I read a recent Customer Centricity Index (CCI) report by dunnhumby┬áthat measures customer’s perceptions of how well retailers meet their needs.

The report measures and ranks retailers on “7 pillars of customer centricity”:

  1. experience
  2. loyalty
  3. communications
  4. assortment
  5. promotions
  6. price
  7. feedback

In short, companies with high Customer-Centric scores have higher sales growth over a 2-year period.

In the report I read, the US Food Service Retailers, the top performer was Outback Steakhouse. They truly stood out for customer experience.

customer centricity scores

Outback Steakhouse

Service staff are called ‘Outbackers’ and they’re apparently trained to treat customers like they would in “their own home”. They also excel in making them feel a part of the brand atmosphere when customers enter a location. And their marketing also dials up the fun and family focus to create a uniquely Aussie experience.

Now to Australians this may sound naf, however to the American target market it has great appeal.

The point is, they truly have a customer centric focus.

Australian retail seems to have forgotten this basic premise. AlthoughI was heartened to read in a Deloitte report into the Australian retail sector, that David Jones, Myer and other Australian retailers are finally focussing back on customer service in 2014.

Service beyond the smile?

Service beyond the smile?

Lets hope it goes well beyond a smile, and truly creates a memorable experience that will make customers want to share stories through their social networks.

Do you believe the retailers’ hype in going the extra mile or do you, like me, see Australian retail falling flat this year (again)?