Back to school shopping can be exasperating for anyone. We are all looking for the same things (i.e. school uniform khakis, notebooks, dividers, shoes) and the closer we get to the finish line, the more likely stores will be out of what we need.
Added challenge: meet Sasquatch
My 13 year old Sam has always had big feet. I remember when he was born, the doctor, nurses, and my husband all gasped, “look at those tootsies!” As he now wears a size 14, it has become more difficult to find him shoes.
On our latest shopping expedition, we went into several shoe stores searching for something that would fit, other than resorting to shoving his feet into the boxes. My strategy was simple; I had him measured and then asked what they carried in his size. It would have been unrealistic for me to have Sam choose first, only to find out they didn’t make it in a 14 (shocker, I know).
Can I get some help please?
We were not surprised when the first store carried nothing in his size. In the next store, after walking around searching for an associate, Sam was remeasured to ensure accuracy (yep, he was really a 14). Hoping for some guidance, I inquired what styles we could choose from. The associate simply smiled and told us to look throughout the store, select the styles we liked and she would search for them in the computer database.
Urgh!!! We were in an Adidas store that was filled top to bottom with sneakers. I had a sense that she really did not want to help when she left us standing there. The selection(?) was so completely overwhelming, we exited the store. Bad customer experience = no sale.
Our next encounter was at the Sketchers store, where we were immediately greeted and directed to a “large size” section. Yay! We could finally try something on him and hopefully buy something. We left having purchased 2 pairs of shoes and felt relieved from the experience. Good customer experience = sale!
There really is a point to this tale!
Now that I have had a good rant, I am ready to get back on topic. Often we purchase from a brand/store that gives terrible service just because we like the product. Are you willing to cope with an incompetent or (worse yet) apathetic staff so that you can keep a name brand on your body or feet? How about purchasing a car from a dealership where you are uncomfortable with the hard-sell tactics of the salesmen?
As a rule, I am very brand loyal. The exception is when I feel slighted or ignored by the business representing the brand. In the end, it is of the utmost importance to be present for the customer. I gave all kinds of buying clues, yet I was not adequately assisted. Fortunately for me, there are always alternatives; even for
Where do you draw the line in the sand? Share your thoughts and stories about what makes you a loyal customer.
- Article of Interest: Creating Dramatically Different Customer Experiences (customerthink.com)
- 2 customer experiences – one week (miriamgomberg.wordpress.com)