I read about Vibram Five Finger running shoes from Michael Hyatt. I’ll admit I’m curious. After my Chi Running course (where I learned to run with a mid-foot strike), I want to try these ‘gorilla shoes’. First, I need to break my overly-coddled-way-too-padded feet into the concept gently by downgrading to a lighter, less structured running shoe. I headed to the bricks’n’mortar storefront for RunningShoes.com on my quest. It was a surprisingly enjoyable experience. When I hit the gym last night to test my new shoes on the treadmill, I reflected on what made my experience great as opposed to adequate, good or just plain fine. I have a retail store (OtionSoap.com) and have a vested self-interest in providing ‘great’ experiences to customers too. Finding the clear differentiator between first-rate and fine isn’t always obvious.
What Went Right:
1. The store presented well. When I walked into RunningShoes.com, the store was lit well, organized and clean. It was easy to see everything. Prices were clearly marked.
2. The employee presented well. “Matt”, my RunningShoes.com specialist was friendly, knowledgeable and took delight in finding me the perfect shoe. He greeted me with an open-ended question “What can I help you find today?”. It was clear he was there to help and thrilled to do so. He watched me walk and run for a couple minutes, asked questions about my running habits and then came back with my perfect shoe. I bought the first pair he brought out (though did try some extra ones out just to be sure).
3. The transaction was efficient. I was in and out within 15 minutes. The entire experience from the greeting, the running to the trying, to the check out was well-paced. I never felt rushed but everything moved along
Takeaways for my retail store: 1. Re-commit to an aggressive cleaning schedule, revisit the store layout 2. Train Otion’ites to always start with open ended questions and come out from behind the counter to greet new visitors 3. Always feel delight when given the opportunity to help.
I’m curious – when you’re in a retail store, what really makes you walk away and go ‘Wow! That was genuinely a good experience“?