It is perfectly acceptable for businesses to measure customer value and respond accordingly with extra services for those who stack up. A great example of a fantastic response to a measure of customer value comes from the grocery industry.
Remember the last time you were in a supermarket approaching check-out?
Remember the fast-moving line marked “Express Lane: 6 items or less?”
Have you ever counted the goods inside your basket and then removed one or two so you could get into the fast-moving line? I know I have.
What a bizarre concept: rewarding customers with greater speed for purchasing less instead of more. This “common sense” approach is downright counter-productive.
One supermarket in Ireland has turned conventional wisdom on its ear by taking the time to measure customer value. Their speediest check-out line is clearly marked: “Express lane: $150 or more.”
This lane is express! Extra registers keep the line moving. Big buyers have their purchases rung up simultaneously on two registers by two check-out staff. Extra helpers are on hand at all times to bag the groceries and escort big buyers to their cars. And special coupons are given to encourage repeat business.
With service like this, wouldn’t you add a few items to your grocery basket to qualify for the Express Lane? Now that’s common service sense that shows the importance of taking the time to measure customer value.
Key learning point to measure customer value
Your most valuable customers deserve special service to make their lives easier and their purchases more convenient. That makes sense and demonstrates why it is acceptable to offer special services to exceptional customers. When you measure customer value, you will see it’s just good business sense to treat big buyers to a little more.
Action steps to measure customer value
What do you do for your big buyers to ensure their repeat business? What special service belongs in your organization's Express Lane? It is okay to go the extra mile for those who do a lot of business with your business.
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About Ron Kaufman
Ron is one of the world’s most sought-after educators, consultants, thought-leaders and customer service speakers in achieving superior service.
He is the author of New York Times bestseller ‘Uplifting Service’ and 14 other books on service, business and inspiration. Ron is also a regular columnist at Bloomberg Business Week and has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and USA Today.