If you’ve put in the hard work of requiring the customer and pushing them through to clicking the buy button, why drop them there? Al Keck and Rebecca Griffiths, CEO and Founder of Primis, chat about customer retention, tailored post purchase sales and post purchase emails.
Al: Hi Rebecca, How are you doing?
Rebecca: Very well, very well, indeed. How are you?
Al: Yeah, good. Thank you. Welcome to today’s podcast. Where I think we’re going to talk about post purchase emails. You after we met I just suddenly thought your idea is so simple Why don’t more of us do it. So I just love, love to debate that I think really just you know, why don’t we love our customers once they’ve hit and paid for a product? For me it was it was a stark reality in our debate when we when we met a few weeks ago.
Rebecca: Yeah, no, absolutely. I mean, it’s Well, thank you for having me for starters, and yeah, I think our conversation a couple of weeks ago was all around you know, end of the day. Brands are so focused on getting the customer acquiring the customer, showing all the fancy stuff in the showroom. You know what I mean? And then how do you keep that customer coming back? And the reality is, how do you tailor your post purchase sale, or anything after the buy button as we call it? How do you continue to keep talking to your customers once they’ve made a purchase? Just because they’ve made a purchase once? Doesn’t mean That’s it, you know, they could come back four weeks later, six months later, how do you make that experience? What I call white glove from end to end. And yeah, very true. Why do you not more people do this because it’s a lost revenue stream, but you’re missing out of where you’re just you think you’ve finished you kind of wash your hands of it. And then you go back to the top of the funnel again, and you go back to the acquisition model, which is more expensive than retaining the customer who spends more from you longer term
Al: And I think it’s only becoming more expensive, more cost per clicks are going up. cost per impression is going up Facebook, Google, whoever all of those costs are on the increase which I think as business owners, our cost of acquiring a customer or CAC figure is always a key metric we need to keep an eye on and as you say, I could probably justify to the board that we need to spend more money or CAC has gone higher. If I can show lifetime value was growing because the ratio works and it’s investing now to get better reward over the mid to long term faculty. But I always think there’s an interesting point, as you say, and I think sometimes it’s how business how businesses renumerated will target people is it’s all about acquisition, rather than actually sweating the asset that you’ve already invested in growing. And so, you know, people come and say, well, I need to I need to grow turnover. So I’m just going to I need five more new traffic. And this would mean, have you got great new customers? If they like you or they’re loyal, how do we get them to buy more often and actually than my initial investment of cost of acquisition is so is it it for me? It continues to be a surprise of how unloved I think CRO is to a degree but also this is building this report and this loyalty, post initial purchase. And actually, what’s the yield on that? Potentially it’s far greater
Rebecca: 100% And I think you know, customers there’s just so much choice out there. Now whether you’re looking for a car or a piece of furniture item of clothing, there’s too much selection and you scroll for hours trying to find a particular but what do you automatically your brain defaults back to something where you’ve had a good experience whether that your the delivery was on time, whether you were communicated around that delivery, was it you know, was it free delivery was it easy returns? Was the website easy to use? Was the checkout easy was it? Did it flow did you have to put in all your bank details or was it very much you know, you know, touch touchscreen and all of these different things where these were the things we think about but then again, that’s all well and good if you’ve got all of that fancy stuff sorted, but what about when I physically handed over my over my money to the brand now what how are you going to tell me set up palming me off to your third party careers where technically they don’t really care about you as a consumer. You’re a number you’re a consigning number from a DC to a home address. That’s all you are to a DHL or an Hermes or whoever. That’s it, and then the brand is pretty much going. Thanks for your 200 quid. Hopefully you’ll come back and spend another two in Japan in a couple of weeks. Well, probably not because I’ve had a really bad experience. I’m going to spend that elsewhere at your competitors place.
Al: So what, how did you come to sort of starting in building?
Rebecca: So my background is very much than the ecommerce, ecommerce world and final mile. So I actually spent a considerable lot of my time there at a company called Amazon. So I worked in a very customer centric business and lots of very customer centric departments about building what is right for the future, whether it’s now three years, five years and so forth. And I was in sort of several departments in Amazon for just over eight years. So for me, customer experience is very much ingrained in me as a person. My expectations are very high. In anything, I put my hands too. And then I moved into sort of several startups on my final mile world, and actually worked at one of my biggest competitors based out in San Francisco for just shy of three years. And we were talking to lots of retailers and I’ve seen that customer experience is just getting further and further at the map. From a development perspective, from a budget perspective, even from job titles. People are seen as customer experience managers a couple of years ago that didn’t exist in sort of, you know, the world of retail. So for me when I sort of entered into this into this space, I saw a still a very big gap. Coming from one of my biggest competitors coming from Amazon and putting all of that knowledge and experience in one pot for me to create a product that we took to market and sort of late 2020 and started talking to lots of different retailers around you know, what are you doing around customer experience, whether that’s from customer service, right through to order tracking right through to Wisco where’s my order right through to, you know, retention and loyalty. We want to help we want to support and we want to come in and show you the product we built and the product we’re going to continue to build over the coming years ahead
Al: yeah, I think your point just a minute ago purposes like I did some research and I was fine some new shorts, which are which are quite liked, but they the company is based in Sweden, which is fine it was it wasn’t really a hassle you know it’s free delivery. If you ordered over a certain amount of money, and it was slick. It was slick to use the site. It was effortless to use. But it wasn’t a cheap pair of shorts. And as you say my experience was brand experiences great. The site was great. The PDP page was great the checkout was easy the information at but I hit here’s my card pay and now I was just so basically email here and now just in a DHL interface, and I have no real brand affinity at that point. When I now know whether this is great or not is really if DHL is good. And let’s be fair. It wasn’t the service when they arrived in 4872 hours from Sweden and updates me on the thing, but I think when we spoke last it was just the start relatively that could be so easily still keeping me on the brand website, still making it in the right tone of voice look and feel.
Rebecca: Absolutely because you’re you’re engaged. You’re engaged to that brand you bought into the brand. You’ve partnered with your money, you know, and the most emotional email that you can send out to your customers is about that order is the most highly engaged click through to an email. So why would you not build content into that from a product perspective, business perspective, whatever because your customers already wanting to see where their parcel is and again we go back to the beginning we’re fickle we want to go oh, okay, maybe we should get the t shirt to match or so many shorts now. Oh, I’ll go back and remake a repurchase but going via DHL route all DHL was telling you was here’s your parcel. Here’s what to expect. Thank you very much. See in two days. Oh, wow. Great experience.
Al: So that’s the normal process and see you in your experience at Amazon and other places have that highlighted to you that that just where they experienced was experience was at the next level in this more engaged in brand experience. You saw exponential improvement in it.
Rebecca: Yeah, so we thought we can measure everything sort of cross sort of segments. So we always break it down from A) an operational perspective. So where can we save money overall, from a customer from a customer service? You know, if a product goes if a delivery is going wrong, what do we do with pick up the phone to the customer service team? We asked where our product is. That is a cost to the bottom line of any business size of having somebody manually manning the phones from a customer service. Then we go to that the other opposite side around how do we increase customer sort of click through rates back to the website how do we increase further engagement on particular products? How do we build products and merchandise campaigns into into the tracking page to again pushing further products that that we’re pushing out on the PvP on the sort of product description page or from the website itself? No new banner campaign. Let’s bring all of that in to the tracking page. So whilst you’re trying to get customers to buy from the website, get customers to buy from the tracking page as well. And you’ve got two revenue streams coming through not just one which is your website. So we measure it in different ways. From yeah operational right through to retention loyalty, Net Promoter Trustpilot and then we bring all that in as a KPI and say right we want to measure that with you work with us and then we will be constantly measuring you as a brand to make sure you are a customer centric business. of where you want to be now and also the future.
Al: I think the other thing is that so the extra revenue opportunities have been fantastic but also a lot of businesses now are investing a lot of an aspirational content and what instantly you can just start that journey can see these outdoor shorts but it’s his his a recent exploration that someone went on wearing these shorts or here’s why we design and develop them and you could you could just instantly sort of get that person more engaged or more on board with the brand or you know I remember way back when when I was at Rafa that was one of the things that was so good in terms of the amount of content that was created it just made it aspiration people open it I look out my bike. I want to go for a ride. I want to I think I think that’s that’s really key. And this since being live what stats have you been able to prove in terms of you know, a normal process handed off to DHL customers is have you been able to understand the real impact on the customer and and net benefit Yeah, for
Rebecca: Yeah for sure. So we’ve seen sort of customer service calls decreased by pretty much up to 50%. So we’ve been able to save businesses bottom line straightaway just by you know, stopping those calls coming into into the business because of unclear messaging. Unclear emails, you know, we’re not sending them notifications, you know, and we’ve been able to do that across the board across many businesses, whether it’s an enterprise brand or a small to medium who may have a one man behind behind the phone running it, you know, that that’s difficult as a business is growing you it’s it’s very, very difficult. So for us, we have saved a lot of money within that westermo perspective, but also when brands are wanting to monitor monitor their net promoter, you know, they’ve got a certain score that they want to get to for the year or they’ve got a six months sort of figure they need to get to we come in and say Right, okay, currently you’re tracking at 6.3. But you want to get to 8.2. How do we get to that? And that is because we’re delivering a better post purchase sale experience. Is it because we’re making it more easy for them to track their experience through mobile? We’re pushing information to them without the customer having to find the information themselves. I hate having to try and figure out where I need to find the number. Can I just automatically call it without having to then come up with phone dial another number. So it’s all these different things that we factor in? But overall we want to you want to put the product into the business for them to see a reward within like four weeks, like straightaway if we don’t see that in four weeks, like something’s going wrong in the business then you know, so we are very, very cautious of you know what we come in to do and say this is where we want to deliver this for your business. You need to be on board this journey because with that we can come in and deliver everything but if your team are not enabling these things and delivering on what you need to do, you know, it’s a strong partnership you have to have with every retail brand you sell this product to
Al: absolutely agree that sort of mantra is a partnership not a supplier relationship.
Rebecca: And everybody, because it just doesn’t touch e commerce. It touches e commerce, operational logistics supply chain customer experience customer service. It’s not just oh, it’s an E commerce position. It’s an E commerce final answer. No, because this is going to benefit multiple parts. So we all need to be on the same hymn sheet.
Al: Yes, this was a different levels of organisation sizes, different challenges in terms of getting Yeah, yeah. And so So going back to the customer and the customer journey, playing devil’s advocate, if you don’t know this wonderful world of improved post purchase tracking is available. Does it really frustrate them? And and Or in our space, how? How do we set this as the benchmark of the next normal?
Rebecca: Yes, um, I think as consumers are ever changing, and we’ve changed our buying habits a lot, especially since the last couple of years where we’ve, I personally don’t go walking around the shopping centres anymore. It’s just not something I enjoy doing. Because I find, well, exactly and then you’re parking that it’s busy, and then it’s not in stock or you can’t find someone to ask a question. And then you end up get frustrated and you end up going I’ll just buy it online. I’ll go back home and I’ll do it there. So people’s people’s mindsets are changing now people are moving more towards the digital world, but also you know, it’s all about how customers want more from the brand gone and the days you can go in and think that even a standard delivery is acceptable. People want next day people want immediately people want to be told what’s going on. People want to know, you know, even around sustainability they want to know am I doing good? Am I because you’re a sustainable brand. Am I Are you using a sustainable delivery partner? So it’s all the different things that are where consumers minds have changed buying habits have changed. And I think because the choice has grown more and more, if a customer has one bad experience that’s it, they don’t go back again. They’ll go somewhere else to find the white t shirt or the Ralph Lauren t shirt. I will go to raffle and directly I’ll just go to matches because I know I can get it next day for free versus going to run to run and paying 595 The next day delivery. So it’s all of these things. Now we factor in because people like Amazon in a way have made it easy for you. You know it’s a three click sort of journey. You click the product, you click in your basket. You click click Confirm. That’s it. You’re done.
Al: I think one of the real powers on Amazon though is they almost erected delivery network. So they control the standard. And I think for most retailers we’re probably thinking about today, when if they’re selling it not via Amazon. They’re reliant on couriers, and as we were saying earlier, we can invest all the money in cost of acquiring a customer. We can do a fantastic job getting the right calibre of people there. Get the product development team, an evolution team, build great products make great products, check out processes slick if it gets chucked over the fence our view on the business is it is impeded because of the Last Mile element. And so I think yeah, I’ve had this debate with Finance Directors and stuff often into that. But Hermes is a pound cheaper than DPD for example. And this is like so Okay, so yes, you save a pound for that. That how what’s the challenge and the number of customer service calls, questions queries, as you were saying earlier, that come from Hermes, and what’s the lifetime value of
one pound but I hope is an end quickly there. Well, I saved a pound here, but I wasted five pounds in customer service extra time. So now last four, plus the customer has said is a really tricky one when people tell a little bit bottom line is that I can save a pound an order. Yes, that’s 1700 plus 1000 pounds a year. It looks appealing, but as you say no, it’s very hard to monitor measure the impact of a negative delivery person.
Rebecca: And I think, you know, some brands are, you know, we’ve talked to brands and you can clearly see that customer experience is just not on their agenda. And you kind of think we could talk about it over and over again. If you’re not on it and you’re not on the journey and you don’t believe in it. We’re flogging a dead horse. So let’s just walk away and let’s do you know what I mean? And then you walk into some businesses like you look at the likes of Lululemon or Nike or Patagonia and you know, the big brands they’ve got great customer experience, because part of their core value is around, what does the customer want? What does the customer want? What do they need? What do they need to see? What’s the future of what they need to see and they’re always innovating, versus some brands who are like no, no, we’re good. We are well, you know, we get some nice sales coming in. It’s like yeah, but you’re looking after them. Are you really nurturing? Do you know your customers buying personas? No. Okay. How do you monitor that? Then how do you know the next piece of clothing is what your customers want? That next collection you’re going to drop? Is that what your customers need? Because if it’s not they’ll go to somebody else similar to you. I’m buying that collection because they’ve learned more about their customers versus you. And there’s still some brands in that space and it’s it’s sometimes very hard you want to bang your head against the wall they come on guys. It’s so vital to get this right. But if they’re not open to it it’s sometimes very hard to to convert.
Al: Do you think this is just in recent years is it’s been easy to sell online, but it is, and I think we’re seeing it sort of in the last or maybe the coming up towards 12 months now but definitely in the last four or five months. It’s been tougher. As you say retail high streets are back open people are choosing to know for sure that that’s that’s an engaging that customer in discussion piece. It just a field in itself might sound really critical. As this field we’ve lost the edge online a little bit in terms of merchandising the site making it compelling almost like you said, What does the customer need? Where there’s a nice outside today Do we change it you know? You know, obviously we go back to the nonsense in the old school days you like right and the change shop window where there’s going to look good for the next week and it’s pretty nice things for but I just feel Yeah, that art of selling or trading a little bit online and whether that’s getting the right people in the front door but also the experience post them leaving the door.
Rebecca: Absolutely. You know, I’ve sat in many sorts of meetings with luxury brands who are you know, selling high end luxury goods, whether that’s a 10,000 pound handbag or you know, all of these very high abv and they have these lovely stores along Bond Street and you walk in and you’ve got the doorman opens the door, you’ve got the person putting the white gloves on to show you the product. And you’re like, Oh, you just feel like you know, you feel like royalty in a store like that on Bond Street. And then it might be something like Oh, well this product isn’t available, and some salespeople go but it is available online. So we can buy it online, we can get it shipped to the store, or we can have it shipped to your house. And you automatically think oh, well I’ll just go home and buy it online and I’ll get it shipped to my door and it’ll be with me in three days. But then the customer’s perception of what that now should be the same experience online than it was to offline. And there isn’t there’s a huge gap. So I’ve had the whole white glove I’ve had the door open for me about the door close me about a glass of champagne. Do you know what I mean? I’ve had the whole experience. I’ve come home I’ve got my laptop I’ve set up my you know my living room and I’ve gone right I’m gonna have a look at that handbag now. Buy it online. I’ve got the credit card. I then have to pay 495 for my delivery, why you’ve already taken 5000 pounds off the anyway so why am I doing that? Okay, we’ll go with it. 595 it is and then you put in your credit card details and then it just gets lost. It falls off a cliff and then you normally get something from UPS because it tends to be ups in the luxury world. And it’s an old brown and white, horrible look and feel. That is not what I got two days ago on your Bond Street store. And they’re like, Oh, we try and mirror it. No there’s no mirroring at all it completely opposite journeys
Al: on the on your 595 delivery piece. If it was a reason why it was too soon to cover the security or you wouldn’t mind that it’s just how well is that position?
Rebecca: Exactly. astonishing to me how these luxury brands will go oh by this spend x amount of hundreds of pounds. Oh, and then it’s 795 delivery. What Reese does that. I bought many things from them from them over the time, and I still pay for delivery not standard not next day standard. And it’s DHL Express. And it’s 595 just taken 250 quid for me, like, come on guys, but you want it and you’re like I really want that I know it all fit well. It’ll wash well it will do all of these things. I won. But I’ve just got to pay 595 Okay, let’s do it.
Al: Yeah. Frustrating. Are there any downsides?
Rebecca: From my perspective? No. There’s always there’s always incremental upsides from revenue to loyalty to customer retention. There’s no downside to this. And this is what frustrates me as well being, you know, the founder of the company. It’s kind of like why isn’t this put on more and more agendas across every brand because it would benefit everybody? And that’s my frustration in that because as soon as you talk about it, it’s a ha moment like when we met. Oh, that’s a simple concept. Why isn’t everyone doing it?
Al: I absolutely was just like yeah, flashes of lightning obvious. fpis and is like so yeah, absolutely. And in terms of technically
Al: is a lot of our businesses and brands are tend to be on Shopify, you know, the usual Shopify Magento Salesforce all the ones who’ve done the integrations into we’ve already done a lot of the legwork on the back end from a logistics perspective as well. So we’ve done all of that, in connecting the dots for the careers and services. It’s all live information when we’re presenting that branded tracking. So we’re really we’ve done a lot of the legwork. It’s just getting into the door, talking about where their challenges are, where they want to get better, what do they need to do more? And then we kind of open it up and say right, we suggest doing it down this route. This will be how your emails will look these how the email templates will work. And then we just start connecting the dots in the background a lot of the lifting and shifting sits with us. They just need to go. Yep, we’ve got budget. We’d love to do this. Let’s rock and roll. Stone retailers overcomplicated. They are six months of development. No, the development is done. We just need to turn it on. We just need you to work with us from a template perspective. That’s it. We’re done. So
Al: yeah. Sounds good. If people want to find out more about the solution and Primis..
Rebecca: so obviously our website which is premise.cx or www.premise.cx. Obviously we’re on LinkedIn page as well. And obviously all of our team are on there from a LinkedIn perspective and profile. But yeah, our website is probably the best route through and there also is an inquiry page on there as well.
Al: Rebecca, it’s been great chatting to you again. Thank you for your time. Thank you for sharing your insight and experience in post purchase
Rebecca: Bye. Thanks for having me.
Al: Thanks, Rebecca.