IRCE 2013: Improve the Customer Experience

The Global Response team attended this year’s Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition (IRCE) at Chicago’s McCormick Center. IRCE is where 9,600 retailers, service providers, and customer care firms share the latest ideas on the digital retail space.

This year’s IRCE was the largest yet, so we focused our time on rekindling current relationships and building new ones at our exhibit. A diverse assortment of ideas and connections converged from across the industry, creating a truly rich environment.

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One of the key insights gained from this show is that smaller internet retailers are coming of age. They now require the same sort of support – both from a technical and people perspective – that more established companies have been in need of for years.

This was especially evident at the session entitled “How tweets can meet customer needs,” led by Warby Parker’s Co-CEO Dave Gilboa.

“Retailers that don’t engage with consumers on Twitter miss an opportunity to provide convenient and effective customer service. Not only that, but a retailer’s activity, or lack thereof, is amplified on social media” – Dave Gilboa, Co-CEO of Warby Parker

Warby Parker was founded in 2010 in Dave’s apartment. The online retailer, now in its third year, is beginning to face the same infrastructure challenges as larger retailers, both online and brick & mortar.

Strong customer care is central to the Warby Parker brand. Their customer-focused approach has enabled the company to grow from a college side-project at launch to a 130 employee enterprise, with glasses currently featured in the new Superman movie, “Man of Steel”.

At Global Response, we have a passion for understanding your brand and providing great customer experiences.  Key customer service highlights from the show include:

  • Mobile is here – Customers are willing to purchase big ticket items via mobile, and expect a seamless experience.  Supporting them with mobile friendly websites and easy access support numbers, chat, and social media experiences will allow your brand to close the loop on their online experience.
  • Customer experience is king – All of your brand’s touch points must work together to create a stellar, cohesive customer experience.  It’s not just about flashy websites; highly functional communication and timely access to support make for happy customers and create brand evangelists.
  • Tackle new technologies – Offering your customer unique experiences through new technologies, such as video chat, can help to differentiate your brand from the competition. Just remember to test the technology and its integration with your team before launching.

As a bonus, check out our photo gallery from the show:

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