The best way to be more successful at the end of a customer’s shopping experience is to make the first impression first.
Nordstrom’s first impression on the customer is to get them to shop with you, rather than making a purchase.
When Nordstrom launched in 2018, it was the first retailer to offer the ability to shop and interact with their customers at the same time.
“We wanted to create an experience where people were interacting with the brand, but it also gave them an opportunity to see us in person,” says Sarah Latham, Nordstrom executive director of consumer services.
This allows customers to see themselves in the store and know their brand is there.
To achieve this, Nordstrans chief marketing officer, Anna Furlong, decided to make customers feel like their shopping experience mattered.
“If you don’t want to be the first person to buy something, you’re not going to be able to do it,” she says.
In order to do this, Latham started a process where she was able to get the attention of customers by getting them to check out and spend a bit more.
The process also created a sense of urgency around the product, so customers would come back.
“Our first month of sales are up nearly 40% in the United States,” she notes.
Latham believes this strategy, along with customer engagement campaigns, will ultimately improve the way consumers shop.
“Our focus is on creating a brand that’s as authentic as possible, and the first thing we need to do is create a sense that people care,” she said.
Nordstrays approach to customer engagement comes from a long-standing goal of making the first-time shopping experience as simple as possible.
For example, shoppers have to get through the checkout process, make a purchase, and wait for the confirmation process to be completed.
This process takes time and makes the process more frictionless for consumers.
For Nordstrom, this is a big part of why it launched its first store at a mall in downtown Los Angeles.
It allows customers who are new to shopping to get to know the store first and then take a quick look at the merchandise.
Lathan said she believes customers will enjoy shopping at Nordstrom because they feel they are being given a real experience and it is easier to learn about a brand.
“The best way for us to build trust is to have a customer who cares,” she explained.
To do this she has created a number of programs to help customers get to the point of buying, including an online shopping guide that includes information on what to expect at the store, how to make an appointment, and how to set up a shopping bag.
One program that Latham said she thinks is particularly successful is one called “My Experience.”
The program allows customers with the right information to be notified about items that are available for purchase and also how to book an appointment to purchase them.
Lathans approach to engagement has been the focus of an ongoing experiment with Nordstroms first-ever “experience shopping” experience.
It began in late 2018 and will be continuing through 2019.
“One of the things we’ve learned is that we want to create a great experience that makes people feel as if they’re a part of the experience,” Latham explained.
For this, she said she’s partnered with Lighthouse, a technology company in which Nordstrom customers will be able get insights into how they’re being used.
Lighthouse will collect customer information and provide tailored recommendations based on what they’ve done to improve their shopping experiences.
In the end, Lathan hopes that this will allow shoppers to shop in the way they want and will also increase their chances of returning to a store in the future.
“A great customer experience will be something people can walk out of the store with and be proud of,” she added.
Nordstra is also introducing a new online shopping experience, Nordstra Plus, that offers shoppers a more personalized experience when shopping online.
The new program will offer shoppers access to a range of services that will allow them to create personalized shopping experiences and even shop on their mobile device.
“When we launched our online store, we were really excited to have Nordstrom as a customer service partner,” said Latham.
“It was an opportunity for us, as a retailer, to learn from the customers who use the store.
That’s why we’re working with them to bring the experience online, so that we can connect with them more easily, give them better customer service, and help them find the right items online.”
Nordstrom is also experimenting with a new video marketing campaign, called Nordstrom Moments.
This will offer users a way to connect with their favorite brands and other brands that they are following.
“In the end we want consumers to feel like Nordstrom has been around for a long time and is a trusted brand,” she stated.
The Nordstrom Moment campaign will also be available