I always feel the need to mention a great customer experience. The fact is that Canadian Tire understands customer service, finally! My local Canadian Tire store deserves the designation of Social Proprietor.
Most Canadians have a love hate relationship with our major retail brands and deservedly so. Social media is overflowing with tales of poor quality customer experiences. This example of customer service demonstrates that the landscape might be changing.
My new blender stopped working. We had purchased a more expensive blender than our usual budget had allowed, in the fall of 2013 and now it had ceased to function. I checked the manufacturer’s website for warranty information and discovered that it is sold exclusively through Canadian Tire. And the warranty clearly stated that it was for 3 years. That triggered a number of different emotions. We couldn’t find the bill from when we had purchased the blender, so the fact that it was only available from a single supplier gave us hope. The 3 year warranty period was encouraging as well. My other emotion? Going to CTC for a product return without a bill!
I would rather visit a dentist!
I set out early the next day and what happened next left me in a state of bliss. Canadian Tire understands customer service. I explained my situation, no bill, not sure how we had paid for it or exactly when it was purchased and then I pointed out that CTC was the sole retailer. The service representative said she was aware of that situation. She asked what was wrong with blender and asked if I wanted to replace the product. So, with a grin I said yes. It was all over in a few minutes. I left the store with my replacement blender and with a bounce in my step.
Why is it really important for social proprietors to deliver a positive experience? The reality is that ‘customer service’ has really become a part of the whole customer experience. Clean stores, knowledgeable staff, fully stocked shelves, a fair customer return policy and attention to your business profile on the internet are all part of what makes a successful social proprietor. For major brands the issue remains, how to deliver a better customer experience across their numerous products and outlets. Here is one store that has made great progress. Sometimes the battle has to be fought and won, one customer at a time.