colleagues deliver an exceptional checkout experience to help retain customers.
  • Convenience - this includes the location of stores, ease of access and car parking, availability of public transport and convenient ways to pay, such as cash, card and ‘chip and pin’ facilities. At Morrisons, 5% of all car parking is dedicated to blue badge holders to enhance accessibility for those with recognised disabilities.

Morrisons | Developing competitive advantage through customer service
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